Skip to content

10 Dos and Dont’s of Exceptional CV Writing


You’ve decided to write your CV, so you’re ready to figure out the best way to do it, right? As long as you follow these 10 do’s and don’ts of exceptional CV writing, you’ll be in good shape!


1) Do use an eye-catching layout

When it comes to your CV, first impressions matter. So make sure that the layout is easy on the eyes and doesn’t look cluttered. Use clear headers and white space to break up sections. And don’t be afraid to use a little color to make your CV pop! An eye-catching layout makes an impact when it comes to your CV. Clear headers, white space, and a little color will ensure that you have an excellent chance at landing an interview or job opportunity. Don’t forget to include information about any relevant qualifications and certifications that may help you stand out from other applicants. Finally, always double check for typos before submitting your application – nothing could ruin your chances more than having a major mistake in your resume.


2) Do incorporate keywords from the job posting

One of the secrets to writing a great CV is to incorporate keywords from the job posting. This helps the hiring manager see that you have the skills and qualifications they are looking for. Plus, it shows that you are paying attention to detail. Don’t use acronyms: Don’t use acronyms as not everyone will know what you’re talking about. Instead, break down your experience with plain language and include any relevant awards or accolades that relate to the job description. Do tailor your CV for each position: Make sure your CV reflects your experience and skill set which will be different depending on which position you’re applying for (i.e., specific education level required).


3) Do consider images, videos, links and more

Images, videos, links and more can all be great additions to your CV that help give employers a better sense of who you are as a person and what you can bring to the table. However, there are a few things to keep in mind when adding these elements to your CV. First, you want to make sure the images, videos or links you include will not take up too much space on their computer screen and end up being difficult for them to scroll through. Second, make sure it is clear what each link or video is about by including an explanation at the bottom of it so they know why they should click on it. Third, be aware that many people have slower internet connections so avoid using large graphics or animations which could cause them to have a hard time loading your page.


4) Don’t have typos or grammatical errors

One of the biggest secrets to writing a great CV is to proofread, proofread, and proofread again! Make sure there are no typos or grammatical errors, as this can make or break your chances of getting an interview. Always use proper English, especially if you are applying for a job in the US. Stay away from abbreviations or acronyms that may not be understood by your reader. And be careful with punctuation—commas must always go inside quotation marks when citing dialogue.


5) Don’t write generic introductions

One of the biggest mistakes you can make when writing your CV is to start with a generic introduction. This makes you sound like everyone else and does nothing to sell your unique skills and experience. Instead, take the time to write a strong opening that will grab the attention of the reader and make them want to learn more about you.


6) Don’t include your full address

One of the most common mistakes people make when writing their CVs is including their full address. This is unnecessary and can even be seen as a red flag by potential employers, as it gives them too much information about you. Stick to your city and state/province instead. One thing that is important to include on your CV is how old you are. Include any qualifications or degrees from colleges or universities in which you have earned a degree in order to show employers that they are dealing with someone who has gone through an extensive amount of training and education in their field. The best way to put this into practice would be listing these after high school diplomas but before university degrees so that they do not look like an afterthought.


7) Don’t list irrelevant information

One of the most common mistakes people make when writing their CVs is including irrelevant information. It’s important to remember that a CV is not a autobiography, so only include information that is relevant to the job you are applying for. This means you should tailor your CV for each job you apply to, highlighting different skills and experiences as necessary.


8) Don’t be pretentious

No one likes a bragger, so avoid coming across as pretentious on your CV. Highlight your accomplishments and skills without sounding arrogant. This can be a difficult balance to strike, but it’s important to remember that you are trying to impress potential employers with your professional achievements, not your ego. If you find yourself feeling the need to mention things like I have never been fired from any job I’ve ever had or I’m a self-starter, then it’s probably time for some edits. It is also important to know what type of job you’re applying for before writing your resume. If you’re looking for a position in the arts or public relations, those types of experience will be more relevant than say, engineering or architecture – something we explore in depth in this blog post!


9) Don’t apply for roles outside your skill set

One of the most common mistakes job seekers make is applying for roles that are outside of their skill set. Not only does this increase the chances of getting rejected, but it also wastes time that could be spent applying for jobs that are a better fit.


10) Don’t leave it until the last minute

One of the most important secrets to writing a great CV is to start early. Don’t leave it until the last minute to gather your information and start writing. The earlier you start, the more time you have to perfect your CV. It is best to leave ample space on your resume for growth as this will show potential employers that you are an ambitious and hardworking individual.