The short answer is yes, you should tailor your CV. As a recruiter I see a wide variety of formats, styles and approaches to CV’s but the ones that really stand out are the ones that ‘check the boxes’ of my client’s requirements. With that being said, it is important to still be honest! Ensure you highlight relevant skills and experience, but if you say you have experience using a certain type of software or system because you think it will help you secure the job you are looking for, you will soon come unstuck when you are expected to complete tasks you simply cannot do.
So, what is the right approach? My advice is to think about the job you want to secure and then think about what skills you needed in your past roles that are applicable. Don’t just list your ‘key responsibilities’ as they would appear on your contract – think about what skills you use that are transferable to your dream job. For example, if you worked in retail and want to get into a customer service role then instead of putting ‘dealing with customers’ you could highlight ‘providing excellent levels of customer service’ and instead of ‘restocking items’ you could phrase it as ‘monitoring stock and ensuring relevant records are accurately maintained’.
Remember, your CV is your golden ticket to your future and if you want to take the next step in your career, or change paths completely, it is vital that you communicate to a potential employer why they should be giving you this opportunity over everyone else. Tailoring your CV can not only help demonstrate that you have transferable skills that can benefit their business, but also that you have the work ethic to really put effort into securing that job you’re dreaming of.
Nathan Hughes, Talent Spotter