There are so many CV templates available on the internet, it must be extremely confusing for the job seeker to know which one to go for. The good news is that there is no need to get frustrated. Following a few common-sense rules will help you select a CV template that you can be confident will showcase your career and achievements in a compelling fashion.
The CV template should allow the words to take centre stage
Too many job seekers pontificate as if the CV template is the most important thing. Of course, it isn’t. The most important part of any CV is the content. The words. Therefore, a good CV template should allow the words to stand out above everything else. The design should play second fiddle.
Don’t use an overly designed CV template
Many CV templates include a multitude of colours, design features and gimmicks in the belief that this is what will make the difference in engaging the reader. This misses the point. If a recruiter has a pile of CVs to go through – either online or in paper, they will always give everyone a cursory glance. What they want to see is written evidence of achievements, not a big arrow that says ‘please look at me’.
Use common sense in choosing a CV template
You want headings that stand out and enable the reader to quickly navigate their way around the CV. Make sure the information flows in order of importance with all the most important sections on the front page. Ensure the typeface is black, easy to read and on a white background. The point size should be a minimum of 11. There should be sufficient white space throughout so the CV doesn’t look cramped.
Compare your CV against the original CV template
It is easy, after you have written the CV and made many tweaks and changes, for the look and presentation of the CV to move away from the original design. Inconsistencies can set in and formatting can go awry. So, it is worthwhile comparing your CV against the original and you can then easily spot anything that doesn’t look right.
So, remember, a good CV design works in the background to help your career story to shine. It is the words and content of your CV that are the most crucial elements.
This article is written by Neville Rose, Director of CV Writers.
CV Writers, the official CV writing partner to CIBSE Jobs and provide a CV writing service including a Free CV review. They also publish Perfect CV, a professional CV writing toolkit that includes a professional CV template, video guides and a CV checking service.