CV Tips

Why do I need a Curriculum Vitae (CV)?

The purpose of a CV is to help you get selected for an interview.
It is an opportunity to sell yourself, your skills, your experience and the attributes you bring to the role in which you’re applying.
A successful CV will make you stand out from the crowd….but in a good way.

How to get going

Find out who the CV is going to and address your cover letter appropriately,
Contact the nominated person for a copy of the position description (if the job advertisement doesn’t have enough detail) so you can appropriately tailor your resume,
Review your career plan – does this role fit in with where you want to be in the future?

The Format

Find an example template of a sample CV from the internet. You can search on the Google search engine to find one.
Stick to simple layouts, no photographs or bright colours, not too long (4-5 pages maximum, less is better).
Tailor each CV to the role to which you are applying,
Put the most important information at the top - ensure the most recent jobs/education are listed first and work backwards,
Ensure your name is on each page - best place is in the footer.
List both your job duties and key achievements – but keep it brief and quantify everything you can.

Brief example of a CV (below)

Mary Smith, 200 London St, Sydney NSW 2000
Tel: 9234 5679 Mob: 021 034 987 Email:

Summary of professional skills

  • Excellent oral, written and communication skills
  • Ability to work autonomously and as part of a team
  • Provision of high standard of customer service
  • Intermediate skills in and knowledge of travel agency operations


Senior Consultant, Jan 2005- Sept 2005 Travel Land Customer Services Call Centre.
Provided first call resolution to inbound customers
Cross-selling other Travel Land Products
Won ‘Consultant of the Month’ Sept 2004

Customer Services Representative Jan 2002-Dec 2004
Retail customer services Myer Store
Training mentor for new staff
Successful in development of mystery shopper programme


Bachelor of Commerce, Sydney University Jan 2002-Dec 2004
Team Leader ‘Student Services’ Jan- Dec 2003

CV Tips

Important Points TO REMEMBER

  • Achievements in your role, with appropriate figures,
  • Detail on the company and businesses you have worked for – don’t assume the reviewer knows who your company was,
  • Demonstration of where you have obtained the key competencies of the role in which you have applied,
  • Ensure there are no gaps in your resume left unexplained,

Important Points NOT to INCLUDE

  • Photographs
  • Your date of birth, marital status, family information or anything that is irrelevant to the role.

Use Action Words

When you are writing your resume it is important to use action words to describe your experience and achievements.

Attained Advanced Actioned Adapted Administered Benefited Analysed Applied assessed Co-ordinated Built Challenged Channelled Communicated Combated Combined Commissioned Conducted Compiled Completed Conceived Converted Consistent Consolidated Controlled Designed Created Delivered Demonstrated Directed Developed Devised Diagnosed Eliminated Economical Effective Efficient Enhanced Enabled Encouraged Engineered Exceeded Enriched Established Evolved Experienced Excelled Executed Expanded Gained Extended Formulated Fulfilled Implemented Generated Guided Identified Influenced improved Incorporated Increased Instigated Initiated Innovative Inspired Led Integrated Introduced Launched Monitored Managed Marketed Minimised Originated Motivated Perfected Organised Persuaded Participated Prepared Performed Piloted Positive Profitable Processed Produced Proficient Progressed Promoted Proposed Qualified Quantified Raised Recovered Rectified Redesigned Reorganised Repaired Resolved Resourceful Restored Restructured Secured Simplified Sold Solved Specialised Stable Stimulated Streamlined Strengthened Stretched Successful Superseded Supervised Terminated Trained Transformed Uncovered Unified Utilised Verified Versatile Widened

The Cover Letter

  • Ensure it is tailored for the role in which you are applying
  • Address it to the right person (no Dear Sir/Madam)
  • Be succinct
  • Outline why you should be considered for the role – but don’t repeat your CV in
    essay form