By Dorcas Karuana,
With employers receiving hundreds of CVs you must make sure that your CV hooks an employer’s attention within a 5-second glance. Here are some great tips to get you that CV that will get you your dream job.

1.Never underestimate headings
A great way to do this is to use job titles and skill headings that relate to and match the jobs you want. For instance if you worked at the reception, you may write Receptionist or you may write Front Office/Telesales Executive. The second one is more descriptive and interesting, if you did both of these tasks.

2.Use content that grabs attention
The content of your CV, the descriptions you include of your skills and abilities, that determine how many interviews your CV will generate. In your duties and responsibilities, where you would write; “Managed accounts,” instead write, “Maintained records for accounts receivable and accounts payable accounts.” The second one is more elaborate and give a better professional image.

3.Quantify and use power words
Using numbers to describe your achievements and responsibilities can greatly expand and elevate your image. Using numbers and quantifying creates vivid images in our mind when we read them. Compare “Gave work assignments to staff of entry level accounting clerks,” and “Directed workflow, supervised and trained accounting staff performing posting to general ledger, accounts receivable and payable accounts.” The second one uses power (and action) words shown in italics.

4.Analyze ads and job descriptions to identify key words
Learning how to analyze the key words from the advert is critical. For instance, an Accounts Receivable Manager advert reads; Seeking experienced A/R Manager to oversee accounts, manage billing and collections, train accounting and clerical staff, develop status reports for management and prepare monthly balance sheets. B.A. Degree or A.A. Degree with minimum of 2 years experience required.

Even though this advertisement is short there is still a lot of information that can come out of analysing this advert closely. The words in italics are the key words and crucial points that need to be addressed. While you do not want to repeat the same words in the ad (which is very irritating to the Human Resource) you need to make sure your CV addresses that you have performed in each of those areas.

5.Create an image that matches your target salary
When you write your CV keep in mind the job level that you want and make sure your CV is appropriate for that level. I guess this would be one of the places where you would be able to those good words dollar words in your CV. Using words that help create a good image like prospecting instead of finding (when it comes to looking for clients to sell to, can help create a good first impression.

Once you incorporate these tips into your CV, you will have something that will make employers fall over themselves inviting you for an interview.

Dorcas is a Recruitment Consultant at Corporate Manpower East Africa Ltd. Email: dorcas(at)

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