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How to Make Your CV Stand Out

22 days ago by VMA GROUP

How to Make Your CV Stand Out

Pexels Sora Shimazaki 5673502

Did you know that recruiters and hiring managers often spend around 6 to 10 seconds initially scanning a CV to decide if a candidate is a potential fit for the role? That's why it is absolutely crucial that your CV makes a good first impression. Here are 5 tips you can use to make your CV stand out, and help you get one step closer to your next Communications, Marketing, Digital or Change role:

1.       Tailor your CV to each job you apply for.

Customising your CV for each specific job application will help you highlight the skills, experiences and qualifications that align with the job description. You can do this by incorporating industry-specific keywords and terminology, which will help catch the attention of employers in that field. Of course, there will be some specific keywords that are more relevant to one job than another, but including a range of terminology shows that you’ve taken the time to truly understand the role and showcase that you are a good fit.

For example, when applying to a Social Media Executive role, make sure to include keywords such as:

  • Click-through rate (CTR), SEO (Search Engine Optimisation), target audience, content creation, conversion rates, market research and trends, branding, KPI (Key Performance Indicator)” etc.

2.       Showcase transferable skills.

By including a range of transferable skills in your CV, it demonstrates that your skills are not tied to a specific job or industry, and can be a valuable asset when wanting to transition into different roles and sectors. In the Communications, Marketing, Digital and Change sectors, employers will often seek the following transferable skills that are considered very valuable:

  • Communication skills (writing and editing, speaking), creativity, proactivity, research and analysis, digital literacy (proficiency in using social media platforms, online tools) project management, time management, and more!

3.       Include a professional summary and objective, to showcase your career goals.

By including a brief description of your career goals, it gives employers insight into your long-term aspirations. Employers are often impressed by individuals who express a clear sense of purpose in their career, and especially those who seek professional growth. Often times, your ambitions can align with the company’s values, mission and objectives, which can make you appear more invested in contributing to the organisation’s success. Your career goals can also simply be a memorable or differentiating factor that sets you apart from other candidates.

4.       Use numbers and metrics to demonstrate your achievements.

Instead of simply listing job responsibilities, emphasise your accomplishments and impact on the company by quantifying them with specific metrics or percentages. For example, instead of saying “created social media content to increase engagement,” say “increased social media engagement by 45% through the creation of targeted content, resulting in a 25% growth in followers over 3 months.” It creates a much clearer picture of your capabilities and potential!

5.       Keep formatting clean and consistent.

A polished and cohesive design enhances the readability of your CV. Sometimes, less is more.

  • Make sure to organize your CV into clear sections, with your contact details up to date and at the top of your page.

  • Choose a clean and professional font to use throughout your CV, maintain consistent spacing between sections, and use appropriate font sizes to distinguish headings and body text.

  • Use bullet points to emphasise key information in each section, keeping your achievements and responsibilities concise.

  • Present your work experience and education in reverse chronological order (starting with the most recent), clearly outlining the job title, company name, location and dates of employment for each work experience listed.

At the end of the day, the goal is to present yourself as a valuable asset to potential employers. Your CV is what determines your chances of getting that first-round interview, therefore, instead of rushing to sending out a generic CV, take some time to make it flawless and intentional. Good luck!​


VMA GROUP is a leading international interim, contract, temporary and permanent recruitment and executive search specialist. We are specifically focused on providing support to the communications, marketing, digital and change communities.

Our specialist practice areas cover: communications, corporate communications, internal communications, change communications, PR, media relations, financial communications, CSR, public affairs, investor relations, marketing, brand, digital marketing and agency services.

We have a reputation for providing expert consultancy services and advice, supported by in-depth knowledge of the professions we recruit for. Our thought leadership and benchmarking studies have become go-to resources for the communications, marketing, digital and change industries, supporting planning and decision-making for organisations of all shapes and sizes.

In the UK, VMA GROUP has offices in London, Bristol and Manchester and in Europe, VMA GROUP has offices in Amsterdam and Brussels, but we work with organisations and individuals on a global basis.

VMA GROUP is committed to equal opportunities and is a Diversity Pledged Recruiter.