Presentation on theme: "SECL: CVs and Applications Mock Job Event"— Presentation transcript:
1 SECL: CVs and Applications Mock Job Event Employability AdviserNicola UrquhartSECL: CVs and ApplicationsMock Job Event
2 Introduction What is employability? Common mistakes found in CVs How to write a successful CV and covering letterPoints to help your applicationWhere you can access further helpQuestions
3 What is Employability?‘A set of attributes, skills and knowledge that all labour market participants should possess to ensure they have the capability of being effective in the workplace – to the benefit of themselves, their employer and the wider economy.’ (CBI, March 2009)
4 Why are employability skills so important? Increased competition – over 400,000 graduates leaving university each year.‘Our latest UK recruitment campaign closed having attracted c The bank will offer c.475 places in 2012.’ HSBC newsletter April 2012
5 What employers say…"Few students are able to articulate what they have gained from their experience in higher education." (Association of Graduate Recruiters, 1995)Nic
6 Research by forum3 found: Average graduate will send out 70 CVs when looking for their first graduate job. The average number of responses is 7 including 4 rejections and the remainder inviting the graduate to interview or further contact.The more CVs you send out the more interviews you will get but avoid a scattergun approach.
7 What is the purpose of a CV? To inform the employer about your education, work experience, skills and interestsTo show how you meet the criteria so the employer can not deselect youTo ‘sell’ your qualities and to persuade the employer to invite you to interview
8 When should a CV be used?When an employer asks for an application in that formatWhen an employer states ‘apply to…’ without specifying the formatWhen making speculative applicationsWhat is a speculative application?Writing to an employer who has not actually advertised a vacancy but who you hope may have one
9 Where can it go wrong… Too long Untargeted Confusing layout Process focused resulting in a ‘passive’ CVIncorrect grammarIncorrect spelling
10 Where can it go wrong … Out of date contact details 4/6/2017Where can it go wrong …Out of date contact detailsWrong application methodNo covering letterApplication never reaches intended destinationApplication arrives late
11 Why you need to use a spell checker I am a prefectionist and rarely if if ever forget details.Proven ability to track down and correct erors.I have good writen comunication skills.Develop an annual operating expense fudget…
12 And why you must read it carefully as well Extra Circular ActivitiesAt secondary school I was a prefixOver summer I worked for an examinations bored. (Kent BA English graduate!)I hope to hear from you shortyI am a conscious individual.I have a desire to work with commutersDear Madman (instead of Madam)My hobbits include - instead of 'hobbies'
13 Choose a sensible email address for your CV: Google yourself what impression are you giving employers! Facebook etc
14 What makes an effective CV and covering letter Right formatWell presentedProof read/consistent tensesYou have included all the necessary informationYour skills and abilities are clearly evidencedConveyed your understanding and enthusiasm for the jobTargeted it to the job
15 What does it need to contain? Personal detailsEducation and qualificationsWork experienceSkillsInterests and additional informationReferences
16 Different types Reverse Chronological (p.12) outline your career history in date order, normally beginning with the most recent items. The "conventional" approach and the easiest to prepare.Skills-based (p.14)highly-focused CVs which relate your skills and abilities to a specific job.work well for mature applicants and for those whose qualifications and work experience are not directly relevant to their application.
17 Chronological In date order (starting with the most recent first) e.g. EMPLOYMENTApril – December 2011: Venture – Editing AssistantWorking with Photoshop, I have learnt various editing styles. I have gained customer service experience and understand the importance of listening to what customers want in order to achieve high sales.February 2009 – March 2010: Topshop – Retail AssistantMy interest in fashion enabled me to help customers and to suggest styles that might suit them. I helped to design the layout of the stock in the store, with an aim to increase our revenue by positioning various items in ‘eye-catching’ places.
18 Skills Based Focusing on skills e.g. SKILLS Attention to detail – as an Editing Assistant at Venture, I needed to prove that I could spot any mistakes or flaws in the photographs, as well as being attentive to the requests of the customersComputer skills – I regularly used Photoshop during my time at Venture. I am also a competent user of Microsoft Office, which I proved throughout my time as a Retail Assistant at Topshop, where I was often required to produce reports on our salesCustomer service – in all of my roles, customer service has been of key importance. I have experience of dealing with difficult customers, and try to ensure that every customer is satisfied with the service they have received.
19 However don’t be constrained by headings. Scholarships/AwardsVoluntary workRelevant experiencePositions of responsibilityPublication/PresentationsConferences attendedResearch skillsAdditional skillsLanguages
20 PRESENTATION OF YOUR CV (p.10) The first visual impression your CV makes is importantFormatting – make sure it’s consistentSize font (depending on font style)Clear font e.g. Arial, CalibriUse plain white or pale A4 size paperCheck spelling.Use bold type and bullet points, but in moderationDo not double side.
21 Personal DetailsName (as a heading rather than ‘CV’)Website/online portfolio/CVAddress (term-time and home)Telephone numberaddressMake sure this is a professional addressThe following are not requirements, but if you wish, you can include: Nationality, Sex ,Date of birth
22 Hints on wording Avoid personal pronouns - No “I’s” Avoid producing a passive CVStart with verbs wherever possibleUse short sentences & concise phrasesFocus on accomplishmentsRefer to specific projects with quantifiable results
23 Make use of Action Verbs 4/6/20174/6/2017Make use of Action Verbscreated instructed analysed producednegotiated designed calculated maintainedadministered controlled reviewed observedconsolidated delivered founded increasedstudied invented supplied detectedprogrammed recommended distributeddeveloped solved prepared installed selectedarranged formulated solved started23
24 Education and Qualifications Start with the most recentDon’t forget your current studyMention relevant modulesProjects or dissertationYou might like to mention top marksYou don’t have to put your grades on if you weren’t happy with themPrimary school not needed
25 Work ExperienceThere is no need to list every job you’ve ever had – detail the most relevantDon’t just list your duties – sell your skills. Which skills are relevant to the position/company you are applying to?Dates, name of company, position and skills:
26 Either include a skills section or make sure your skills are evidenced throughout your application. Verbal communicationTeamworkCommercial awarenessAnalysing and investigatingInitiative and self motivationDriveWritten communicationPlanning and organisingFlexibilityTime management.
27 Additional Information Choose interests and activities which can demonstrate skills relevant to the job such as:TeamworkOrganisingCommitmentYour intellectual abilityYour personalityIF YOU HAVE LANGUAGE SKILLS PUT THIS ON YOUR CV!
28 References Ideally, one academic and your manager Ask permission from your reference and let them know what position(s) you’ve applied forUse relevant references if possibleYou can say ‘references available on request’ rather than including contact details if you wish
29 There are two types of covering letters: Never send a ‘naked’ CVThere are two types of covering letters:SpeculativeLetter of application
30 What about the covering letter? (P.24) 4/6/20174/6/2017What about the covering letter? (P.24)One side of good quality A4 paperFormal/conventional layoutAddressed to a named personState position applied for & where advertisedExplain why applyingConvince the reader of your interest & suitabilityGive dates when available/can startSign off “Yours sincerely” (if sent to named person)30
31 Accompanying letter Should be three short paragraphs Opening paragraph – why you are writingParagraph 2 – show knowledge of employer, highlight your skillsParagraph 3 – Refer to your CV and availability
32 Matching up your CV with the position/company It is not ‘one size fits all’, you need to tailor your CV to each position you apply for.Research the organisation. Do they have a mission statement or core values? What will they be looking for in you? Who works there at the moment? What are they passionate about?If you know someone at the company, ask them for advice.You have a chance to show evidence of how your values match those of the company.
33 You need to tailor your CV EVERY time CVs are normally targeted on a particular jobWhat tasks would the daily routine involve?What skills would the job call for?What type of personality would suit the job?
34 Mock Job Read CAREFULLY over all information. Highlight key points and messagesRead the key accountabilities and responsibilities – highlight key themes.Pay particular attention to the ‘Person Specification’Firstly look at the ‘essential’ criteria – how can you demonstrate you meet this criteriaThen look at the ‘desirable’ criteria and consider how you can demonstrate this.Use the follow up links providedFind out what is happening in the sector.
35 What are the key words in this advert. Communication Languages Income Increasing applications Student experience Admissions Co-ordinating Website Events Monitoring Social media Managing relationships
36 Person specification – Possible evidence. Excellent IT and numeracy skillsExperience of dealing with social networking sitesGood interpersonal skills and the ability to relate students, academics and support staff at all levels.Ability to assess outcomes of work and constantly review processes to improve themEnthusiastic and self motivated with a positive attitudeFlexibility and the ability to respond positively to changing priorities in the workplace.A good team worker who is able to work across all areas of the School and form good working relationships at all levels.
37 Do some additional research I want to work in ...What can I do with a...Employability SkillsApplications and InterviewsExample CVsCV ChecklistCareers Employability Award on moodle
38 Joining it all together. What the employer wantsWhat is my evidenceQualificationsRequested SkillsInterpersonal skillsOrganisational skillsCustomer service skillsTeam working skillsCertificatesJobs/internships/ work experience, travel, academic experience, voluntary work, clubs and societies, projects, essays, committee work etc
39 Social Media tools can help you develop and showcase your employability skills. LinkedInBusiness and customer awareness, self motivationTwitterCommunication, capacity to developBloggingCommunication, drive and resilience, positive attitude, ability to work independently.
40 What is a good application? TargetedAccurateInterestingEnthusiasticEasy to readGood LayoutProof read
41 Further Information CES booklet “Making Applications” Come along to Careers and Employability Service on 24th and 25th May between 2pm and 5pm- Bring your CV with you.Use CES Drop In sessions for quick querySpeak to me after this session