5 Don’ts in your CV

what not to do in your cv

You just entered the survival guide “Don'ts in your CV”. Before you start reading the article below, put yourself in the employer's shoes for a moment... Would you hire someone whose CV is sloppy, has errors, or false information? Of course not, right?

Curriculum vitae is our professional business card, a form of first contact with a potential employer, an element that affects whether we will be invited to further stages of the recruitment process. Therefore, make sure that you will not commit these CV crimes… eh, make these mistakes:


1. A chaotic structure

CVs with disorganized information and a sloppy structure are viewed negatively. You may come across resumes that include information about schooling interwoven with professional experience or talents in a completely random way. Current standards recommend categorizing material in a CV into categories such as personal information, education, experience, talents, and hobbies, among others, and this is the division you should use.


2. Fancy fonts

According to O’Donnell, curly-tailed fonts are a turn-off. People try to dress up their CVs with beautiful fonts, but studies indicate that they are more difficult to read, and the recruiter absorbs less information about you.

During the initial round of interviews, the recruiter typically spends a few seconds or so on each CV. You only have a few seconds to capture their attention. On a computer, some fonts are difficult to read. If you use them, your CVs content will not be shown properly. Example? 

You’ll be shocked to learn that the most widely used font, Times New Roman, does not provide ideal readability.

So, which option should you take? 

Use Arial, Tahoma, Calibri, or Verdana (the current standard for new Windows and Office). For example, IKEA catalogues make use of the latter. According to studies, the fonts mentioned above have the best readability.



3. Irrelevant information

In a CV, you can often find information that is completely unnecessary in the recruitment process. Candidates often “boast” about the names of their children or the breed of their dog. They also often describe the entire career path in great detail, including those jobs that are irrelevant to the position they are currently applying for. Often in the CV, you can also find information about the primary school which is a compulsory level of education, and therefore listing it is completely unnecessary. To respect the time of others, it is a good idea to only include the information you really need in your CV.



4. “Creative” content

Is a “creative CV” going to help you find employment? Normally, no.

If you’re wondering whether to send a custom CV, ask yourself what your project can tell the employer about you and, most importantly, whether the employer is looking for it from candidates. In most cases, an effective CV is primarily transparent, skillfully highlights your strengths and effectively responds to the employer’s needs. In that case, any excess of form over content can only hurt you. If you think that a creative CV will guarantee you an invitation to an interview – you are wrong. The most important are interpersonal skills, hard skills and experience!

However, it’s important to consider what industry you’re applying for. In some industries, especially the creative ones, a custom resume can help show your potential much better than listing “creativity” in your list of qualities.

But remember that sending a custom resume is quite risky and should be well thought out.  things also depend on the position you are applying for. A template of a cleaner CV, a CV of a teacher, or a CV of a manager are completely different documents than, for example, a sample CV of a student. Only in the latter case is it worth going crazy with the form of a CV.

5. A CV that’s too looong

Now it’s time… to delete all unnecessary elements. And here comes a huge problem for most of the candidates. After all, this important training from 2002 cannot be deleted or the exact job description from 7 years ago cannot be omitted. – You can delete it and you should do it NOW! Any information that is not relevant to the main message of your CV should be removed. The more unnecessary things you add, the less chance that important elements will be noticed.

Think about the profile of the ideal candidate and what the qualities, skills, and experience are. An advertisement that is a mine of knowledge about the candidate’s profile will help you in this analysis.

Remove any elements from your CV that do not tell this story. Really. All!

Let us remind you of the 3 most important tips on how to write a perfect CV:

  • Get the employer’s attention from the first seconds and make sure your CV is read in full.
  • Give up any information that is not valuable from the point of view of the offer.
  • Answer all the requirements in the job offer and show that you can do even more.

If you are looking for a graduate job and find some difficulties in the process, check on our blog what the CV template looks like and try to match it when writing your own.