Earlier this week, we went in to a local college and talked to the students about a variety of things – including what they want to do after they qualify. We offered them some advice on writing a good CV and performing well at interview – and that’s the theme of our blog post today!
CV writing – Top Tips
What makes a good CV?
- Include your full contact details
- Open with a profile paragraph about yourself, summarising your key skills and goals
- List your career history, starting with your current/most recent position and working backwards
- Mention your daily duties and any skills you acquired – and be specific!
- List details of your education, again starting with your most recent qualification first
- You can include any information on volunteering or charity work, as well as your hobbies
- Take time to properly format your CV – presentation makes a huge difference! Choose a standard font, use bold headings, and title each section clearly
Things to avoid!
- Don’t list extensive details of past employment which aren’t relevant to your application
- Try to use bullet points rather than writing a long paragraph about each role
- Never complain about your current job! It’s important to stay professional
- Avoid weird fonts
- Don’t be too modest! Make sure you display your true abilities, and believe in yourself
Interviewing – Top Tips
- Plan your journey well ahead of time, and try to arrive slightly early
- Thoroughly research the organisation and practice you are interviewing at, considering things such as the history of the practice and how they market themselves
- Think about any questions you might want to ask your interviewer, such as whether or not they have any plans for development, and how you might be able to progress within the group
- Consider answers to any questions they might ask you, such as when you have implemented a new idea or dealt with a difficult situation
- Plan your outfit! That might sound silly, but you’ll thank yourself when you avoid the last minute stress of what to wear the morning of your interview…
On the day…
- Arrive around fifteen minutes early
- Establish eye contact, smile, stand up straight and offer a confident handshake – first impressions really do count
- Think about each answer before you say it. This will help you speak directly and clearly, without rambling, and will show you are considering the questions properly
- Engage in conversation and be yourself. The client will be looking for someone whose personality fits the team, so let your character shine through
- Be confident and don’t underestimate yourself!
Example interview questions…
These may sound cliché but it’s definitely worth preparing answers for these questions, and they are generally asked at interview!:
- Why have you chosen us? What do you know about our practice?
- Why have you chosen this career path?
- What are your long-term career goals?
- What benefits can you bring to our existing team?
- What area/s would you like to specialise in?
- Can you give an example of a time you’ve gone above and beyond?
- Can you give an example of a time you have resolved a difficult situation?
Most importantly, be yourself and be confident. If you ever need any help with your CV or interview preparation, feel free to get in touch with us here at VN Recruitment and we’d be more than happy to lend an eye and offer any advice you might be looking for.