Category: Quick Tips for Job Seekers

Step 1: Plan your CV

Before you sit down to draft the perfect CV, make sure you have all the information you’ll need. This includes:
• Personal information: This includes you names, contact details and ID number

• Working experience: List your working experience, starting with your most recent job and working your way back to your first job. Include the dates you started and left, the companies’ names and a summary of your key duties at each job.

• Education: Here you’ll need to list all your qualifications, starting with the most recent and ending with your first. Remember to add in the start and end dates, as well as the names of the institutions you attended.

• Skills: Write down all the necessary skills you acquired at your various jobs.

• References: List the names, positions and current contact details of colleagues who can give insight into your work performance. Remember to ensure that you have their permission before listing their names.

Step 2: Design your CV

There are many ways to create your CV and with countless apps and digital tools, it just got easier. Remember that your CV style needs to suit the type of job you’re applying for.
Try the following options:
1. Use an online CV creators like The CV Centre, cvmaker, CV creator or Visual CV.

2. Choose a CV template that suits you at The CV Centre, Credit Compare, Business Owl, Money Smart or Job Mail.

3. Try LinkedIn’s CV builder. This feature takes all the information you’ve registered on the site and creates a professional CV. It also gives you the choice to choose from CV styles to suit your application.

4. Use a Word document to create your CV. Your document should be one to two pages but you’ll need to remember to always check the required page count on the job advertisement. Save your Word document as a PDF so that no one can change your details.

Step 3: Your cover letter

Your CV cover letter will be the first thing most recruiters see so it is important to write a cover letter for each job you apply for. Remember, the CV is about your skills but the cover letter should give recruiters an idea of whether you meet the company’s requirements. Read the job advertisement so that the content in your cover letter matches the requirements in the advertisement.
1. State the job that you are applying for in the opening line.

2. Write down three reasons telling the recruiter why they should hire you.

3. Once you have listed the reasons, back it up by listing your experience for each reason. OR

4. Try using a table with two columns. The first column can state the requirements for the job (usually stated in the job advertisement) while the second column lists your qualifications that match the requirements.

5. You can use bullet points to list your skills; they look neater.

6. You should have a conclusion.

These are only guidelines as there are many ways to write a cover letter.

Here is an example:

Dear Mr Hattingh
Thank you for considering my application for the features writer position at your company.
You will find that I am a hardworking, experienced and dedicated worker who believes in building good relationships with contacts and delivering within given deadlines.
Below is a table summarising my skills and qualifications:
Requirements Qualifications
Two years’ writing experience at a magazine. Five years’ experience at a reputable publishing house
Knowledge of Adobe InDesign. Three years’ experience with Adobe InDesign.
Ability to think creatively and meet deadlines. I am known to be deadline driven and original.

I appreciate your time and look forward to hearing from you soon.