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4 ways to stand out when applying for a job

The competition can be fierce when job hunting, which is why it’s so important to find ways to stand out amongst a sea of qualified job applicants.

We asked a selection of our experienced recruiters what a great candidate looks like, with some interesting results.

Keep it short, sweet and clean

  1. Aim to keep your CV concise.
  2. Use bullet points as opposed to text-heavy paragraphs.
  3. Start with your current position and bullet point your main responsibilities, highlighting any successes you have had in that. This is all they need to know, for now.
  4. Proof read your CV. It may be a good idea to ask a family member or friend to take a second look too as they may spot something you didn’t. Ensure a clear layout.
“If you’re a contractor who has over 10 years worth of experience, provide summary details of the most recent roles as normal, then condense anything older than 10 years into a brief list including company, job title and date. This will easily shred a few pages off your CV.”
Laura Bagguley
Senior Recruitment Consultant

A good example of how to set out your CV is as follows…

  • Contact details.
  • Brief overview (6-8 lines) of who you are, your career highlights and ambitions.
  • Qualifications and big achievements.
  • Work history starting with your most recent role.
  • Education.
  • Hobbies and interests.
“A well-presented CV says a lot about a candidate and with it being the first impression your potential future employer has of you, it’s vital it is well set out. Always remember to keep it neat and consistent. Stick to one font and size, try to stay away from using multiple colours and make it easy to scan through.”
Jane Moore
Recruitment Consultant

Be enthusiastic and confident

Ask yourself why you want this job so much and show your passion in the interview. Think what drives you to be the best version of yourself? Is it the sense of accomplishment or seeing your team do well? What really caught your interest about that particular job or company?

“Enthusiasm is everything. It can be off putting talking to someone who comes across like they’ve applied for the job just for the sake of it and is just going through the motions of their application, so if they’re intrigued to find out more about the company, role, career prospects etc, this really helps.”
Jess Lamplough
Recruitment Consultant

Tailor your CV

Before sending your CV off to apply for a job, compare it with the job specification, matching your qualifications and experience. This is very important as some roles require a minimum amount of experience or a specific qualification to be considered. Also make sure you only include information that is relevant to the role. If you’ve achieved a number of accomplishments in the past, select the most relevant to the role you are applying for.

“It’s good to write about some achievements and accomplishments as they always provide a good talking point in interviews. For me, hobbies and interests give a good insight into what a prospective candidate is actually about. Take time to think about what you write in this section as it generally acts as an ice breaker if and when you get called for an interview.”
Tony Fallows
Account Manager

Keep your LinkedIn up to date

LinkedIn is a great opportunity to show off what you’re like professionally. By keeping your LinkedIn profile up to date, if a potential employer or recruiter were to come across your profile, be it from mutual connections or simply a search for professionals, you enhance your chances of being contacted. Your LinkedIn profile is like an online version of your CV.

We hope you found these tips useful. Don’t forget to like and share on our Facebook page, Twitter and of course, LinkedIn to help fellow job hunters with the search!


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