Top CV writing tips

24 05 2013

There is no one way to write a good CV and cover letter.  But here are some tips:

1: Adapt the cover letter to the job: reflect the wish list in the job ad into your letter.

2: Aim for one page CV, no more.

3: Write one sentence or more at the top of your CV that sums up who you are and why you are right for the job.  Put key skills, particularly those that make you stand out as different to other candidates, such as video editing, blogging etc at the very top.

4: Cut obvious or generic statements such as ‘good communicator’ or ‘team player’ and replace with specific examples that show you actually have these skills.

5: Create a webpage CV, which includes examples of your online and multimedia journalism skills and put the link on your paper CV.  (tumblr et al) See Luke Lambert’s here.

6: Put your NCTJ qualifications at the top.

7: Put all your other qualifications and work experience in order with most recent at the top.

8: You can now lose all those descriptions of what you did in Tescos – editors know what checkout staff do.

 9: Add links to all your published work eg; your Argus page and others.

10: Your cover letter should be written to showcase your writing skills as a journalist; you are not an Edwardian lady applying for a job in a library: write tight, sharp, lively copy – why else would an editor hire you?

11: Never, never, never send a cover letter/email/CV without showing it to someone to proof read first.  We ALL make mistakes (that’s why we have subs) and an editor will spot them and bin your application straight away.




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