Each cover letter needs to be unique and tailored to the actual job you are applying for. The covering letter should show how you tick all the boxes and that you are the best person for the job.
Resume or CV (Curriculum Vitae)
CV is not different to a resume. It is a summary about your skills. Keep it brief. It should be simple and easy to read. The best resume is 1-2 pages. If you need to go over 2 pages, it is okay, however, you need to ensure everything you include is relevant to the job and how your skills match the job you are applying for.
The reason for a resume is to convince the recruiter or the Employer that you are the right person for the job and worth an interview.
Frequently Asked Questions – By the Interviewer
- Tell me about yourself
- Why did you apply for this vacancy and what interested you most in this position?
- What do you know about our Company?
- Why did you leave your last job? Or if you are employed, why do you want to leave your present job?
- What experience do you have in this role?
- Tell me about your strengths?
- Tell me about any areas that need improvement?
- Tell me about a time when you were in a difficult situation relevant to the position of course?
- Give me an example when you excelled under pressure or you had to deal with a difficult customer or you had to respond to a crisis.
- What salary range are you looking at for this position?
- What questions do you have for me?
- What are you looking for in this new position?
- What has been your biggest achievement to date.
- If I spoke to your previous boss what do you think he would say about you?
Questions – Interviewee can ask
- What can you tell me about the position on offer?
- Do you have a position description? (ask only if the PD was not in the advertisement)
- Are you expecting any internal candidates for this position?
Drafting A CV/Resume
Following are essential and need to be included:
- Personal Details
Full name and Contact details including address, telephone numbers and email address. Make sure you have a professional sounding email address. It could be as close as your real name as possible. Best place is at the header.
- Education and Training
Provide a Summary of your Education and Training, commencing with your most recent studies. Any professional development training or on the job training that is relevant to the job you are applying for.
Generally you need to start with your most recent job first and work backwards.
- Employer’s name
- Your Position Title
- Dates you worked
- Duties / Responsibilities
- Achievements during the time you worked for the Employer
- Ensure each page of your resume has page numbers and your full name.
You could have a professional profile that matches the job requirements to your skills. It should be a synopsis of your skills relevant to the job and encourage the recruiter to continue reading.
Quite a few recruiters tend to go straight to the resume and not read cover letters particularly when they have a lot of applications for a job. The professional profile should only be a few bullet points and must be relevant to the position.
Do Not Need
It is not necessary to include the following in your resume due to discrimination in employment.
- Date of Birth
- Marital Status
- Any other personal information
- Do not submit a resume with spelling errors. Always spell check prior to submitting a resume.
- If you mention the Company’s name, ensure you get it right.
- You do no need to include a photo unless it is requested you do not need to provide a photo. Certain jobs such as modelling or acting would require a photo.
How to prepare for the Interview:
- Give yourself plenty of time to get to the interview
- Research the role and the organisation
- Find out what the prospective Employer is looking for
- Think about how well your experience and skills match the job and the Company
- Anticipate questions you might be asked
- Find out if it is a one on one interview or a panel interview
- Plan your journey on the day of the interview
- Decide what you will wear on the day of the interview
- Suits and business wear is best
- Early night – we perform best when fully awake
- Arrive on time or a bit early
- Take a copy of your resume, your application letter and any written references that you may have.
- Carry a pen and notebook
- If you have a mobile phone with you switch it off
- Listen carefully, be alert and answer concisely
- Pay attention
- Maintain eye contact
- Non-verbal communication is noticeable
- Highlight your attributes
It is a general statement stipulating your career goals
It is not standard practice to provide referees or written references as part of the application. You still need to provide referees but it is not required in your resume. You could end your resume with a statement such as “References will be provided upon request”.