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Advice

We recognise how important your next career move is. To improve your prospects of achieving a fulfilling and rewarding career, we have outlined some of the most commonly asked questions which we hope you will find useful in your search for JobSuccess. We welcome the opportunity to work with you to achieve your objectives. We offer encouragement and support at every stage of your career change to ensure success in your chosen field. To contact us about any of our competitively priced services, please click here. .

CVs AND RESUMES

What Does CV mean?

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CV stands for curriculum vitae which is Latin for “the course of your life”. It is used in Europe, Australia and New Zealand and part of Asia and is similar to the American “Resume”. In order to apply for a job, you are almost always asked for a CV or a Resume. It sets out your career, achievements and experience you have had.

 

 

How would a prospective employer really know anything about me based on my Resume or CV?

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You’re probably going to put a lot of time and energy into your Resume and that’s very important. As a Resume is the first point of contact between you and an employer it is vitally important to make the right first impression. You may be thinking, “How does an employer learn anything about me from this piece of paper?” The employer has certain skills and characteristics that they need to have in their firm or for a particular kind of job. If your Resume or CV sends the message, “I have these skills and characteristics,” it’s worth the time for the employer to interview you. If it does not send that message, you probably won’t get the interview.

How can I make my Resume or CV really stand out against the competition?

Your Resume or CV is your key marketing tool – your marketing brochure if you will. A well designed, professional and error-free Resume can go a long way to getting you into the select group of applicants who will be offered interviews. People put so much effort into their Resume, they sometimes they ask, “How can I make it stand out against the competition?” That’s an understandable concern, but it’s misplaced.

Your goal is to be interviewed. You could cut your Resume or CV in the shape of a paper doll and it would stand out but it wouldn’t get you the interview. What will get you the interview? The employer has to make a business decision – is it worth their time to interview you? Do you have the skills and characteristics they need in their company or for a particular job? The skill is to provide the employer with a Resume or CV that contains the right balance of qualitative and quantitative information. If most applicants’ Resumes don’t achieve this, yours will stand out because it addresses the employer’s needs.

JOB APPLICATIONS

Can you outline the important steps in a successful job search campaign?

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Although identifying the job you really want is a critical first step on its own, it’s not enough to produce the desired outcome. Market research and a well-executed self-marketing campaign are needed to turn your goal into reality. In fact, career counsellors suggest turning your job hunt into an eight-hour-a-day, aggressive search in order to yield prime offers.

Firstly you must define what you want. Once you’ve defined what you want, go out and talk to people who are doing what you want to do. Ask them how they got into the field and what path they travelled prior to landing their current position. This process, often called information interviewing, is a valuable way to build your network of contacts inside organisations and your base of knowledge about fields and specific jobs you’re pursuing.

Secondly, have a detailed plan of action and stick to it. There’s no way anybody can stay organised without a written plan. Planning carefully lets you predict where you are going, allows you to track your time, evaluate your progress and make sure productivity is maximised. As good idea is to develop planning systems and a contact management process, including developing company profile information, contact reports and monthly/weekly goal settings.

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COVER LETTERS

How do I write a cover letter that adds value to my Resume or CV instead of repeating it?

In addition to a good Resume or CV, you want to have a cover letter that adds value to that Resume, instead of just repeating it. So how can you do that? There are several steps you can take. One is to reframe material that’s on the Resume in terms which are more familiar to the new, prospective employer. So, for example, if your Resume focuses on jobs and job titles, but your connection to the new employer is through a common industry, reframe the information on your cover letter about your experience in terms of the industry.

Secondly, there may be items on your Resume or CV, which are not highlighted, but are of particular importance to a new employer. You can highlight tcal-0814-cl1-office-18hose in the cover letter instead of the Resume or CV.

Third, there may be some new material which you felt didn’t really belong on the Resume but potentially has importance to a new employer. It belongs in your cover letter.

Fourth, you certainly want to have a statement about your motivation. Why do you want to work for that particular employer? What attracts you to that employer’s organisation? And what interests you about that particular job? Motivation is usually not stated on the Resume. You also want to close any credibility gaps that the Resume might present. For example, if you’ve been out of work for a period of time, or you’re changing functional areas or industries you want to readdress the issue. A good way to address any credibility problems is to make an upbeat statement about it in your cover letter.

When is a cover letter helpful in a job search?

Since a good cover letter adds value to your Resume or CV and shows that you’re serious about looking for a new job, it’s almost always helpful in a job search campaign.

 
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