Have you ever wondered what it would be like to get a job in an international company? Perhaps you’ve thought about travelling to the United States, Germany or the UK for your dream job. Or maybe you want to be the English speaking star in a Spanish office, in charge of customer relationships in countries all over the world?

Whatever your goal, your CV (curriculum vitae), which is also sometimes known as a résumé, could be one of the things holding you back. A good CV will catch a recruiter’s attention and put you at the top of the pile when it’s time to ask people in for interviews.

Here are our 6 tips for writing the perfect CV.


1. Decide On Your CV Style

There’s a slight difference between a CV and a résumé. A CV generally includes your entire professional experience and educational background – literally your life’s work. Whereas a résumé is more focused, only including your most relevant work experience and qualifications.

As you progress throughout your career, and garner more work experience, you may wish to switch to a résumé format simply because it will be easier for hiring managers to understand.


2. Include A Mission Statement

Your mission statement is the first thing a recruiter will see. It is designed to explain why you are looking for a role in a particular field or company in three or four short sentences. Use it to highlight your key strengths, your ambitions, even your five-year plan. It’s a good idea to talk in the first person as that makes it friendly and easier to read. Here’s an example:

I am a versatile graphic designer who specialises in modern, captivating designs for websites, apps, and other digital spaces. After mastering photoshop and illustrator, and producing award-winning work for a number of top startup companies, I would like to more into the corporate space where I will have more stability. In the next five years, I see myself managing a large team of graphic designers and I feel that NAME OF COMPANY would provide me that opportunity.


3. Maximise Your Relevant Experience

As you can see in the example above, it’s a very good idea to tailor each CV to the companies you are applying to. Read the job descriptions sent out by the hiring companies and try to show why you are the idea candidate.

Write a line or two of description next to each role you have had and explain what it taught you and where you excelled. Also include the skills you feel are relevant, including the languages you speak, the tools you know how to use, and your management or communications skills.

If you don’t have much work experience, don’t worry! Simply highlight the soft skills you have. Perhaps you took a job as a restaurant server and learned how to deal with difficult customers, or maybe you demonstrated your organisational skills while running a club at university, or during an internship.

How to write the perfect CV:Maximise your relevant experience | Oxford House Barcelona

4. Include Your Achievements

Whether academic, professional or sporting, your achievements say a lot about you. Make sure to note any promotions you’ve had (even if in a role unrelated to the position you are applying for), and medals you’ve won, or qualifications you’ve earned. They paint a picture of an ambitious person who is focused on doing well – and any manager would be pleased a person like that on their team.


5. Include Your Interests And Hobbies

While playing the flute or racing old cars might not be especially useful in the marketing or accounting role you hope to get, they do show that you are a human with interests outside of work. Include a brief section showing what makes you a little different. Often, this section gets a lot of attention in an interview because it allows the interviewer to get to know you better as a person.


6. Use An Online Tool To Format Your CV

Although the content of your CV is by far the most important thing, don’t overlook the style. In fact, it’s a good idea to make your CV a little eye-catching if possible. This will help recruiters remember who you are and find your CV when they are looking for it later.

There are lots of free CV templates online. Resume.io, for example, allows you to create and download one free CV – additional copies or versions will, however, cost money.

Glossary for Language Learners


Find the following words in the article and then write down any new ones you didn’t know.

Top of the pile (exp): The best, most relevant example of something.

Garner (v): to earn or collect something.

Hiring manager (n): the person responsible for employing a new person in a company.

Mastering (gerund): to become proficient at something.

Startup (n): a new company, especially in the technology area.

Tailor (v): to adapt something so that it is suitable.

Soft skills (n): communications, management and people skills.

Paint a picture (exp): to make someone imagine something.

Eye-catching (adj): to stand out and get someone’s attention.


exp = expression

v = verb

n = noun

adj = adjective

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