10 Must-have Things to Include in a CV in 2024 - A Guide to Writing Attention-grabbing CVs

10 Must-have Things to Include in a CV in 2024 - A Guide to Writing Attention-grabbing CVs

Still thinking about where you needed to improve in the last interview? Or is it hard to believe that your CV outlook would have saved you from rejection?

You may be well prepared for the interview. You may have studied the job role and company in detail, but a minor mistake in your CV can ruin all your preparation. Usually, recruiters need more time to go through a bundle of CVs. Only those that are well-designed and better formatted catch their attention. 

Not only this, but a clutter-free CV allows employers to go through your CV, allowing you to showcase your potential and capabilities effectively. 

key statistics; blue pie chart representing percentage of recruiters

83% of recruiters indicate that they are more inclined to hire a candidate with a well-formatted resume. The percentage itself speaks to the importance of CV formatting. 

So, if you are a job seeker or drafting your CV to get your dream job, formatting your resume is as important as preparing for an interview. You should know what sections you should include in your CV and what a recruiter will look into

Let’s understand CV formatting and the 10 most important things to include in a CV. 

CV Sections and Formatting

key statistics; blue pie chart representing CV formatting 

Understanding what sections a CV has and how to format it is essential. This helps draft an effective CV to get your employer’s attention on your profile. Also understand how to draft and format your technical resume here

Different types of Sections

Core CV sections 

  • Applicant information: This section includes your personal and contact details like name, address, phone number, email address, and Date of Birth. Even a CV can be detailed, which might need family background details, too. 
  • Education: This section includes information about your education. Starting from the recent highest qualification to the rest of the qualifications, followed in reverse chronological order. Also, one can mention any coursework and academic achievements. 
  • Experience: This section includes the candidate’s work experience details. It has your working history, beginning from scratch, with all minor and major details of where you have worked and how much you have contributed to that company’s growth. Also your experience will represent your professional growth
  • Other Credentials: This is always an additional section where you can add any course, achievement, or presentation work relevant to the job opening you are applying for. This will support your profile to get close to your dream job

Optional Sections

  • Hobbies: not all employers may be interested in this section, but adding this can be beneficial. Sometimes, some employers might be interested in areas beyond your professional area. So add hobbies that can be added on yet are relevant, like reading nonfiction books or playing sports. 
  • Languages: If you are bilingual or speak multiple languages, you can add this section by mentioning what languages you know and your proficiency level. Sometimes, you can get the advantage of knowing regional languages. For example, applying for a job in Mumbai with knowledge of Marathi can be a plus point. 
  • References: Typically, you can list your references directly on your CV or state that references are available upon request. If you list them, include each reference's name, title, organization, and contact information.

How to Format CV 

  • Choose a Professional Font: Most CVs are online nowadays, so having a readable CV is important. Use easy-to-understand professional fonts like Arial, Calibri, or Times New Roman. And the font size should be between 10 & 12 for the body text. Headings should be more significant than the rest. 
  • Use Clear Headings: Most of the time, the interviewers might not look deep into your CV at first glance; they may need more time, or the number of CVs might be too many to look into details. They sometimes go through what section heading you have, so mention every section clearly and make it readable. This saves your employer time and you from being ignored at first glance. 
  • Keep It Concise: Keep your CV concise to save your employer’s time. Lengthy CVs can be tedious and hefty to go through quickly. Add only relevant information; you can cover the rest in interview rounds. Also, depending on your experience level, keep the number of pages in your CV.
  • Use Bullet Points: Always bullet points are better than paragraphs in CVs. They allow employers to focus on crucial information without making them feel exhausted. Bullet points help you clearly mention your information, and employers can find the relevant information they seek. 
  • Maintain Consistent Formatting: All CV pages and sections should sync in the same style and theme. It should not look like pages from different CVs. The style of bullet points, line spacing, and heading fonts should be consistent throughout your CV.  
  • Highlight Important Information: While formatting your CV, keep important information highlighted. Use bold to highlight the information or underline it to catch your employer’s attention to them. It can be your job titles, contact information, or achievements. But make sure you don't over-highlight your CV. Make it clear. 
  • Use White Space: While drafting a CV, make sure you have enough free space to make it look clutter-free. Make it easier for employers to skim through your CV without cramming too much information. 
  • Proofread: Check your CV for spelling and grammatical errors. Consider asking someone else to review it as well.
  • Save in the Right Format: Save your CV in a widely accepted format, such as PDF, to ensure it looks the same on any device or platform.

10 Things to Include in a CV

  1. Contact Information: The most important thing to be included is contact information. For any purpose, contacting you for extra details, calling for an interview, reaching out for confirmation, etc. 

This includes: 

  • Full name 
  • Phone Number 
  • Email Address 
  • LinkedIn profile 
  • Any other relevant profile link for creative professionals. 
  1. Professional Summary: An overall overview of your professional profile allows employers to make your first impression. It saves time by letting them know about your career aim. 

This includes: 

  • Qualifications 
  • Work experience 
  • Career objectives 
  1. Work experience: Always mention your work profile history in reverse chronological order. This section is critical for employers to understand your expertise. 

This includes: 

  • Job roles
  • Company names 
  • Roles and responsibilities 
  • Contributions 
  • Achievements  
  • Paper presentations 
  1. Education: It is as important as work experience. Mention these in reverse chronological order. This allows employers to understand what you have learned and the knowledge you possess. 

This includes: 

  • Degrees
  • Educational institutions
  • Graduation dates 
  • Achievements 
  1. Skills: This represents your potential for the job applied. Employers will look into the relevant skills required for the job. 

This includes: 

  • Hard skills 
  • Soft skills 
  1. Achievements: These allow employers to know what you have achieved in the name of recognition and award. This shows how excellent you are in your field. Achievement always catches the employer's attention to Cvs. 

This includes: 

  • Awards 
  • Publications
  • Successful projects 
  1. Professional Memberships: Mention any associations or organizations you're a member of that are relevant to your field.
  2. Volunteer Experience: Include any unpaid work demonstrating your skills, commitment, and community involvement.
  3. Languages: List any additional languages you speak and your proficiency level if it's relevant to the job.
  4. References: While it's common to state "References available upon request," you can also include the contact information of one or two references if space allows.

Formatting a CV is essential as well as tricky. Alignment and making minor changes in your CV can change the outlook of your profile. It can either help you to get the job or not. It would help if you had a helping assistant to draft an effective CV. 

Well, worry not! We have a right helping partner for you to elevate your professional profile - getCREDIBLE

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However, getCREDIBLE's offerings go beyond. We provide an innovative, interactive platform that allows you to document and display your professional milestones through a 'Slate.' Your Slate serves as a living record of your career trajectory. Critical features of getCREDIBLE include:

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Proper Curriculum Vitae (CV) formatting is essential for job seekers to make a strong impression on potential employers. A well-formatted CV allows candidates to clearly present their skills, experiences, and achievements, making it easier for employers to assess their suitability for a role.

Tools like getCREDIBLE can be instrumental in creating a polished and professional CV. With its innovative features, getCREDIBLE can help job seekers showcase their qualifications and accomplishments in a structured and visually appealing way. This not only enhances the readability of the CV but also highlights the candidate's attention to detail and professionalism.

Consider using getCREDIBLE to refine your CV formatting and improve your chances of standing out in the job market. A well-crafted CV is crucial to securing your desired position and advancing your career.

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