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5 Hidden Defects That You Must Remove From Your CV

The job seeker today has the advantage of easy access to information and advice on how to make a good CV. This however only covers basics and obvious mistakes to watch out for.

What job seekers also have to do is to watch out for is the little errors that creep into a CV and can cause it to get rejected. Here are 5 hidden flaws on your CV that must be identified and removed immediately:-

Defect 1: Not showing that you are fit for the next level of seniority.

Whenever you search for a job, you are looking for a better job, more responsibilities with a better salary – but does your CV show that you deserve it?

You must express and word your achievements in the current role to prove to recruiters that you are capable of handling a more complex role with more responsibilities.

You can show this by highlighting your ability to handle a certain volume of work or your ability to manage resources and people.

For example- saying that you managed a sales team and sales operations does not project anything. But saying that you manage a team of 10 sales executives and 30 channel sales partners will show your leadership and managerial abilities.

Defect 2: Revealing personal information that may be misinterpreted

Be careful about giving personal data that can lead a recruiter to arrive at the wrong conclusions. This is because certain facts may make recruiters think that the candidate is a potential problem case.

For Example, giving details about your marital status, kids and dependents may give recruiters the feeling you maybe unwilling to relocate or that your work may suffer due to frequent family demands.

Also, personal data may open you up to unconscious biases which the recruiters may have. Instead, keep your CV focused on your professional skills and achievements – not your personal or family life.

Defect 3: Labeling yourself by stating the kind of job and position you are seeking.

Avoid putting an objective or mentioning what kind of job or position you want on your CV. It is dangerous. A recruiter or a hiring manager will tend to look at specific factors for short listing. If your objective does not match their requirements, you will get rejected.

Give a short summary of your experience instead on the top of your CV highlighting your professional profile.

Defect 4: Including justifications and explanations on the CV

Do not give unnecessary justifications and explanations on your CV.

For Example saying, “I have a gap because I was on maternity leave”, “I got retrenched”, “The company closed down”, “I got a much better job offer”, “I took a sabbatical” – is not necessary. It points to a problem in your career record.

Avoid doing this as it shifts the focus unnecessarily. A working professional does not need to make excuses or justify anything.

Focus instead on strengthening your current job and the one previous to that. Companies will hire you if you are useful to them, not just on the basis of a great continuity record.

Defect 5: Listing Too Many Achievements

Job seekers tend to make never ending lists of achievements that span their career.

This is counter-productive. Listing too many achievements distracts from your core message and strengths. Recruiters will get bored and skip through the section. Instead, focus on your most important achievements only.

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It is the small defects and bugs that we overlook in our CV that can cause serious harm.

If you want to know the strengths and weaknesses of your CV, you can email your CV for a professional feedback and evaluation, absolutely without any cost involved, to my email: limasehgal@gmail.com

Also feel free to follow me on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/limasehgal/ for regular CV tips, vacancies, interview tips and advice on how to conduct a successful job search (and let me know so I can follow you back)

Looking for vacancies? Go to our jobs section at www.jobnetonline.com/jobs for more

7 Critical CV Design & Format Tips To Help You Create A Powerful CV

A weak and poorly laid out CV is equivalent to wearing a shabby dress for an interview. First impressions count. Does your CV look disorganized and illogical? Or is it easy to navigate and pleasant to look at?

Here are 7 critical design and format fundamentals to help you create an effective CV that will create an impact with recruiters:-

1.    General Lay-out and design

A good design enhances the text. You can use a vertical double column format or a horizontal one, depending on the text. The important thing is that recruiters should not have to hunt for information. When using a double column format do not fill up the side panels with general lists – put meaningful text. 

There are thousands of free CV templates available on the internet. Choose one that accommodates the text well. 

2.    Margins and spacing

Ideally your CV should not be more than 2 pages. One way of increasing the space you have to work with is by reducing the margins. Large margins waste space and don’t look aesthetic. 0.5 inches is suitable. Any more than that is wasteful.

Make sure there is enough white space on your CV. White space is open space between design elements (between a header and a paragraph, or different paragraphs, or line spacing). White Space ensures that the text does not look jammed and crowded – a CV without open spaces is difficult to read.

3.    Bullet points

Recruiters have a short time to go through your CV and will skip long drawn out paragraphs.

Use bullet points instead. Each point shouldn’t be longer than 2 lines. This allows the recruiter to quickly skim through the CV and still be able to identify why you are right for the job.

4.    Font and font size

Use simple fonts. Often older versions of word may not have the fancier fonts and this can lead to problems when opening the file. Times New Roman or Calibri are good – I personally prefer sans serif fonts, they are easier to read.

Font Size : Too small and the recruiter will have trouble reading it. Too large and you’re wasting precious space. A font size of 11 is most appropriate.

Also, multiple fonts and sizes makes your CV look immature. Ensure your text has a uniform font and font size throughout.

5.    Colour

Colour is an advantage – It catches attention and makes a CV stand out briefly. Black and white documents can be bland.

Use only a single colour on your CV. A multi-coloured CV can be distracting and look tacky. Avoid dark colours – Use light and pleasant colours.

Never use a full coloured background. The CV text must always be on a clear white background. 

6.    Bold and Highlights

Ideally everything on your CV is important – and there is no need to use bold to say something is important.

Also, You can’t know exactly what recruiters are looking for and drawing attention to words or phrases that they are not looking for may confuse them and get you rejected for no fault of your own.

Keep the recruiter‘s focus on the headers and your achievements instead of highlighted words. The impact is better that way.

 7.   Organized Sections

Organize your CV into sections. It helps the recruiter find the relevant data in an easy manner. Organize all information under the following headers:

Contact details: At the top quarter of your CV, you must have your contact details. Just your name, phone number, and email. If you need to include more put them towards the end of the CV.

Summary:The first section, right on top of your CV should be your summary. A short snippet of your experience with just 3-4 bullet points that tells the recruiter what your area of expertise is.

Experience: This is the most important aspect of any CV. Recruiters primarily check whether what you have handled will make you suitable for their own requirement. Your current job must be the strongest and should be on the first page. 

Keep it brief – include only the important details on what you have managed. Do not include generic roles which do not set you apart or routine tasks that every employee handles.

There is advice out there on the internet that a functional CV is appropriate and when your job-experience doesn’t match the requirement just list functions that match the requirement. This is a bad approach and will get you rejected. The recruiter wants to see your actual work experience; under no circumstances should you compromise on this.

Achievements: Do not club all your achievements. This will make it difficult for recruiters to figure out which achievement belongs to which job. Each job in your experience must have a corresponding achievement section.

Education:This section should come last. Although, if the job requirement specifies a certain educational qualification you may include it in your summary as well. Keep this section short as there is no need to include your 6th grade results. Separate your school, college, technical trainings under separate headers.

What to exclude: There is no need to include your hobbies or references. It just adds length to your CV without adding value. And the recruiter doesn’t care. ==========================================================A good CV is primarily about highlighting your suitability and personality and making it easier for the recruiter to take a decision. Ensure it is well organized, logical and the text points out to your expertise.

If you want to know the strengths and weaknesses of your CV you can send it to me for a FREE professional evaluation and feedback to my email Id: limasehgal@gmail.com

Also feel free to follow me on LinkedIn at  https://www.linkedin.com/in/limasehgal/  for regular CV tips, vacancies, interview tips and advice on how to conduct a successful job search (and let me know so I can follow you back)

Looking for vacancies? Go to our jobs section at  www.jobnetonline.com/jobs  for more

5 Simple Yet Potent Ways To Effectively Show Achievements On Your CV

It is important that you show your achievements effectively – it is what recruiters look for in a CV. This is what brings out your capabilities and makes your real expertise visible. Why you are good at your job is displayed through your achievements.

Here a 5 tips on how to show your achievements effectively on your résumé- 

1) Define your Achievements

What are your achievements? 

Most job-seekers make the mistake of only focusing on their roles and responsibilities. But these cover only your area of knowledge and experience and do not point to why you are good at your job.

Anything that benefited the company, process or client is an achievement. For example – If you did some cost saving, or launched a new product or completed a project on time then it is an achievement.

It is surprising that so many job-seekers omit including achievements saying that they have no achievements. This is a fatal mistake. Never think that the work you did was not special enough to qualify as achievements. You don’t need proof like a recommendation letter or a promotion to show something as an achievement.

2) Quantify your achievements 

Your achievements cannot be your opinion. They have to be factual and clearly show the benefit you have created for the company.

So it is not enough to say I reduced transportation costs by re-negotiating the contract with the vendor. You need to quantify it, e.g. reduced cost by 30% .Or saying I negotiated a deal for setting up a 25 acre warehousing unit is an achievement. Or I improved the component inventory monitoring system resulting in savings of over $90,000!

Also make sure your achievements that were rewarded by the company are explained. For example, ‘Won the award for best salesman of the year’, does not effectively show your achievement, but ‘received award for achieving the highest sales of 1 crore INR in my territory’ shows it. 

# Numbers, facts, figures are needed for expressing your achievements effectively

3) Choose your achievements carefully

What achievements to show is a very important factor. 

When you show achievements relating to your current job make sure it also reflects your level of seniority. For example, if you are a sales executive then saying that I achieved my target of 1 million USD and won a trip to Singapore is good.

But as a Vice President or CEO it may not sound like a great achievement because managerial roles require handling a team of executives or distributors, or resource handling, so the achievement has to reflect an achievement of a corporate goal rather than an individual goal. For example since I joined, I expanded operations to the Far East market resulting in an organizational growth of 40%.

4) Balance the visibility of your achievements on your resume

It is very important that your current job shows achievements, because recruiters are interested in what you are doing now rather than your past. 

What you achieved as a Trainee or as a junior executive is really not that important if you have packed in 10 years experience after that. 

# The current and two prior jobs must reflect achievements

5) Present your Achievements effectively

Your achievements must connect with the company to which they belong. So do not make a combined list. Put your achievements alongside the company to which it belongs.

Use simple, precise English. Use bullet points. 

And remember that achievements generally have to be in the past tense even if you mention that it is a continuing benefit. For example – Set up new offices in 4 countries in a record time of 6 months, is your achievement even though it may have spinoffs of benefits for the company on a continuous basis but it must be stated in the past tense.

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Is your resume reflecting your achievements effectively? Does it contain any fatal errors? How can you improve the impact of your CV? To know, send your CV for a FREE professional evaluation and feedback to my email id: limasehgal@gmail.com

Also feel free to follow me on LinkedIn at  https://www.linkedin.com/in/limasehgal/  for regular CV tips, vacancies, interview tips and advice on how to conduct a successful job search (and let me know so I can follow you back)

Looking for vacancies? Go to our jobs section at  www.jobnetonline.com/jobs  for more

36-Point Checklist To Follow For A Successful Résumé

Creating a successful résumé involves a lot of hard work and attention to detail. Small errors could have a big impact – and create a negative impression! It also requires a strong understanding of how recruiters search for candidates. Make sure you use this checklist before you circulate your CV.

Logical Structure and Flow

1. Make sure your CV is well organized.

2. Each section must have a header like – summary, work experience, personal data, skills, publications, research, etc.

3. For the text, use short bullet points only – avoid long paragraphs.

Updated Contact Information

4. The top of your CV should contain your basic contact information – your mobile number, email.

5. Don’t give multiple contact details as it gets confusing to choose from. LinkedIn, address and other links can be put in elsewhere on the CV, towards the end.

6. Check that all contact details are updated.

Title/Header

7. There is no need for a header or title to your CV. If you have a title saying “Resume/CV” – remove it now. It is stating the obvious, and takes up precious space.

8. Don’t say I am seeking a job or position.

9.  And avoid putting a prominent block label on top – like Award Winning Sales Manager or Creative Designer.

Overview / Summary

10. The content of your CV must begin with a brief overview/summary of your areas of expertise and your industry background to give recruiters a glimpse of who you are.

11. Don’t put an objective on top to state what you desire – no one cares!

What work you handle – the ‘Work Experience’ section

12. Don’t lay emphasis on routine job-functions common to everyone in your field. Instead, focus on what sets you apart. For example, if you are in sales, focus on the products you deal with and the territory you handle and not on routine sales functions like client interaction or liaison with dealers, which is understood.

13. Clearly show which areas you specialize in and what are the areas that you actually handle for the company.

14. Make sure your work experience is in reverse chronological order.

Achievements

15. Clearly spell out your expertise through your accomplishments. Ensure you have separate “Achievements” sections corresponding to each job you have included in your work experience Do Not create one huge section with all your achievements all put together.

16. Quantify your achievements. Show figures! It’s not enough to say ‘Increased sales substantially’ instead you should say ‘Increased sales by 25%’

17. Numbers must be mentioned in numerical form- not text form – ’70’ instead of ‘seventy’.

Skills Section

18. Make sure your “Skills” section only includes specific details: Like for example, knowledge of a professional software, or a particular type of machinery or handling some specific tool or equipment or a type of surgery or research area.

19. Avoid listing soft skills, such as leadership skills, communication skills. Instead, weave your soft skills into your job description itself by using examples that show that you posses these skills. For example, led a team of 10 people shows your leadership and team management skills.

Education

20. This section should be included after your work experience section. Only include relevant education.

21. Remove your early education as it is understood that you have passed school if you have done a Ph.D.

22. If you are applying for a job that asks for a specific education qualification, also mention that qualification in your summary at the start of your CV.

Personal information Must Be Brief

23. Avoid putting your photograph on your CV unless it is specifically asked for. 

24. No need to put in hobbies and interests.

25. Remove marital status, parents names, details of your family background or dependents.

26. Date of birth, passport, details, nationality can be used.

Reference Section / Declaration

27. Remove these sections. Again, there is no need to state the obvious.

28. Also don’t write references on request – all employers know quite well that if they want your references, you will definitely provide it.

Length

29. After you have finished with the above, make sure your CV fits into 2 pages. If it is longer, trim trim, trim. Anything beyond that gets boring. Employers are more interested in your current level of seniority rather than your role as a trainee 10 years back.

Neat Appearance and Professional Finish

30. Keep your CV well-spaced out, grammatically correct and without too much clutter of heavy text. There must be enough white space between the different sections and elements of the CV.

31. Use black text on white background and do not use more than one colour.

32. Avoid graphics pie charts or bars, flow charts, symbols and pictures. It is distracting.

33. Use a single font. Font size 11 preferably.

34. PROOFREAD extensively. You cannot afford any spelling or grammatical mistakes. It gives the impression you lack attention to detail.

PDF & Subject Line of Emails

35. When applying for a job unless directed otherwise – send your CV in the .pdf format. It preserves the format of your CV.

36. Check the subject line of your email – don’t leave it blank or just say CV or job application in the subject line. Instead – Your Name – Job you are applying for – and reference code if any, should be mentioned

================================================================Will your CV get you noticed by hiring managers? Does it contain any fatal mistakes? How can you improve the impact of your CV? To know, send your CV for a FREE PROFESSIONAL EVALUATION AND FEEDBACK to my email id:  limasehgal@gmail.com 

Also feel free to follow me on LinkedIn at  https://www.linkedin.com/in/limasehgal/  for regular CV tips, vacancies, interview tips and advice on how to conduct a successful job search (and let me know so I can follow you back)

Looking for vacancies? Go to our jobs section at  www.jobnetonline.com/jobs  for more

The Do’s And Don’ts Of Résumé Writing – Tips On How To Write An Interview Winning Résumé

Your CV is the most important document of your career. It must be flawless and must also effectively tell recruiters why you deserve to get hired. Even the smallest omissions or the slightest mistakes will hurt your career progression.

I do a lot of resume evaluations and have seen a pattern of mistakes that job-seekers make. ( you can send your CV too for a free professional evaluation and feedback to limasehgal@gmail.com ). As a result, I felt the need to create this list of do’s and don’ts of CV writing as an easy reference so that job-seekers can draft a great CV and so that no one gets rejected because of their CV.

DO’s

1 # do start your CV with a summary of your professional career – 5 bullet points maximum

2 # do list your work experience in reverse chronological order

3 # do tailor your skills and responsibilities based on the job you are applying for – ensure your CV is optimized for the ATS system.

4 # do weave your soft skills into your work experience and achievements.

5 # do list your achievements holistically alongside the job in which you made the achievement.

6 # do quantify your CV – wherever you can, use facts and figures – use digits not words (for example write ‘4 million ‘ not ‘four million’).

7 # do make sure your contact details are clearly listed on top of your CV.

8# do mention which country and city you have worked in/are working in.

9 # do list the industry specific hard skills you possess.

10 # do proofread your CV before sending it out – ask a friend to also proofread for you.

11 # do send your CV as a PDF document – so that the formatting is retained.

DON’TS

1 # don’t use a career objective – it is no longer relevant.

2 # don’t use long paragraphs – one thought should be in one line – use bullet points.

3 # don’t flood your CV with keywords and jargon – it should flow naturally.

4 # don’t include personal information such as religion or marital status. Also don’t include a photo unless specifically asked for.

5 # don’t let your CV go beyond 2 pages.

6 # don’t include hobbies and interests.

7 # don’t use too much colour – use no more than one light color and use black text with a white background.

8 # don’t use tables, graphics, or links – it is distracting.

9 # don’t use an unprofessional sounding email ID.

10 # don’t list routine job functions that every employee would have.

11 # don’t include salary details.

12 # don’t use fancy fonts – use a simple font and a uniform font size.

13 # don’t underline or use bold for anything except headers.

14 # don’t lie or embellish any details –you will get caught.

15 # don’t include the phrase“references on request” – it is understood.

16 # don’t put a declaration as to the true nature of the contents of your CV – it is not a legal document and it is assumed that the contents are true.

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Stay clear and concise on what you want to show on your resume. There is so much competition out there, you cannot afford to make mistakes in what you communicate to others through your CV.

For a FREE PROFESSIONAL EVALUATION AND FEEDBACK on the strengths and weaknesses of your CV, mail your CV to limasehgal@gmail.com and get tips and advice on how you can improve the impact of your CV and boost your job search.

Also feel free to follow me on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/limasehgal/ for regular CV tips, vacancies, interview tips and advice on how to conduct a successful job search (and let me know so I can follow you back)

Looking for vacancies? Go to our jobs section at www.jobnetonline.com/jobs for more

The Winning Sales Pitch! – How to Create An Effective Sales Resumé

Finding a suitable candidate for a sales position is a tough job! Ask any hiring manager and you will get the same feedback. “We get a lot of applications but taking a decision on a candidate’s potential for revenue generation is very difficult.”

Here is a list of essentials that every sales professional must show on their resume. The following is a perspective from a hiring and employer’s point of view.

1) Consistency In Revenue Generation.

Consistency in revenue generation is very important for all companies.The common mistake that most job seekers make is that they think that highlighting their key achievements or brilliant breakthroughs only is good enough. It is not enough.

Your CV must also communicate your ability to consistently bring in revenue for the company and contribute towards the growth of the company.

Let’s say you signed a million dollar contract or got a high value sale. That shows that you are competent and successful. But the question that arises is whether that is a fluke or can you do it again and again and again?

# The most effective way to show consistency in revenue generation is through your achievements in all the companies you have worked for. Your current job is important but to show consistency you need to show your achievements and contributions in all the posts you held from the beginning of your career till now.

2) Specialization Of Product Or Services

Sales and marketing is a highly specialized function. Whether you are a junior person or at a senior management level, your knowledge of the market and the product is important to a company. This helps in reducing the training period and also ensures that you have the potential to reduce the gestation period to produce results that everyone has when they join a new company.

The truth is that most companies are usually very clear about what they want – They want to know what your expertise and contacts are.

Most job seekers presume that the ability to successfully sell a product is all that’s important and if they manage to show that then a company will believe you have the ability to sell anything. This is not true. Success in sales has a basis in your experience in handling a product, territory or clientele. This is your background and specialization and this is what one looks for while screening a CV.

# Make sure you are very clear about showing your specialization.

You can show it in the following ways:

I) Product

The products that you have managed are very important. Most job seekers make the mistake of generalizing too much. For example, saying you sell generators is not enough, they come with various capacities which also determines the end user- Eg. household, cement plant or airfield.

Or for example only mentioning that you sell insurance is vague because insurance is also of various types. Do not make the person who is reading your CV have to guess the nature of the job you were performing. Spell it out and clearly explain what products you have handled.

I have also noticed that often very senior professionals make the mistake of presuming that because they are so senior and have good experience, that they need not spell out the product – since they only need to handle a managerial function of directing a sales team, and that their job is directing and not frontline selling. This is counterproductive as hiring managers will most definitely want senior managers with relevant work experience.

Look at it like this. If I am a hiring manager then I will be looking for specific experience with a specific product. So if my company is selling paints to builders and construction companies then I would prefer someone who has done this job over someone who is selling telecom services to builders and construction companies. I would also reject the CV if it just says I sell paints because I cannot figure out if you are doing direct sales to builders or just to your dealer network and stockists.

And never presume that just because the company you are working for is famous that everyone can guess the product you handle. ITC is into FMCG, hotels, paperboards,packaging, agro-business & information technology. So if your CV says I am working for ITC, I still don’t know what you are selling. If your CV says I am working for Rolls Royce without mentioning that you sell Aero Engines, I might think that you are selling motor cars because that is what I know. Be clear and specific about information. Nobody will do an internet search or call you to ask.

II) Sales Channels.

If you are selling a product then a company wants to know to whom you sell it to? Most job seekers never bother to explain this.

For example FMCG, automobiles, paint, financial services, IT products, security equipment, all have specific channels of sale either through dealer networks, retail outlets, direct sales, networking…

If you say you are the General Manager Sales or a Sales Executive then I would like to know what channel of sales you can develop for my company. This is your real expertise and it also reflects your contacts. If you have experience in selling property, thermal power plants, insurance or toothpaste then how you developed, managed and generated revenue out of the sales channel is extremely important.

Also show what you have developed. For example- I developed a network of stockists in Europe to sell Herbal shampoos. Or I developed contacts in the Ministry of Power / Energy to sell high voltage power transmission products. Or I sold health insurance to the existing account holders of our bank.

What must show clearly in your CV is your knowledge, experience and success in the relevant sales and marketing channel.

III) Territory

What you sell and where you sell it is the core of any sales and marketing resume, however junior or senior you are in your job.

Did you manage sales in a particular city, region, country, and continent? Be specific about showing this. It is highly important.

If I am looking for a Territory Manager for a particular region and you have handled that region only then you may be suitable. If I want a Country Head in Europe and you have only worked in African markets then you are definitely not suitable.

But if you do not mention anything in the hope that the company will be confused enough to call you for an interview, it will not work. They will just move on to the next CV.

3) Achievements:

Many job-seekers tend to isolate their achievements and put them in a list on top of the resume. You must ensure your achievements are listed along side your experience as well, so that it gives hiring managers a complete picture.

When you show achievements on your CV, you have to be specific to the role that you handled for that particular job to which the achievement belongs.

For example: You say you successfully sold – 2 million dollars of soap in Japan or India through distributors, That’s good – but if you add the fact that you did this for a new brand of luxury soap that the company launched, it improves the perspective and adds to the achievement. Or if you are selling services for bridge construction specify the kind of bridge- over swimming pools, lakes or seas? And tell them where you sold it and what revenue generation was achieved. Achievements are about the real work that you have done.

Achievements have to presented in a factual manner. For example: By how much did you increase revenue? How did your marketing strategy make an impact on the company you worked for? Quantify your achievements, include detailed facts and figures.

And remember that self praise is your opinion about yourself. It does not impress any one. Your CV clearly needs to prove how and why your are the best choice for the company.

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Please remember that Sales positions have a lot competition. This is also a function that is quantifiable, so it has to be performance driven. Delivery, performance and revenue generation is very crucial to an organization. Your CV must be able to show these aspects.

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Is your resume showing your expertise as a sales professional? Send your resume for a FREE professional evaluation and feedback now to limasehgal@gmail.com and get tips on how to improve your CV.

Also feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/limasehgal?trk=nav_responsive_tab_profile for regular CV tips, vacancies, interview tips and advice on how to conduct a successful job search.

Lima Sehgal is a Publisher, Author, Career and Resume Development Specialist.

Other Contact details include: skype: lima.sehgal Or WhatsApp: 0091- 8130680957

7 Things Recruiters MUST See On Your CV

Most of us have gone through the heartbreak of getting rejected for a job opening that we felt we were ideally tailor-made for. This may be because your CV failed to reflect the qualities that hiring managers hunt for.

That is why it is very important to identify what companies are looking for in a potential candidate. If you want to succeed at getting shortlisted for interviews, you have to see your CV not from your own perspective but from an employer’s perspective.

Here are 7 things recruiters MUST see on your CV and how you can succeed at showing it to them.

1) Suitability

You need to be a good match for the job posting to get shortlisted. Your CV must show that you have work experience which relates to the job for which you are applying. What companies are searching for is this – Can you produce the required results for the post you are being hired for?

Unless your CV points in this direction quickly and accurately, the person who is shortlisting will skip your CV and go to the next CV in the pile.

Your suitability can be shown through your work experience and achievements. Your CV must show your knowledge, understanding and hardcore experience in producing results in the shortest possible time.

# To help a recruiter notice your suitability quickly, show it right on top.

Make a short overview/ summary right on top of your CV with 3 to 5 bullet points expressing how many years of experience you have, your designation and your core expertise.

Once they glimpse your suitability it helps them connect with you and encourages them to read your CV further.

2) Real Experience

Experience is about the functions you have handled in your job during your career. However, job seekers fail to show this effectively and tend to give a detailed report on every single thing they do. Hiring managers find this utterly boring to read and they usually skip it. This is a crucial aspect of the CV, and must be effectively shown.

To show your experience more effectively, stop giving obvious job descriptions. For example: “I am a sales person and I sell” OR “I am an accountant, I do accounting” OR “I am an architect, I design buildings”– along with all the jargon that goes with it. None of these statements say anything about what makes you good at your work or what makes you perfect for the job.

What you really need to do is to show how your experience qualifies you for the job. Talk about your real accomplishments!

Instead of saying, I am a civil engineer, give details of what you have actually built – “a 2 km long bridge across the river OR “a township spread over 400 acres” OR “A school building in the neighborhood”. If you are a sales executive, “I sold 1 million worth of products in 1 year” is better than “I handled sales and marketing.”

# Talk about what you have delivered. Giving relevant facts will also help in making each company / employment on your CV different, more informative and interesting to read.

3) Achievements

However good you are at your work, it does not matter unless you show you are able to produce results and achieve the company’s goals and targets.

Saying “I am good” does not matter – that’s your opinion. You have to prove why you are good.

A lot of job seekers only give a list of awards, achievements and appreciations from the company. For Example- “Got Best Salesman reward and won a trip to Honolulu” OR “I was given a letter of appreciation & increment for introducing cost saving methods”.

A better way to convey your achievements is to say “Won trip to Honolulu because I sold XXXX worth of products, more than anybody else”.

Remember, achievements also include those aspects of doing a job well for which you may not have got a special recognition. For example – “Over the past 5 years in the company as a safety officer there were no accidents” OR “I met the sales target year on year” OR “I achieved a 98.9% success rate – of patients not dying after a surgery performed by me…”

# Achievements have to show how you contributed to a company goal by doing your job well or excellently. But you may or may not get a reward or appreciation for it. Simply doing a job well can also be shown as an achievement. But this must be shown in a brief and precise manner.

4) Creativity

Companies want people who can use their brains to find solutions and make contributions that benefit them. Creativity is a real asset for all employers. They are looking for people who can add surplus to the job.

So as a job seeker you must make sure that your achievements also reflect your creativity.

For example, increasing sales in your supermarket outlets by 50% each year is a good achievement – introducing uniforms for staff in your store to make them identifiable by customers shows creativity – both are good points to use. But the second achievement highlights creativity.

You can show creativity on your CV by highlighting instances where your ideas have benefited the company. For example, you have achievements that make you a good HR manager, but introducing bio-metrics or computerization is creative. Or, as a warehouse manager, you have great achievements but the fact you decided to implement a bar code system to replace manual checking in your warehouse is creative.

Even if your job is mechanical and routine, creativity can be shown. Did you find a way to do the same work in an improved manner? Creativity does not have to be a profound idea – Just one that leads to improvements.

# Being creative must also show in your achievements.

Did you think of any new ideas that resulted in reduced costs, improved processes, nurtured growth, solved problems, saved time, increased revenue?

Show it clearly on your CV.

5) Skills and Competencies

It was a good idea once upon a time to give a great list of skills – But today doing so will lead to recruiters skipping this section.

If you have a specific technical skill – like software or use of a machine or instrument –list it.

But if you are planning on listing general skills like SCM or design or sales – it’s passé. It’s redundant for an accountant to say I know accounts, trial balance preparation or bank reconciliation. Or, if you are an IT professional, it’s silly to you are an expert in MS Office, when even a school kid is an expert. If you decide to mention or list your skills then make sure it is specific to the requirements of the job applied for.

Avoid saying general things like strong negotiation skills, team player, hardworking, keen learner, self-starter … really, it’s a waste…Instead of saying that you are a team player, talk about how you handled a team of people and successfully launched a new product or achieved a deadline. It becomes real then.

# Direct attention to specific skills that are important to the employer. This may include a technology platform, a software, a methodology or a specific knowledge that is important for the post, and leave out generalities.

Or if you can show something specific for example a language, familiarity with a territory and country or a specific qualification that you think would be advantageous to the employer – show that.

6) Good Communication

Good communication skills are a basic requirement for all jobs. So, your CV must show how good a communicator you are – both verbal as well as written.

# A well written resume with good language, no grammatical errors with clear thinking and presentation reflects a person with good communication, language and written skills.

7) Confidence

You have to project yourself as a confident person and your CV is a direct platform for showing your confidence.

There are many ways to project confidence. Your expertise and success must be clear – and visible. A poorly made CV shows low self-esteem and reflects poorly on your presentation skills and professionalism. Are you proud of your CV?

Also make sure your LinkedIn profile and your CV are updated and well presented. You must look smart & professional everywhere and all the time. No one wants to hire someone who can’t take the trouble of creating a good CV.

# Confidence is an intangible quality that shows because of a smart CV. Make sure you show it.

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To know what your CV reflects to recruiters and hiring managers — get a FREE EVALUATION AND FEEDBACK of your CV, by mailing your CV to     limasehgal@gmail.com      and get tips and advice on how you can improve the impact of your CV and boost your job search.

Also feel free to follow me on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/limasehgal/ for regular CV tips, vacancies, interview tips and advice on how to conduct a successful job search (and let me know so I can follow you back)

Looking for vacancies? Go to our jobs section at www.jobnetonline.com/jobs for more

7 Things You Should NEVER Include On Your CV

Job seekers tend to focus on what to include on their resume, but it is equally important to know what NOT to include on your resume.

What information to include is in your hands, but remember that even small mistakes can backfire and reflect badly on you and in turn hurt your chances of getting shortlisted.

Here are a list of things that you should NOT include on your CV.

1) Personal Information; What to include and what to exclude:

The basics of personal information that you have to include are Name, Address, Email, and Mobile. This information is necessary for a person to contact you. Make sure that all contact details are current and in working condition.

– Address
Your address has to be a place where you can be reached.

#Avoid giving an address of some remote location even if it is your permanent address. If you have no permanent address or you are changing locations frequently, do not list it. You can give an email ID instead.

– Email IDs
Your email ID must be in working condition and you should frequently check it.

You can include up to 2 email id’s on your CV. Just ensure you do not include your current company ID on your CV.

# Do not include email IDs that are descriptive – like sexysanjoo, chooserekha , Manjeetforsuccess – Please choose a mature email ID for your job hunt- the best ones are simple with just combinations around your name.

– Links.
You should include links and details of your Linkedin profile, Skype and website, and to your portfolio.

# What not to include are links that make a person move out of your CV and into your company or college website or to other places on the internet.

– Photographs.
Your photograph needs to show you with a frontal view, in formal attire and a smile. There should be a clear background behind you. Prepare 2 versions of your CV –with and without a photograph.

# Avoid sending your CV with a photograph, unless it has been asked for. Someone may reject you for no reasonable fault but just because of how you look. Also remember, photographs are graphic files and are heavy to email, which can lead to technical difficulties in opening your CV or email.

2) Do NOT include statements of self praise and emphasis:

Many job seekers tend to put in declaratory statements in their “Objective”.
Here are some examples:

Objective: “Talented, multifunctional visionary seeks …”
– “Looking for middle or senior position with an organization where I can contribute…”
– “Award winning national sales manager looking for a challenging work environment… “

No company or recruiter is interested in what you want and what you are trying to say so vehemently. They are interested in only what they want.

# Cut it out- Create a short summary instead- just 2 to 4 points maximum telling them what your expertise is, so that your value to them is clear from the start.

3) Do NOT include explanations for job changes in your CV.

Many job seekers find it necessary to explain why they left a company in the past.
For example-“Left company because – I had a baby, had an accident, left to avoid relocation, got retrenched, company closed down, left because of no growth prospects, daddy got posted abroad” – The reasons are varied.

This is highly avoidable because the explanations you give can have different interpretations for different hiring managers. Lets take the example given above to get an idea on how others may view it.

Example: She had a baby last year so she has to cope with a 1 year old kid’s problems- She would be taking leave whenever the kid falls sick. Oh he had an accident? Maybe he is a rash driver or is he hiding a disability related issue? She left because daddy got posted out? So next time daddy get another posting she will quit. Got retrenched, company closed down, left because of no growth prospects ? Hey this may be a person with a problem – probably someone who gets shunted our easily – Maybe because he is dispensable?

#Do not give reasons for leaving a company on your CV. The reasons can be misinterpreted. You can give an explanation for a job change when you are called in for an interview instead.

4) Do NOT include your salary details.

Job seekers tend to mention their current salary details or give their CTC ( Cost To company ) figures in their CV. They mention it either with their current job, or give salary figures for all the jobs that they have worked in.

Including salary details on your CV is a fundamental blunder. This is because companies have different structures for salary preparation. And if you don’t fit into their structure you may get rejected. They may also reject you because you are over their budget.

By including it, you are creating a reason for rejection without getting a fair chance to be called for an interview where you get a chance to negotiate or compromise.

# Never include your salary details on your CV. Give yourself the chance to discuss and negotiate your salary requirement during the interview.

5) Do NOT include references, unless specifically asked:

There was a time when references were a necessary part of a CV. Job seekers used to go through a lot of trouble getting references from impressive contacts.

Today , there is no need to give references on your CV. If you are a job seeker, employers know that you can produce references. So you do not have to say – “References on request”.

In today’s environment a reference check happens to be the employer’s privilege. Every company has their own requirement- It could be talking to your client, your boss, other ex- employers, your colleagues. So if you are selected for a position, they will probably ask you for a specific kind of reference.

# Avoid putting references on your CV when there is no need for it. It makes your CV unnecessarily long. You can produce them when specifically asked to do so.

6) Do NOT include family details.

Job seekers tend to include information about their marital status, kids, employment details of spouse/ father ,religion.

This kind information creates impressions about you that you have no control over. Suppose a company is not keen to hire a person who is married, why take the chance of getting rejected without a fair chance? Personal data is not compulsory to show. People are keen to know what you can contribute to their organization. So stick to showing your expertise rather than your personal life.

And never mention your religion on your CV. This is often a ground for prejudice and getting rejected.

# Avoid giving personal information on your CV.

7) Do NOT include a conclusion statement at the end of the CV.

Remove the oath bearing statement at the end of your CV that says- I declare that all information is true and updated to the best of my ability – along with a date and signature. It is understood that you shouldn’t lie. Also, it is a CV not an affidavit.

# There is no need for it at all. It is redundant and it just occupies space.

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Stay clear and concise on what you want to show on your resume. There is so much competition out there, you cannot afford to make mistakes in what you communicate to others through your CV.

For a FREE EVALUATION AND FEEDBACK on errors and mistakes on your CV, mail your CV to      limasehgal@gmail.com      and get tips and advice on how you can improve the impact of your CV and boost your job search.

Also feel free to follow me on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/limasehgal/ for regular CV tips, vacancies, interview tips and advice on how to conduct a successful job search (and let me know so I can follow you back)

Looking for vacancies? Go to our jobs section at www.jobnetonline.com/jobs for more

5 Ways To Effectively Show Your Expertise On Your CV.

There are too many experts telling us what to do and not do with our CV. Most of us become quite brainwashed or too afraid to use our own common sense in deciding what to do for improving our CV.

If you have work experience then you have a great and valuable asset that can be of benefit to your future employer. Your CV has to make others see this fact.

So keep the following points in mind to create an effective CV.

1) The Resume Summary is crucial.

What is a summary? Right on top of the CV there has to be a summary. A summary is a brief headline on who you are, what you are good at and why you can be good at a certain type of job in your field. The purpose of a summary is to help the person who views your resume to connect with you.

It helps the viewer spot the relevant. For Eg. Civil Engineer with 14 years of experience in heading projects for developing residential townships. Eg. Sales Executive with experience in business development in projects and channel sales development in the paint industry

Most people make the mistake of treating a resume summary as a platform for emphasis, delivery, advertising and selling oneself. The purpose is different. It is a psychological angle. You have to be subtle and tempt them to read your CV.

What is it aimed to do? It has to lead the person viewing it in a direction. It must show why you are a good choice.

This is what a summary should be. A summary should be a brief. Never more than 3 to 4 points that state who you are, at what level you are and a few points on what you have contributed in your trade, profession or industry. But this is not a place for bragging. It must be factual.

# It must have a single focus which is directed to the post you are applying for. If you have done different things that you are good at or have good experience in different fields the person reading it will either get confused or not be able to connect with it. It must show your suitability and relevance for a post and must have a single focus or specialization.

2) Focus on your expertise.

What does expertise mean? Expertise is about what you have acquired during your working with various organizations. You have worked at a profession and acquired skills and you have become good at doing certain things that have added value to the company, that is your expertise.

Every company is looking for expertise, the value you can bring to the job and the company. A successful CV communicates your expertise, what you can offer to the company as a professional.

#To communicate your expertise.
1. Be specific about your work function, and what you have done in the companies you have worked in.
2. Communicate exactly what you implemented that benefited the operations, service, sales or whatever you were /are handling.

3) Highlight your achievements

Most professionals find it difficult to define their achievements. But everyone has achievements that come as a natural course of doing a job well. Remember if you did not do the job well the company would have sacked you.

You have to define your own achievements. This is because even when you do the routine aspects of your job well like being accurate in maintaining books of accounts, routine preventive maintenance of machinery or handling the administration of an office where all systems are in place or working as a security guard at a bank with a gun and never ever getting a chance to shoot the bad guys- You are still doing a job well but in your mind you do not define it as such.

Many of your achievements do not find a place in the resume because job seekers think that an achievement is only about doing something great for which you are recognized and for which you get appreciation or awards. So add whatever you have implemented in your routine job functions as well, which have benefited the company

#Your bragging rights are yours in your CV. But be sure to explain the achievement in a factual manner.

4) Show your work experience with precision.

Most job seekers believe that a CV must be a historical record about themselves. They tend to describe what they have done in each of the companies that they have worked in. This often results in a lot of reading material without a sharp focus and expertise tends to get lost as hidden data in all that reading material.

Job descriptions tend to be common for a profession so you do not need to spell it out in great detail. Avoid lengthy descriptions about your roles and keep it short and factual. Work experience has to be well presented for each company.

#Remember that it is important to change the content of your job description for each of the companies you have worked for. You have to show different angles. Never give a common list of functions applying to all the companies you worked in.

5) Be factual and crisp about your information.

Avoid giving boring descriptions. Give facts and figures instead. Many jobseekers feel that using flowery or emphatic verbs show that you are dynamic. A person who is trying to get to the point of finding your expertise through the shortest possible route is not going to be impressed with verbosity.

Hiring managers and placement consultants are experienced in handling massive volumes of CVs at the screening level. They are experts in giving a quick reading with a sharp focus on looking out for expertise that connects to what they need. So your CV must direct them to information that will show them why you are good at your job so that they can take a decision on you being a good choice.

#Crisp, short and precise sentences are easy to understand, so focus on keeping it simple while showing your expertise.
A resume well laid out in design makes reading easy. This is a very important factor because it makes the recruiters’ job easier.

Remember a good CV will be as good as how accurately and effectively you can show why you are a good choice. The job market is a competitive place. You may be extremely good at your job or have wonderful achievements but your CV must communicate this to others to be effective. =======================================================A majority of professionals who are very good at their jobs do not express it effectively or clearly! To know if your CV is effective and highlights your skills and expertise, send it for a FREE evaluation and feedback to : limasehgal@gmail.com

7 Secrets For Succeeding At Job Interviews

Most of us are a little apprehensive and nervous about attending interviews. It could be because we really need to get that job for better prospects or simply because it is our dream company which we wish to join. The interview result will show us what our job-market worth is, which is also a scary prospect.

It would help to remind yourself about why you have been called for an interview in the first place. It is because the basics about you is alright. If you were unfit on the basis of your CV then they would not have called you. The interviewer wants to know first – hand if you can do the job and fit into the organization.

I have been on both sides of the interview table and I think the solution lies in understanding what has to be conveyed and communicated, and I can assure you that there is no magic pill for that.

Here are 7 essentials for succeeding at job interviews.

1) Don’t neglect the basics

– Dress in appropriate attire and be well groomed. When in doubt go for formal attire acceptable in that country or city.

– Be on time. It is obvious, but it is also amazing how last minute hitches get you late- Check the route, allow for traffic and make sure that you are early enough to catch your breath and relax for 15 minutes before the interview.

– Creating the first impression starts even before the interview. So be pleasant to everyone- the receptionist, the junior kid who is coordinating, the assistant of the interviewer, or someone offering you a drink. And never sit at the reception of an office and converse continuously on your mobile phone. Most people consider it bad manners.

– Relax – it creates good body language. Desperation, nervousness and tension show. Consciously try to relax. Do some deep breathing. And make sure your hands are not sweaty because a handshake with a sweaty palm puts people off.

– Keep your documents organized. Carry several copies of your CV. Keep your cell phone switched off. When you are called, enter confidently, smile and wish everyone present giving full eye contact.

Remember the person on the other side of the table is a human being not a warrior you have to defeat. So be respectful, courteous. Smile, be nice but be formal.

2) Do your homework to know & show your interest in the company

The best way to convey that you are interested in the company and job is to do your homework. Research the company thoroughly before an interview. By doing this, you will be able to answer well when interviewers ask you questions like: What do you know about our company? What are our products? Who are our competitors? How can you add value to our company?

You can ask a few questions at the interview but never ask about the basics of the company’s activities and products/ services. Also go through the job requirement you are applying for. Do not demand a full briefing at the interview.

# Do your homework- Research the company on Google. Check out their website. Hunt for their latest press releases. Check out their social media presence. Research on Linkedin by searching the profiles of other employees working there.

3) Focus on communication not performance

An interview is a communication between people not a judgment call on your brilliant interview performance.

Remember you are not delivering a recital about how great you are. You have to convey through your conversation and discussion why you would be suitable for the post, what you can contribute and why you fit in.

# Listen and respond. If someone asks you a question, stick to answering it rather than delivering a sales pitch on your greatness.

4) Discussing holidays and work timings is avoidable

Most people universally believe that a candidate who is a stickler for holidays and work timings is not flexible and is self centered. This is because companies want to believe that a candidate is coming with the promise of delivery. Even if the cost is unreasonable- like working on all holidays, company before family or being available on beck and call at all times.

# Avoid discussing holidays and timings at an interview. Focus on other things like the job you have to handle.

5) Salary Negotiation

How much should you expect? This is a tough question.

Never talk about salary unless it is brought up by the interviewer. It is avoidable to discuss salary at an early stage before impressions are made and you get some idea from the interviewer on what the company has in mind.

Do you have the correct inputs on what the company is offering? Do you know the structure of the perks and benefits the company has? Does the company have fixed grades? These are aspects that can be researched before an interview or one can simply reach this point towards the end of an interview when both parties are ready and interested. That is when you can probe for this kind of information.

Not negotiating at all may not be advisable as it can show desperation but aggressive hard line negotiation is also not advisable.

# Don’t commit. Saying you expect a jump over you present salary- like 20- 30% is okay or it can be more if you are sure that your market value supports it. Say that you would like to know what the company has in mind. You cannot negotiate unless you know at what level the negotiation starts. A benchmark has to be established. Don’t presume anything. You may even get a good deal without bargaining.

6) Be alert and attentive

Listen carefully to what is being said and asked. If you are thinking while someone is talking to you then you are not really listening. This is not good because then you are not going to be accurate in your response.

You will be asked questions about yourself, your achievements, your shortcomings, how your involvement saved or made the company money, reduced expenses, solved problems, saved time, etc. Be prepared to talk and answer.

# Keep a sharp focus. Give direct answers. You can ask questions if you want, but keep it very brief.

7) End the interview well and send a follow up mail.

It is the interviewer who decides when the interview is over. Make your exit well. Thank the interviewer and for the opportunity and time spent with you.

#Follow up after your interview. You can send a mail including the following points:

– Thank the interviewer . If there were more people present then mention them in the note. Remind the interviewer why you would be useful to the organization. Give a brief summary of how your skills and experience fit into the role they are looking to fill.

– Remind them about you. Try to be specific. You can quote a specific aspect that you discussed in the interview. It may help to them to remember you in case they have been meeting several candidates.

– If there is any new information that you missed during the interview you can cover it briefly in your mail.

– Your follow up email should be kept brief and only cover the essential information. Your mail should act as merely a reminder and be sent within 24 hours of the interview.

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So go ahead – Listen attentively, talk and answer keeping these 7 points in mind. If you come across as a good, genuine person who can work well and deliver, then – “You have got the Job!”

If you need any advice regarding interviews, please feel free to contact me at limasehgal@gmail.com and I will gladly answer your questions.

If you need help getting to the interview stage, send your CV to limasehgal@gmail.com for a FREE evaluation and tips on how to create your CV perfectly in order to get noticed in the job market.

Copyright © 2015, Lima Sehgal
Lima Sehgal is Publisher, Author and Career Solutions Specialist.