A CV, or résumé, is often the only document which employers will see before deciding whether to bring you to interview or continue with the application process. Because of this, your CV must be easy to read and highlight your achievements both in education and work experience.

It is a chance to big yourself up. After all, when you apply for a job, you want to show that you are the best suited applicant for the role. We have developed this CV guide to help you create a plan of action when it comes to creating, updating or revamping your CV.

A Well-Crafted CV

While you may have tons of things you want to include on your CV, try to keep it short and simple. Make it easy to navigate and try not to make it longer than one A4 page. Remember, companies can receive hundreds of applications for one role. They want to be able to shortlist fast, so learn how to make a CV that is clear and ordered.

Tailor to Your Industry

You may have had many jobs which, if you included them all on your CV, would make it pages long. The key to overcoming this is to pick out the jobs which have the most relevance to the one you are applying for.

Give detail of your responsibilities and achievements in those roles, and then mention the other positions you held and across which dates elsewhere on the document.

You could list the less-relevant ones in a box to the side, or simply underneath the rest of the experience.

Whatever the job is that you are applying for, our CV and Cover Letter review service offers guidance and suggestions for improvement. Our team or experts can edit and recommend changes, if you would like a second opinion once you have drafted it.

What to Include

Here is a basic checklist of the sections you should have on your CV:

  • Your Name
  • Updated Contact Details
  • Job History – most recent job first
  • Education -where and when you studied, plus the grades achieved
  • Additional Skills – relevant awards or training to help showcase your suitability to the role
  • Hobbies & Interests – if you can relate it to the work you are looking for, great, but it is an opportunity to show your personality. Try not to make it too generic, otherwise don’t do it.


Most CV’s aren’t created in a few minutes. Be prepared to re-jig elements of the document and the layout to fit everything on.

Here’s how to make a CV that encompasses everything about you. Write out all of the information you want to include and accept that you may have to shorten it down to highlight the ‘best bits’.

There are plenty of templates online if you are looking for something fancy. If you would prefer to keep it traditional, follow our CV guide template here.

Headers for Different Sections

You want your CV to be as easy as possible to navigate, and headers are the best way to do this.

Introduce your job history, education and interests under separate headers, and use sub-headings to further distinguish between roles and educational institutions.

The additional benefit of this is, when you upload your CV to an online application form, the forms can pick out information from the right areas, saving you some time!

Bullet Points

Keep it concise. Whether this is your first job or your twenty-first, recruiters still want to be able to skim your document for the most important information.

When you are pushed for space, bullet points come in very handy. They can summarise sentences in a fraction of the word count without losing any vital information.

Prioritise your bullet points; put the most relevant things at the top and the less important bits nearer the bottom.

Professional Fonts

You can probably make your own judgement as to which fonts look more professional than others. Going with the default on your program will usually do the job. From our experience and for the purposes of our CV guide, some of the most professional fonts include Arial, Tahoma and Times New Roman.

Obviously, don’t go for anything too crazy. Even if a company is asking for an out-of-the-ordinary CV, there is probably more than you can do with the design of it than with the fonts.

Use font sizes to differentiate between sections of your CV. You may also consider making the font a little smaller if you have lots to include. Be sensible about it, though. Don’t make the font tiny; recruiters should still be able to read it clearly.

Cover Letters

With every CV that you submit for a position, you should include a Cover Letter. Whether the job ad specifies it or not, it is best practice.

Your Cover Letter is where you can explain in more detail why you are the ideal fit for the role you are applying for. You can go into a little more depth about your relevant experience and tie it into the job requirements.

Perhaps one of the most important points in this CV guide is this. Tailor your Cover Letter to every single position you apply for. Mention the company and why it appeals to you. While you can send the same CV out to similar companies, take the time to personalise the Cover Letter to the position. This is much more likely to get you noticed and show that you are keen.

Structuring your Cover Letter

Start with an introduction to yourself and state the position which you are applying for. It is also helpful to put your contact details on there, too.

Explain why you want to work with the company and what you can bring to the role. Try and balance it so that you show what the job would mean for you as well as the value that you will bring to the company.

Mention your relevant experience and achievements, and if you feel like it is natural, you can include a little personality to help your application stand out.

At the end of your Cover Letter, thank the recruiter for taking the time to read the application. Tell them you are looking forward to hearing from them and sign off.

The Road to CV Success

We hope that our CV guide has provided you with all of the information on how to make a CV that showcases the very best of you and your achievements. Remember that your CV and Cover Letter go hand in hand to compliment one another, so you should take time in preparing them both.

At Express Proofreading we offer a specialist CV review service where we will review and edit your CV to ensure that it is the best that it can be. We also offer a CV and cover letter proofreading service for which you can obtain an instant proofreading quote by visiting our instant quote page.