Your CV: Does it pass the 6-second filter?
Your CV: Does it pass the 6-second filter? Having your work history collected in a single base document will be of great help to later develop your value proposal for each company. Do not forget either that any online profile is also a CV, as is the case with LinkedIn, and therefore although today we are referring to the classic CV , part of what you are going to read can also be used for your communication on social networks.
Two types of communication coexist in a curriculum: verbal and non-verbal. There are components – which are not the written words, but the format and presentation – that can also score goals for or against you depending on how you use them.
The impact of your Curriculum Vitae can lead you to succeed
According to recent cognitive studies, based on eye-tracking , in the first screen the recruiter only spends 6 seconds reading each CV . At this point his unconscious mind already decides whether he “fits in” or not. It’s like when you meet someone and from the first impression you sense that there will be a feeling or not. Later, and if time permits, he will read the resumes more carefully, an average of 20 seconds for each one.
The popular saying goes that “the occasion is painted bald”, so we are going to make an interesting CV at first glance. Not pretty, interesting!, that generates a first positive link.
One piece of information you may find useful is knowing what recruiters look for first. The studies confirm what we already knew, and is that there is a general pattern. Next, we indicate the areas to which the recruiter directs his gaze before.
6 fundamental aspects of your CV to take into account
1. General appearance of the CV
As for the general appearance, clarity and ease of reading can increase the attractiveness of your CV by between 40% and 60% according to psychometric studies.
The font should be Arial, Verdana or similar. Avoid those that are more ornate or decorated, or excessively “original”.
You can use a maximum of two colors, that is, the black or gray of the text , combined with another if you wish, although it is better if it is discreet (except for very creative sectors, in which the CV must be that: creative)
Photography – when included – instantly grabs attention and is etched into memory. It predisposes positively when it is a professional image, appropriate to the position. Try to portray your best version.
2. Your name clearly visible
Aside from the photograph, if any, they are known to initially pay attention to the name. In this sense, writing the name clearly visible – even discreetly personalized – can help, leaving almost unnecessary data other than contact information. There is personal data such as address, DNI, date of birth or marital status that you can ignore and that, furthermore, because they are personal data, you do not legally have to include them. The issue that interests us here is that there are no data that subtract prominence from those that must be recorded:
Phone (Only one!)
E-mail address (Only one! And please don’t type fiestuky33@…..com or poetasfan@….com, but your first and last name, for example. If necessary, create a new “serious” account).
URL LinkedIn (Have a good profile on this network!)
Twitter account (Only if you use it regularly!)
Blog (If you have!)
In this particular phase, in general, the impression caused by receiving a CV with a lot of unnecessary data is of “old”, of a person who has not been updated or who has not bothered to find out what the recruiters should know.
It is true, and I am already anticipating some skeptical voices, that there are hundreds of CV models and that in many cases they include this type of data, but that there are many does not mean that they are right.
There is also no denying that there will be recruiters who prefer to see the age (or date of birth) of the person, but that leads us to another debate. From a communication strategy point of view, my recommendation for a candidate is not to put it, since it is likely that, not having the stumbling block of age, the selector will continue reading, thereby generating the opportunity to detect other strong points of the applicant of great value to the company.
3. Current title or position and company
This section is another fundamental for the recruiter. In it you must state when you have been working there or the date range . Place the position and the company name on different lines and use different typographic resources. For example, title in lowercase and bold, company in capitals, but without bold, and a smaller point depending on what you want to emphasize. Remember that bold is what they will see first.
If you want to highlight the positions held, highlight them:
In the case of well-known companies, you may want to change the order while maintaining the size:
If you use capital letters do not use bold, only one resource at a time . And it is essential that you follow the same criteria for all positions.
Just below is where you should take pains to explain the most significant in the development of your functions. Apply this maxim: “less is more”. Therefore, spend some time choosing the appropriate language , in this way you will not saturate the reader, you will focus attention on what interests you and you will give a feeling of being organized and competent.
To begin with, outline as much as possible using bullet points.
When explaining your functions, use words that connect with the sector (or company) you want to enter. For example, imagine the case of someone who worked in the health sector coordinating patient visits and applies for a position in the logistics department of a car manufacturer, which is to say apparently nothing to do with it. What you have to write are words that, being correct for healthcare, are also suitable for logistics or for cars: phases of the care process, scheduling of visits, distribution of reports and operation planning , operating room set-up, etc.
When the text is not outline but written, do not abuse the nouns ending in -ción.
If you do not have a specific position, but you are responsible for some function, value putting “Responsible for…”, but never play to inflate where there is none.
Include achievements if they are concrete or explainable in no more than one line.
Highlight in bold those keywords that you think the recruiter should see.
Avoid all superfluous information for the position. You should not be interested in saying everything you know, but knowing how to say just what is interesting .
4. Previous position or position and company
This section will be the next thing that the coach instinctively looks for. In this case, you must follow the previous approach, with an even more precise language and synthesizing as much as possible.
If, due to the vicissitudes of life, it were this job, this experience, that most connects with the position offered (let’s imagine that the person in the previous example, before working in the health field, had collaborated with a car tire company), then you should extend yourself more in this and in the “current position” be more synthetic.
You also have the option of making a chronological resume , starting with the older of the two jobs. This is doable if you only put these and omit the rest (another option for the rest is “Other Collaborations”). The decision depends on the relevance of the positions and the years they occupy in your history.
When putting date ranges do not include months , just start and end years separated by a hyphen, preferably in an easily visible place. A good format is this:
2012 – 2016 Camera Operator
2007 – 1012 Production Assistant
5. Training is also important in the CV
This is another one of the sections that a recruiter goes straight to and, if it is on the first page, it will certainly be the first thing they see.
It is not necessary to indicate whether the training is regulated or not , simply include a list of the training that you consider makes you suitable, along with other skills, for the job.
The courses and short courses that are not linked to the position do not make sense to put them, as well as the ESO studies (they distract attention from what is relevant). It goes without saying that you took it, it would only be recommended if you took it at a prestigious, recognized center or when you don’t have others.
Highlight in bold the title you have that is related to the job offered, regardless of the position you are in. It can be more than one.
Remember that the order of dates – direct or inverse — must be the same as that of the rest of the sections.
In the information you must indicate where you studied and at least the year in which you finished or it will give the sensation that you hide it and therefore you will generate doubt.
6. And the other sections of the CV?
The other sections are also read, but they are not among what they watch during the first 6 seconds . However, they will in the following seconds and minutes.
• Career goals
The company does not really want to know your objectives, but rather what you can contribute, so it is better to replace this section with “Professional profile”, a brief description of how you define yourself.
Here it is important to indicate your values , with a couple or three is enough, aligned with the company. You can even highlight them as a separate paragraph.
• Office automation
It’s not even necessary. They don’t look at it, it goes without saying that you know at least Office and the Internet, so by putting it on you give a feeling of “old”. Only very specific or infrequent programs would fit here.
They will look if you know mainly English. It is essential that the recruiter is clear about your level of knowledge, do not be ambiguous, clearly explain your level or your CV will go to the heap of doubtful people. Incorporate here any stay or internship you have done.
Nowadays, companies value the collaborative aspect of the candidates, which are a reflection of social values with which they like to be identified. Your volunteering is a good sales argument.
Recruiters scan CVs more or less quickly , from half a minute to several. However, the brain reacts without us being aware and the selector, as a human being, will involuntarily focus on the sections that we have explained.
Now it’s time for you to recover your old CV and update it so that it exceeds those 6 seconds!
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