• By Check-a-Salary
  • Posted Thursday 30 th June 2022

CV Writing Tips: How to Tailor Your CV to a Job Position You're Applying For

A CV has traditionally been a static document. However, changes in hiring practices and technology have forced a shift toward customised pieces. While the key components on your CV will remain the same, highlighting relevant features can increase your likelihood of success in the hiring process.

Here are some practical CV writing tips to help you tailor your CV to the job you're applying for.

Adjust Your Format As Appropriate

First, consider the overall format of your CV. The document and information included will look significantly different if you're applying as a trainee versus applying for an executive position. CV template UK experts also highlight the importance of choosing an overall format that suits industry best practices— for example, chronologically outlined, academic-centric, or skills-based.

While the general rule of creating a CV is to keep it simple and formal, with minimal colour, a serious typeface, and no photos, there are exceptions.

Those applying to a graphic design position would have more leeway with including colour and decorative elements. The key is knowing when to add these features and when to play it safe by assessing the overall tone of the brand.

Research the Company

As mentioned above, researching the company is essential for tailoring your CV. In addition to helping you assess the look and feel of the brand, it will also provide insights into what to highlight on your resume.

For example, if you see social media posts about the business working with a charitable organisation, highlighting your philanthropic experience would be an asset.

It's important to be mindful as you navigate the research process. Remain honest and don't overexaggerate your interests, experience, or skills to suit what the hiring organisation might like.


Adjust Your Profile for Relevance

The professional profile or summary is an essential part of your CV. This section should be at the top of your CV and highlight key takeaways about your professional experience, expertise, values, and goals.

As you research the company, look for intersection points between their culture, the job posting, and your background. Highlight aspects of your background that are more relevant to that company, switching out these traits to suit each job posting.

For example, highlighting your passion for movement and accomplishments as a marathon runner may not be relevant for most companies. However, if you're applying for a position with an athletic brand, this inclusion would showcase your value alignment and passion.

Use Relevant Keywords

One of the biggest challenges among modern job seekers is appealing to human hiring managers and automated applicant tracking systems (ATS).

An ATS is a computer program driven by artificial intelligence which prescreens candidates based on their CV or job application. The ATS scans for relevant keywords and then determines whether the application should be passed on to a human hiring manager for review.

The best way to find relevant keywords is to craft your CV to emulate the job posting. The original posting often contains the keywords an ATS platform is searching for. Tailoring your CV to include those words could ensure you get through the initial screening and have an opportunity to connect with a (human) hiring manager.

Key Takeaways

Tailoring your CV is a powerful way to resonate with potential employers and stand out against the competition. Take some time to research the company and the job posting, and use relevant descriptions and keywords.


Subscribe to our newsletter to get notified of new blog posts from Check-a-Salary