Looking for something flexible, but not sure your CV is up to scratch?
No matter what industry you’re in, learning how to effectively tailor your application to the role you’re applying for is vital – and could be the key to finding your perfect part-time position.
But you don’t necessarily need to spend hours rearranging your formatting or employment history to make your applications mean more, even if starting again is the only option. To help you save time, we’ve put together a free Part-time CV template.
Just here for the template? Click the link below:
Always tailor your personal statement to the role you’re applying for.
Aside from your cover letter, your personal statement is your first opportunity to sell yourself. This involves using four or five lines to answer the three basic questions:
Who are you? What do you have to offer? What are you aiming for in your career?
Just remember: always relate your sales pitch back to what you’re actually going to be doing, avoiding any overused clichés which don’t add value to your application.
And, by quantifying your attributes with specific examples, you’ll not only be able to prove your suitability, but you’ll also ensure your CV is unique.
If you don’t have much relevant work experience, you may choose to put greater emphasis on your skills.
Use this section to demonstrate abilities that are applicable to the role you’re applying for, or ones which may be particularly desirable for part-time staff. For example, adaptability, problem solving, interpersonal skills are all desirable soft skills for part-time positions, along with any industry-specific hard skills.
Adding examples of each of your skills is also a great way to back them up.
If you don’t want to include a skills section, you can always cover your relevant abilities here – putting your employment history straight after your personal statement.
Write in reverse-chronological order (with the most recent jobs coming at the top), and don’t feel like you have to include every job you’ve ever done. If it doesn’t add anything, it isn’t worth including.
It’s also vital to lead with any achievements or accomplishments you experienced in the role, rather than copying out a list of daily duties. Using language such as ‘increased by X%’, or dynamic words such as ‘implemented’ or ‘delivered’ will help to demonstrate your skills in a tangible way, and make it difficult for a recruiter to skim over them.
Finally, if you have no employment history to speak of, don’t panic. There’s nothing wrong with leaving this section out, or placing greater emphasis on your education or skillset by switching up the format.
However, if you feel lack of employment history is holding you back, take this opportunity to be proactive. Volunteering, work experience placements and even temporary positions are all good ways of adding selling points to your CV.
For certain roles, covering your education is just as important as your work history.
Include everything from GCSE (or equivalent) level on, and feature the most recent (and, therefore, relevant) qualifications first.
You won’t need to go into too much detail, as highlighting the number qualifications achieved and general grades you received (Maths and English at the very least) is usually enough. If you’re awaiting results, you may state mock or expected results, although this is certainly not a requirement.
If you have a degree, or other higher education diploma/qualification, using specific modules you’ve undertaken to demonstrate your wider knowledge of the subject also works particularly well within this section.
Hobbies & Interests
Contrary to popular belief, most employers consider this section optional.
However, if they’re particularly unique, well-written, or have some significance to the role, hobbies can be a great way to make your CV stand out from the crowd.
On the other hand, generic hobbies like ‘reading’, ‘listening to music’ or ‘socialising with friends’ options, or anything else which will do little to endear you to the reader should always be left out.
If you’re unsure whether your hobbies make the cut, ask yourself: Will they help you get the job, and is this something I’m passionate enough to talk about at an interview?
If the answer to these questions is no, then don’t be afraid to omit any extra-curricular interests.
Finally, unless asked directly within the job ad, it’s perfectly acceptable to state you’re your references are available upon request.
However, always make sure you do have credible references. Close family friends, teachers, or career councillors are all good options, and most are usually happy to help.
Interviewers can, and will, check. Without the right people to back up your skills, you might just lose out on the right role for you.
Need more CV advice?
It takes an employer just seven seconds to save or reject a job applicant’s CV. This means creating a succinct CV is absolutely vital if you want to land that all-important interview.
To find out how to make your CV stand out from the crowd, buy James Reed’s new book: The 7 Second CV: How to Land the Interview.
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