CV writing tips | What to leave out of your CVs

With a trend towards ever shorter and concise CVs it is important to know what should and should not be included. If you include too much in your CV then you are showing that you lack the ability to priorities and the ability to write a summary. Although it may be hard to leave out certain things that mean a lot to you, you should think whether it is relevant to the job you are going for and whether it will make you stand out above other information. If the answer is no then it is probably best to leave it out.

Here are some of the things that you should leave out:

Your age - it is now advisable not to put your age on your CV because it can prejudice the decision whether to invite you to interview. You should only put your age if it is necessary for the job.

Other irrelevant personal information - unless it is necessary for the position you are applying for then it is best to leave out irrelevant information such as your height, weight, hair colour or ethnicity.

Full employment history - try to include only your most recent and relevant employment. Employers won't care that you had a paper round twenty years ago.

Photos - unless you are going into a job where the way you look matters then don't put a picture on your CV. So unless you are going for a job like acting or modelling then it is best to avoid a picture.

Salary information - unless this is specifically asked for then it is best to leave out salary information. It is best to leave the talk of salaries until later in the interview process. Salary information is of little benefit to a future employer and could limit your chance of interview if you look too expensive.

Reasons for leaving - this is particularly important if you left on bad terms with past employers. It is best not to highlight problems with previous jobs on the first contact you have with a potential new employers. If you didn't leave on bad terms then it is still irrelevant information that they don't need to know about.

Exams, job, business failures - again it is best to play down the times you have failed. We have all failed at some time in our life so it is best to concentrate on times when you have been successful and stood out from the crowd.

Colours, patterns and borders - unless you are looking to create an alternative looking CV for an artistic job then these will detract from what you are saying. You will have to ensure that you are very good at designing documents if you wish to attempt a document that is colourful and artistic.

 

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