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How To Effectively Prepare A CV In Microsoft Word

Author : Jamie Simpson

The Microsoft Office Student Offer bundles the Office suite including Microsoft Word, a powerful word processor which can be used to design your curriculum vitae or CV for short. A CV is the most scrutinized business document you'll likely ever submit. If done properly, it can advance you to that next step -- the interview. If done poorly, it can eliminate the most formidable of job seekers from contention.

In discussing what a CV should include, it may be best to begin by listing what it should not. In addition to avoiding typos or spelling errors, it should not include a statement of objectives, hobbies, or personal information like a tax ID number or social security number.

A good CV reads crisply. It should run two to three pages in length. Separate headings and listings of employment should be bold faced. Spacing should allow each page to breathe.

Beginning on the top of the page, the CV should include the following:

• Name, address, and work & home telephone numbers. Employers and recruiters will use discretion in calling you, so don't be afraid to include your work number. Those making hiring decisions are busy, so don't throw up any hurdles should they want to contact you. You may stamp "Confidential" on the top of the document.

• "Experience" or "Professional Experience". List employers chronologically, starting with the most recent, with the dates of employment -- years only -- on the left side. Skip a space and list your present (or last) job title. Underneath this, describe your position (focusing on day-to-day responsibilities, the skills needed to perform the job, and key accomplishments). Avoiding placing too much weight on your current job at the expense of other significant prior employment. The idea is for you to show progression over the years. If you've been with one employer for many years, break down the job titles to show advancement and the increase in responsibilities. Don't omit any jobs, or you could raise questions.

• "Education." State the year of graduation, the educational institution's name, the city where it's located, and the degree you earned. (If you don't include the degree, most readers will assume that you didn't receive one). If you graduated with honors (summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa) include it, but don't feel compelled to mention that you graduated with a 2.9 average, spent a summer at Harvard or took non-certificate bearing classes. Including that you enrolled in several post-graduate courses won't impress anyone and only begs the question why you didn't pursue a degree. If you're recently out of school, include key student activities if they're significant.

On a separate page, under the heading "Addendum," you may include outstanding accomplishments, industry affiliations, and other details that may further enhance your attractiveness to an employer. If necessary, break these into separate headings such as Awards, Professional Affiliations, and Special Accomplishments.

Don't feel pressured to include filler information for the sake of increasing the length of the document. If unsure, remember the objectives of any curriculum vitae: to get you noticed for your background and depth of experience while supplying an interviewer with questions that you feel comfortable answering.

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Submitted : 2011-02-23    Word Count : 1    Times Viewed: 543