The new reality in executive job hunting demands not only a powerful marketing package for your skills, but also a keen awareness of social media, Applicant tracking system (ATS) recruiter preferences, and cutting-edge personal branding. Take stock of these CV trends destined to affect how your executive CV is perceived in 2014.
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Here are some key updates for your CV and covering letter
Shorter, More Potent Documents.
While most executive CVs require at least 2-3 pages, the trend for 2014 and beyond is to provide a snapshot page that can stand on its own – with subsequent pages that include career details.
Write a 40- to 50-word summary that includes three reasons someone should hire you. The summary should vividly describe your personal brand, including three compelling reasons an employer would want you.
Create different formats of your CV
Make sure it can be easily read on other devices, such as a smartphone or tablet. Create multiple drafts and formats for different roles, to make it through different application mediums and screening tools. (Create) multiple CVs customized for each position, in both .txt and .doc formats to allow for use in online applications and ATS’s (.txt), and for traditional printed copies and PDF e-mailing (.doc).
Keywords that match job descriptions. Many employers use applicant-tracking systems to screen CVs and generate a short list of candidates. Take the time to include keywords that match the job requirements in your CV. If the job posting lists skills, be sure to include the ones that are listed if you have them.
Use achievement-based bullets
and not job description bullets when describing your work experience. Employers want to see how you succeeded at a certain function—not simply that you were responsible for the function. How you made money, saved on costs, streamlined processes and contributed to the corporate culture in measurable manners is what you need to outline on your executive CV.
Don’t be afraid to market yourself
Don’t make the hirer work for it – market yourself effectively. Be realistic, but don’t undersell your abilities. You have worked hard to get where you are so give credit where credit is due. If employers are looking for certain experience, incorporate it in your professional summary or career highlights section first. Your transferrable skills should follow.
Pull reference letters, Linkedin Recommendations and testimonials from your career into selected areas of your executive CV. As a key part of your personal brand message, a quote from a colleague or industry leader can carry significant weight when placed next to quantifiable achievements.
Stand out from the crowd
The CVs come in all shapes, sizes and formats. Depending on the type of position you are applying for, your CV may require some major out of the box thinking. Think about an infographic CV.
A splash of colour
Think out of the box. While not a new concept, colour on CVs is a trend that started several years ago and is gaining ground. If you decide to add colour to your leadership CV, choose a shade that aligns closely with your industry (toned-down for conservative professions vs. an eye-popping colour for more progressive careers.)
Add POWER CV WORDS
Including power CV words will increase your chance of getting hired by 80%! A strong CV incorporates meaningful, powerful words. Pick and choose carefully.
30 Power CV Words:
28. Set Goals
Eliminate any instances of these worn-out phrases that dull the shine of your individuality
- Demonstrated excellence.
- Proven ability to.
- Accomplished professional – or any statement that includes professional.
- Demonstrated success driving results and hitting goals in challenging and fast-paced corporate environments.
- Confident leader.
- Uniquely skilled at.
- Team player.
- Able to exceed in fast-paced environments.
- Works well independently or with a team.
- Excellent communicator (or its counterpart: Excellent verbal and written communication skills.)
- Results-oriented, results-driven, or proven ability to deliver results.
Add that LinkedIn profile URL
Employers will go to LinkedIn to find out more about you (90% of them anyway). And that’s a high enough percentage for me. Make it easy for them to find you (and make sure they’re finding the right YOU on LinkedIn) by including your personal LinkedIn profile URL on your CV.
Social CV (Online Resume/CV)
The idea is to draw employers to you by having a strong online presence. Employers can get a good sense of who you are from a social CV, since there are many possibilities for portraying yourself.) However, you should keep in mind that a social CV should include your social networks; therefore you will want to pay close attention to your reputation and online activity in order to be perceived in a positive way.
Additionally, you could use Wordle on your CV. This serves to ensure you have the right keywords within your resume and your LinkedIn profile. This tool provided you with a visualization of the keyword optimization of your CV and LinkedIn profile—and for discovering the most important keywords within a job ad.
Read related post > Using Social Networking Sites to Boost Your Job Search
You can choose a fun, appropriate picture that reveals or expresses more of the type of person you are. Make sure your Facebook Profile comes across as a positive representation of your personality.
Charts and graphs
Graphs and charts make it easier to understand content. Gone are the days where CVs featured words only. There is an emerging CV trend of showcasing accomplishments using easily digestible graphs and charts.
When you’re looking for a way to substantiate your brand and lend credibility to your successes, a quotation from a former supervisor or client may be just what you need. The perfect quote can validate your credentials, success, and the value and benefit you bring with you to the new company.
Referees (or Written References)
Find someone to be your referee, but don’t include their details on your CV. Simply end with a brief statement along the lines of “References can be supplied upon request.”
Typos or Factual Errors
Spell-check your CV before you send it. Also, get someone else to read it and check for mistakes you might have missed.
The recruiter will most certainly do a quick search to see what comes up under your name. Make it easy for them. Add the profile information for the platforms you feel represent you best to your CV. Focus on the one or two that represent you best. They will appreciate not needing to search you out themselves.
Turn your facebook timeline into a social CV
This is an amazing tool for self-marketing. Don’t forget to adjust your privacy settings for the right people seeing the right things. All of this can be executed whilst maintaining privacy for your other areas.
You can highlight your profile by adding life events to your profile, including details about on when you started new jobs, promotions and other significant appraisals. Adding accomplishments your facebook timeline will help you turn it into an amazing self-advertising tool. Don’t forget to hide inappropriate or too personal content, take some time and hide it from the timeline by clicking on the “Activity log”. This can be very time consuming process depending on how actively you have used your facebook page.
Create business cards for timeline
Next important step that you should stand by is to procreate business cards from your Timeline. Sounds so not heard of, right? Well, to help you do that; Facebook has recently joined hands with Moo.com – printer of custom business cards. By taking advantage of which, you can seamlessly create business cards using your Timelines. For this, simply go to your ‘Contact Info’ under ‘About’ and you will notice a business card icon. Cursor over it to catch a glimpse of what your card will look like. You can edit your information on the card once you have clicked through to Moo.com. Subsequent to this, you will receive the mail in a few days and be enabled to start networking with your Facebook account.
Would you like to add a CV trend you think will be big this year? We’d love to hear from you! Share your thoughts on our Facebook Community or in the comments area below.