There has been a lot of talk about whether CVs should be 2 pages only or more than that, and whether CVs should be customised. Here we tell you what agencies and clients want to see – the CV look they want.
I think that 2 pages might have applied to other industries but not IT.
Agencies and the CV Look
Agencies rely on identifying buzzwords. They list the skills and experience that are relevant to a particular requirement. Then they do a search to find those candidates with those skills.
Once they have a list of those people with the requisite skills, they then look at the front page summary and the most recent jobs to eliminate those who have no recent experience, or who don‘t have much experience of the skill.
Clients and the CV Look
Of course, if you are an employer or client, you want to have the summary on the front page. That’s so that you can eliminate those that are no use on the first trawl through.
Clients often get dozens of CVs through That’s especially from lazy agencies who do not do the work first of gleaning out the unsuitable ones, and cannot spend the time on each CV that they might want to.
After that they look in detail at the most recent skills, especially those that are relevant to the job you are offering.
Rules on CV Look
The rules appear to be:-
1) It‘s imperative that there is a front page summary with all the buzzwords on it
2) The CV should be no more than 5 pages
3) You should have no jobs that are more than 5 years old as these are now irrelevant. You can just list the names of the places you’ve been before that, especially if, for example, it is a banking job that you are going for and you have recent banking skills, but you want to show that you have a whole history of working for bank.
4) The most recent jobs should be first.
5) Most recent jobs should have the most space and the ones from 4 years ago just a summary unless it is particularly relevant, i.e. it has a rare skill that this particular job wants.
6) All CVs must be customised for a particular requirement, bringing to the fore the particular skills that this particular customer wants. If he or she can’t find them quickly then your CV runs the risk of being eliminated in the first trawl through.
Well, that’s the CV look that agencies and employers want to see. Now get cracking and fix your CV.