Are CV’s too cliché? The words employers are sick of seeing on job applications

Job search engine Adzuna analysed over 1.1million CVs to find the most tired, overused phrases

Job search engine Adzuna analysed over 1.1million CVs to find the most used phrases.  Over a third of applications use the word “motivated”, while a quarter use “initiative” and “social”.

Other commonly used words included “organised”, “friendly” and “leader”.

“Job hunters have a fine balance to strike when it comes to crafting a great CV,” co-founder of Adzuna Andrew Hunter warned.

He added: “Moving away from recycled buzzwords like ‘motivated’ and ‘initiative’ could be the very factor that sets your own CV apart from someone else’s.”

The Sun shared the following tips for jobseekers to creating a good CV:

  1. Customise your CV for every role you apply for

Although time consuming, ensuring your CV is tailored to every company and every role that you apply for is important as prospective employers need to be assured that you haven’t sent the same CV to 100 other companies.

The best way to do this is to demonstrate that you are a good match for both the company and the role you’re applying for.

Study and do some research the job advert or specification, and tailor your own experience to the request.

If you don’t necessarily have the experience, focus on transferable skills to provide evidence that you have the qualities they are looking for.

  1. Be ruthless – ditch irrelevant information

Keep it concise. Potential employers usually have a finite amount of time to read CVs, so don’t include any irrelevant experience.

  1. Include hobbies and interests that suit the role you’re applying for

Social is one of the most commonly used words on CVs according to the research, so there’s clearly an increasing onus on demonstrating that your social life and personality are a good fit for the role and the company culture.

  1. Include a profile summary

This is a few sentences or bullet points (up to 200 words), right at the top of the first page, illustrating the unique selling points that make you a perfect match for the role.

Ensuring you update this for every role will tick the customised CV box.

Clearly outline the kind of role you are applying for and why, try to include the top three most relevant skills briefly in this section and expand further down in the CV.

  1. Proof, proof and proof again (then ask a friend)

Errors, typos and spelling mistakes are a massive turn off for employers and provide an easy excuse to reject your application (and speed up their shortlisting process). Print off your CV and proof your work slowly and meticulously. Then, once you’ve done that, ask a friend or family member to proof it for you.

  1. Keep it short
    Try to keep your CV short and make sure they are no longer than 2 pages.

Recruiters love this COMPLETE set of Accredited Recruitment & HR Training – View Training Brochure

Comment on this story

The British Institute of Recruiters is the Professional Body operating The Recruitment Certification Scheme

Send this to a friend