How To Write an effective Curriculum Vitae (CV)

How To Write an effective Curriculum Vitae (CV)

The Concept Of Personal Branding

In today’s marketplace, it’s tough to stand out. Good grades and lots of extra-curricular activities will not guarantee that you will land the job of your dreams, or that you will even land an interview. There are many qualified candidates out there. The secret to standing out is to impress recruiters with the unique and authentic you in person, on paper, and online.

Your personal brand matters. Your brand is your reputation. It is your calling card. It is what you are known for and how people experience you. It is about bringing who you are to what you do and how you do it. Delivering your brand clearly and consistently will create a memorable experience in the minds of those you interact with and can open doors to new opportunities. As a job seeker, the competition to get jobs is intimidating; thousands of graduates are awarded bachelors or master’s degrees every year and they enter the job market. How you brand yourself as expressed in your resume/Curriculum Vitae (CV) determines whether you get that job opportunity or you miss out. To enhance your personal brand, it is important to know how to write an effective CV.



Writing an effective Curriculum Vitae (CV)

A curriculum vitae is a written summary of personal, educational, working experience and qualifications intended to demonstrate an applicant’s fitness for a particular position.

They are an opportunity to show an employer why you are an ideal candidate for the job.

A good CV will:

  • Stand out from the crowd.
  • Draw attention to your relevant skills, experience, achievements and potential.
  • Create an impression on the employer, such that they will not turn you down for the interview.

The important thing to remember is that this is the first impression an employer will have of you. It is your marketing brochure through which you are trying to sell yourself.


Importance of a good Curriculum Vitae

  1. CV provides serious intent to seek work and a willingness to do a little bit extra, both of which are desirable characteristics in an employee.
  2. Its major purpose is to obtain a job interview in the first place.
  3. Because a CV is a personal advertisement that creates a first impression for the client, it is important enough to spend time creating it.
  4. When writing a CV it is important to attend not only to the content i.e. your qualifications and experiences but also design and format.
  5. A CV which is not pleasant to look at and easy to read is likely to receive scanty attention from employers and therefore fail in its purpose.

 Possible contents of a good Curriculum Vitae.

A good CV should have the following main content areas.

  • Personal Details.
  • Personal profile/Career objective or ……….
  • Other headings….. Summary, achievements …..
  • Education and qualifications.
  • Work experience.
  • Skills profile.
  • Interest/ extra-curricular activities.
  • References


Structure of a Curriculum Vitae.

  1. Personal Detail

Include your full name, home address, mobile number and email address. Your date of birth is irrelevant and unless you are applying for an acting or modelling job you do not need to include a photograph.

b) Personal profile

Personal profile is most of the times optional. Sometimes it might also be called ‘career objective’ or ‘summary’. Its purpose is to highlight key points that you want an employer to know about you for example, skills, and experience and career objective. When writing this section, always keep in mind that less is more. Write one to three sentences, with a maximum of four. The language to use should be Strong and positive.

c) Education

Education details should be in reverse chronological order that is most recent first. For oversees qualifications, show the name of the qualification and indicate a Kenyan equivalence. Getting school names correct is critical to avoid confusion in case the employer decides to look them up.

d) Work experience

Under the work experience section ,include fulltime, part time and voluntary work and work placements in reverse chronological order (most recent first).You should indicate dates you were there , your job title as well as the employer organization name, broad location and if helpful, the nature of their business. Most people make a mistake by listing mundane duties e.g. tidying floor, photocopying thus making their CV boring. Focus on the skills you have used and your achievements. Using positive language is highly encouraged as negative language could taint the idea the employer has started forming about you. If you have had several similar jobs, you can group this together to avoid repetition of duties and consider using bullet points rather than lengthy paragraphs.


e) Skills profile

Include a skills section to capture the reader’s attention by making it clear what you can offer. Use a brief bulleted list of the skills and key strengths that you possess that are relevant to the role, such as software packages you have worked with and back them up with evidence.

You can identify relevant skills through the job description, the person specification, the job advert, the organizations website, occupational research and sector research.

f) Interests and achievements

This section is optional. Do not include this section on your CV for the sake of it. Think about what the information adds to your CV. What are you trying to get across? How will it help to persuade the employer to interview me?

Avoid using the heading ‘hobbies’. Only include things which you are happy to be questioned about in an interview.

g) References

They are often used in the final stages of the selection and contain the contact details of your references. (Name, address, job title, telephone no. mail address) however if you prefer not to include details on your CV, you can say ‘References available on request’.

Typically two referees- one academic and the other preferably work related are provided. Before writing someone as your reference, it is courteous to always check with the referees first.


Make your C.V better with us!

Do you think your C.V is effective? Test it by applying for the many positions available under the Finstock Evarsity Jobs Page

Finstock Evarsity Job page:

You can also test your C.V effectiveness by applying for a tutor position (Career portal) at Finstock Evarsity College.

If you feel that your C.V needs sprucing up, write to us on

Or WhatsApp us on +254703313722 and request for a C.V building quote and this may open doors to job interviews and finally landing you the dream job.

Related links

Finstock Evarsity Job

Finstock Evarsity tutor application



How To Write an effective Curriculum Vitae (CV)

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