If you are looking for a new engineering job, a strong CV is vital to success.
Here, we give some tips on how to put together an attention-grabbing résumé.
Make your CV specific
Your CV is essentially a marketing tool to assist you in getting an interview so you need to ‘sell’ yourself. So be specific and give examples.
When employers look at your CV, they need to know exactly what you have achieved in your previous engineering jobs and how this is relevant to the role you are applying for. So, if you were responsible for driving growth or cutting costs in a business, say exactly how you did it and go into specifics on the results that were achieved.
Concentrate on what makes you stand out
When employers look at your CV, they need to know exactly what you have achieved in your previous engineering jobs and how this is relevant to the role you are applying for.
You will be competing for the top roles with other candidates from very similar work backgrounds. What have you done that shows initiative or flexibility? What projects have you been involved with? Describe the extra responsibility you had, what you have learned and what skills you have developed.
Nic Sephton-Poultney, Country Manager for Robert Walters South Africa says, "The first thing we look for is the relevant qualification/ systems / certificates – because engineering is so specialised most of the time a specific system, qualification or professional membership is requested by the potential employer. Secondly, to make your CV stand out, highlight the projects you have worked on and the experience you gained in that particular role. These projects should be listed underneath each role you have had.
For example your CV should read as follows:
- Personal details
- Qualifications/ certificates/ memberships/ systems use
- Work experience – dates employed, title, responsibilities, and underneath that all relevant projects. Pay specific attention to international exposure
- Brands of products, particular equipment and client base can all add value.
Make every word count
You don’t have much time to impress with your CV – employers tend to scan rather than read them. Consequently, it needs to be succinct and to-the-point. Crucially, it needs to show that you have what it takes to be successful in your chosen career. The best CVs are typically made up purely of education and work experience.
Avoid typos, spelling mistakes and grammatical errors
Although this may sound obvious, you would be surprised how many CVs contain spelling mistakes and other basic grammatical errors. Although this may not be the end of the world, they are avoidable and imply carelessness – not an impression anyone would want to give to a potential employer.
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For more career advice please contact:
Nic Sephton-Poultney, Country Manager (South Africa)
+27 (0) 11 881 2414