How to Write a Good CV

Infographic CV

A perfect CV is your first step and it is so important to get the Company or Recruiter to take your application to the next stage. This is the first place to sell yourself so take time in putting it together and read it out loud and think – would I interview this person? As the job market becomes more competitive, here’s are Dovetail’s top tips on how to write a good CV and how to make your CV stand out!

Where to start?

At the beginning of course! :0) Whatever format you decide to do your CV in, make sure you start with the all important contact information. Put your name, address, telephone numbers and email address at the top of the page. If you have LinkedIn or a website, add that too. You will be amazed how many people forget to put these key details on.

The first paragraph should be a Profile – a short statement about yourself, describing your strengths, achievements and the area of work you are looking for.

Work History

If you have many years work experience then your next heading should be Work History.

List your jobs with the most recent first, including start and finish dates, Job Titles followed by bullet points or a paragraph describing your responsibilities and, remember, achievements. If you are a Student or have recently Graduated, we suggest you put your Education  after your profile and list your qualifications followed by your Work History.

With work history, bullet points are your friends. Recruiters and employers look for key words and phrases that will stand out and relate to the job they are recruiting for. Try and stick to around 8 – 10 points that give a good overview of your different duties and responsibilities.

If you are a senior candidate and climbing the ladder then I would suggest a tailor made CV for each job role you are applying for so you are able to home in on the experience and skills that the company requires.


Education is last if you have some good work history behind you. Make sure you list the institution, dates, level of qualification and grades/classification.

7 Seconds 

According to research by Glassdoor, recruiters are now taking an average seven seconds to look at a CV when shortlisting’. Now we can’t say we fall into that category as we like to actually READ CVs that are sent to us, but this is a majority survey report.

Make your CV stand out
So your challenge, even more so than usual, is how to make yourself stand out from the rest vying for that dream job you’ve got your eye on. Probably the key word is tailor – each job is unique so your CV should also be unique, it’s your one opportunity to sell your skills to the max!

Get creative with your CV
We’ve seen lots of approaches, some fun with a novelty factor, such as an edible CV!

But here are two unique CVs the team at Dovetail particularly like – especially for those on the creative side, so consider these for your next dream job application!

Marketing CV Example: The CV as an infographic – find out how to create yours…
Useful resources for infographic templates

And we particularly enjoy using Canva! Create a multitude of CVs, templates, infographics, postcards…the list is endless!

The CV or a Brand?

Or just create your own brand! Like the young woman who was looking to start her career in journalism – she produced her own magazine, and more! Hats off to you!
cv - stand out brand

How to Write a Good CV Sources:

Thanks to:

Related Dovetail articles:

The South’s Job Market Report
Top Talent Trends for 2020 
Dovetail’s Charity Challenge – Permanent placements increase for the first time in almost a year.

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