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The purpose of the CV is to secure the interview. You have to capture and hold your audience long enough to do just that. Your CV needs to be strategically developed as a personal marketing tool.

Remember that every CV is unique to the person writing it in terms of the content and layout. To support your CV, please ensure that your LinkedIn profile is truthful and up to date. Bear in mind that this is a professional social media tool.

Here are some hot tips and guidelines, which will help you to secure that all-important interview.


  • Absolutely no spelling mistakes
  • It must be easy to read and visually appealing


  • The information must be accurate, genuine and to the point – use bullet points wherever possible to keep your CV concise.


Personal details:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Contact telephone numbers
  • Cell phone number and e-mail address
  • Nationality
  • Gender
  • Languages spoken
  • Date of birth (optional) and/or ID number

Your future employer will be able to gauge this from your educational dates, ID number as well as work history dates, so why put him under pressure and annoy him – just put in your date of birth.

Education and qualifications:

  • Tertiary and school – don’t get too detailed about school, especially if you have an extensive work history.
  • Memberships and professional affiliations – only if they are relevant.
  • You should include all dates of qualifications.

Employment History:

  • Start with current and work backwards
  • Name of employer and nature of their business
  • Accurate dates
  • Job responsibilities – in bullet points
  • Achievements – be specific
  • Reasons for leaving – in one line

DO NOT LEAVE TIME GAPS – If you have travelled, then say so with accurate dates.

Interests and Achievements:

  • Here is the opportunity to show something of your personality.
  • Only mention achievements that are recent and relevant. That you swam the Midmar Mile in 1986 is a no-no, but that you won the Employee of the Year award in your present position – yes.
  • Include school and tertiary highlights if they are relevant, e.g. head girl, captain of the first rugby team, member of the debating team, junior lecturer while studying, job-relative awards.


  • Simply state that these are available on request. Make sure your referees are happy to be contacted. These references should be current.

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