How to make your CV stand out in 2021

While some may lead you to think that there is a dark art to creating a stellar CV, Jen Gaster at HR Heads shares her five tips on how to make yours stand out in 2021.

  1. Return on Investment

Ensure you demonstrate the value-add on your CV.

You are a cost to the business that shows up as a ‘red line’ on the P&L – so how do you prove your financial worth? Its imperative that you evidence your actions that have led to cost-savings, delivered within (or under) budget and created value within your role.

2. Details are important

Ensure you describe not just what you did, but what impact that had on the business. That doesn’t mean listing your responsibilities but do be specific about your achievements.

3. Context is key

It is important that you can explain the context in which you are working, for instance; size and scale, number of sites, employee client groups and whether it is a unionised environment.

4. What is your remit?

Explain your remit in terms of reporting lines up (and stakeholder influencing) and down (management of teams).

5. Competency headings

Group your key achievements into competency headings to enable the reader to digest all of one topic in full.

The age old advise of keeping your CV concise, gap-free and current still stands true, but in taking on board the five tips above you can really elevate your CV to the next level.


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Career Builder data shows…

  • 17% of hiring managers will be put off by a CV that’s more than two pages in length
  • 35% of employers will be put off by an unprofessional email address
  • 40% of hiring managers spend less than a minute reviewing CVs
  • 75% of HR Managers have spotted a lie on a CV
  • 77% of hiring managers will discount CVs because of grammatical errors or typos – so it’s worth running your text through a tool like Grammarly.com

About the author

Jennifer Gaster is an experienced recruitment consultant who first joined the profession more than 20 years ago.

She founded specialist HR recruitment agency HR Heads in 2009, with the vision to reward relationships, do the right thing and exceed expectations.

With the purpose of delivering recruitment as a professional service, Jen and the HR Heads team have achieved more than 500 HR placements across industrial, pharmaceutical & life science, consumer, professional & financial services and the public sectors.

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