As a sales recruiter, I scan hundreds of CVs every week. I love the sales recruitment work that I do because I love selling and love to talk to salespeople who are just as passionate about their careers. Unfortunately, of all the hundreds of CVs I read in any given week probably 60% are not worth the digital space they take.
On average, I will spend 3 to 5 seconds scanning a CV looking for Red Flags and for Keywords. 60% don’t make it past 4 seconds and are pretty much a waste of everybody’s time.
The extremes could fill a book – like the 22-year old man from Manchester who listed as achievements during his two-week internship – the only work he had ever done – ‘getting dressed’ and ‘arriving almost on time for ten consecutive days’. My real pet peeves are for the ‘seemingly’ regular people who simply don’t understand the reason to create to a CV in the first place.
A CV is a sales tool! The only goal of a CV is to get an interview – period.
Well, here are my top three peeves!
#1 Email addresses must professional!
If you are a 40-year old man using your wife’s email address you will, almost certainly, never secure an interview with me. What am I to garner from a man named Bill Smith whose CV and later correspondence comes from bettysmith@? Either Bill Smith does not understand technology well enough to open his own email account or it is actually his wife who his trying to get him a job. Either one of these reasons will automatically disqualify Bill from every job that I recruit. Now, I write ‘Bill’ because it is only men who do this, I have never received a CV from a woman who uses her husband’s email address!
Bill does your wife dress you in the morning too? Come on men get your act together!
The second problem with emails is people using clearly personal accounts. If your email address is ‘missuganda@’ ‘billy.is.hot@’ or some other clearly personal email address please do not use it. These email addresses show the sender as trivial, silly, or sometimes much worse. A generic email address made up of some version of your name is ideal – keep it simple!
#2 Not Including Your Residential Address!
We recruit across the UK and Europe and a CV without an address is a huge waste of time. I don’t know why someone living in Bromley would apply for a role in Uxbridge? The compute is impossible. France is a large country and providing your address really does help! Save yourself and the recruiter time by providing complete contact information. This should include your complete name, residential address, email address and telephone number – and it should be current information. By the way, I don’t want to know your age. It is against the law for me to ask so please don’t tell me!
#3 Apply For Relevant Work!
I understand that ambition is a good thing and I encourage everyone to reach and stretch with their career aspirations, however, if your only work experience is a cashier at ASDA you probably won’t be considered for a senior event management sales role with a base salary of £100,000 per year. Why would you apply? Really? Why? I know that the reason for this may be the fact that in the UK to maintain Jobseekers Allowance you must list a certain number of job applications per week but is this really serving your search?
Please be relevant! India is not part of the UK anymore! There was a time in the proud history of this country when India was the ‘Jewel In The Crown’ but when a role clearly states that the applicant must have the right to work in the UK this does not include India, America, Mexico or the 150+ countries not currently part of the European Union. Please invest your valuable time in career pursuits that are at least possible!
Those are my top three and they are very basic things. If a person is applying for a sales role their CV should actually ‘sell’ them! Hint: presenting yourself as a moron is not a good sales strategy!
Of course I could go on and on but I will leave the rest for future blogs as my inbox is once again full of CVs! Let’s hope there some gold buried somewhere in there!
Do you hire or recruit? I would love to hear your pet peeves!