How Should You Format a CV?

From For job seekers category

When looking at how to layout a CV, simple is best. Here are some simple tips to keep your Curriculum Vitae easy to read and extract key information from.

  • Stick to standard fonts styles, text sizes and spacing.
  • Blank text is fine: there is no need for graphics or charts.
  • It should be easy to navigate so using clear headings that allow the employer to easily locate the areas that they are looking for is key. Subhead each section in bold and underlined, but you don’t need to get any more creative than that.
  • Bold key information such as job titles and qualifications so that these key pieces of information can be easily found by a recruiter that may skim-read your CV. We will look at some examples of this in later sections of this article.
  • Use bullet points wherever it makes sense to do so (see what I did here?..) – this breaks up the text and helps the reader locate and revisit information.
  • A common question is “how long should a CV be?” This will vary by industry, but I believe a good guide is to keep it within two pages. Some careers will require additional sections that may expand this drastically, requiring long lists of publications, portfolios or the minutest of technical details for some skilled roles but even in these examples, two pages should easily cover the core sections of the CV. (Please note: if your CV is only one page, you do not need to add in irrelevant detail to bulk it out. One page of great content is great too.)
  • Avoid photos! I have seen everything from a filtered pout to designer suits but no matter how attractive or professional you look in your chosen snap, it is not relevant to your application.
  • Tidy up page transitions. Scanning for information is a lot easier if the page break is not mid paragraph. Try and insert your page break between sub headed sections or, if this leaves you with a large white space at the bottom of a page, insert it between paragraphs instead.

Further sections of our comprehensive guide to writing a CV:

  1. Intro.
  2. The importance of writing your own CV.
  3. How should I format my CV?
  4. What should I include in my CV?
  5. Personal Details.
  6. How do I write a Personal Profile for my CV?
  7. The Key Skills & Achievements Section of a CV.
  8. How to write an Employment History / Career History of a CV
  9. How to write the Education Section of your CV.
  10. What should I include in the Extracurricular Activities (Hobbies and Interests) section of my CV?
  11. What makes you unique? Writing a CV to be remembered.
How to format a CV

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