Recently I wrote about my number one CV tip, relevance (read about it here) and in it I touched on the first of the ‘E’s’ that I want to cover over the next few weeks, engagement.
Capturing and maintaining the attention of your reader is an essential function of a CV. I’ll be referring to it here as engagement, and outlining some of the factors I think you need to consider when crafting your CV.
Length – Keeping your CV short and to the point is essential, in most industries it will mean a two page maximum (four if you are in senior leadership positions). If the reader sees that your CV is unreasonably lengthy it will act as an immediate deterrent, they may start to wonder if they really need to read your CV at all…
White Space – In an effort to cut down the length of their CV, some people fall into a different trap, overcrowding. White space is an important aspect of a CV, the blank spaces give the eye a chance to rest and help define the content. When used well, white space can help convey professionalism and give a ‘clean’ and ‘crisp’ look to a CV. If someone is working their way through 100 applications, dense, text-heavy CVs are likely to come across as overwhelming, unappealing and not worth short-listing.
Relevance – I’m back to my favourite point, as I have previously addressed this I will keep this brief. Given the constraints of the space available on your two pages and the limited time you will likely receive from your reader, you can’t afford to be irrelevant!
For my next, ‘E’, I’ll cover a topic I think is rather intertwined with engagement but I’ve decided to distinguish as, ease.