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Reasons Why You need to Use a Good CV Layout and Best Cover Letter

The layout of your CV is as important as its content purely because it says plenty about who you are both as a person and as a professional. A messy CV that doesn’t flow and isn’t consistent in terms of font and spacing says that you are probably a lazy person with poor attention to detail. A long-winded CV might cause you to come across as arrogant, whereas a CV that is too short will make it seem as though you are underqualified. The key lies in finding a balance and ensuring a logical progression of information.

Ultimately, the way in which you lay out your résumé will largely depend on your industry. For example, in the media and advertising industry, colourful and creative CVs are always welcome. However, in the banking or finance industry, a clear, concise and standardised version is best. While the overall design of your CV may differ from industry to industry, the order in which you present your potential future employer with important information about yourself remains the same.

Cover Page

It is essential that you include such details as your full name, contact number(s) and email address.

Cover Letter

A cover letter should be addressed directly to the person who posted the job ad. If the name of this person is unknown, simply address it to ‘to whom it may concern’. Personalise this letter by writing about why you believe you should be considered for the particular vacancy, briefly highlighting your strengths/skills/work experience according to the requirements mentioned in the ad.

Education

List your education information in reverse chronological order to ensure that the qualifications which are most important are the first ones that your potential future employer sees.

Work Experience

Again, list your work experience in reverse chronological order and be sure to include some details regarding your responsibilities at each company.

Skills

Avoid clichés and include skills most relevant to the position first.

References

Two references should suffice. Be sure to include the full names, phone numbers and email addresses of both references.

Making a good impression with your CV means that you will need to pay attention to all aspects of it – from the content to the layout

Source:PNET

Image: Unknown Source

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10 Things You Have to Consider When Drafting Your CV in Order to Make Your CV Standout

Your CV is the first thing that the employer or recruiter see. So it is your first impression before your first impression. So learn to master the art of creating a standout CV so that your looks more convincing than the rest.

Here are 10 things you must consider when drafting your CV

1. Be clear and structured

There is no way recruiters are going to read all the CVs in detail. They begin by ‘scanning’ the CVs received by reading them diagonally. Only those that catch their attention upon first reading will be examined more closely. Choose an attractive layout by structuring your ideas. For this purpose, use paragraphs and clear titles.

2. Avoid embellishments

A CV is a professional document. Don’t try to make it stand out by using an eccentric font or colours. Keep it simple, clear and to the point.

3. Be concise

Your CV isn’t a novel. Avoid telling the story of your life. Make sure the document doesn’t exceed 1 to 2 pages of A4. Indicate a few relevant elements regarding your professional experience (tasks, responsibilities, etc.) and possibly your education (courses, title of your dissertation, etc.).

4. Make sure you can be easily contacted

If the recruiter wants to contact you, they must be able to find your personal information at first glance. Put it at the top of the first page. Think of putting your age rather than your date of birth to make things easier for the person reading your CV.

5. Remove all unnecessary information

Avoid putting ‘curriculum vitae’ at the top of the document. Similarly, don’t put ‘name’ in front of your name, ‘address’ in front of your address, etc. If your CV is clear and well structured, there will be no room for uncertainty.

6. Put the emphasis on your experience

Your experience is what interests the recruiter above all. It is more important than your training and must therefore be mentioned first. Make sure it is relevant to the job for which you are applying. No professional experience yet? Then emphasise any placements and student jobs. If you really don’t have any relevant experience, begin with your education.

7. Only mention relevant training

Of course you have to mention your basic education and your specialisations relevant to the job, but make it brief. If you have a degree, the recruiter won’t be interested in your primary and secondary school studies, for instance. Have you done any training during your career that you think is pertinent to the job in question? Speak about it briefly.

8. Work in chronological order

Whether you are writing about your experience or your education, the most recent information is the most important. Always put it first.

9. Be precise

Don’t forget to mention your language and computer skills. It is essential but also mention your level of knowledge. For example: excellent, good, average, basic. Regarding languages, make a distinction between your reading, spoken and written abilities.

10. Personalise your CV

Your CV isn’t a standard document. It is in your best interest to adapt it according to the job you are targeting. Some experience or education/training might be more relevant for one job than for another.

Source: PNET

Image:Andrew Fennel

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10 Things to Do to Improve Your CV: No 10 Will Make You Laugh

No one enjoys spending hours on a job application, only to receive a polite rejection email a few weeks later.

When it happens once, it’s disappointing. But when you’re repeatedly overlooked for interviews, it can really get you down.

A strong CV can be your ticket to your dream role, or at the very least, ensure your application lands on the interview pile instead of headed for oblivion.

Here are 10 instantly actionable tweaks to give your CV the best chance of capturing the attention of recruiters.

1. Keep it short

Two pages is ideal for a CV. Bullet lists and dot points are your friend. People will stop reading if the information they need is buried in wordy paragraphs and unnecessary detail.

2. Start with a personal profile

Begin with three to four sentences that outline how your skills and experience meet the requirements of the role(s).

3. Consider grouping short-term positions

Employers want candidates who look like they’ll stay for the long haul.  It’s better to say that you worked in hospitality for two years rather than listing the ten different fast food outlets you briefly worked in during that time.

4. Focus on your accomplishments and skills instead of your employment history

If you’ve worked on short-term contracts, you could list these under Contract Work and highlight your achievements instead of detailing each role.

5. Add awards, prizes and other relevant information that will help you stand out from the crowd

Do you speak a second language? Volunteer in an area directly related to the role? Make sure you mention these.

6. Focus on what you have accomplished rather than your duties, then prove your claims

Did you add value, make or save the company money, solve a problem, make something more efficient, or attract new clients? Describe how you did this.

7. Make sure the recruiter can easily see your strengths

It’s almost always best to lead with your employment history unless you’ve recently graduated.

8. Use language that is easy to read and skim over

Spell out your qualifications and any acronyms. A recruiter probably won’t know that a DAgrEc is a Doctor of Agricultural Economics.  And it’s better to say you were a member of the Expenditure Review Committee rather than the ERC.

9. Explain noticeable gaps in employment

This is especially true if you were studying, completing projects, freelancing or undertaking research.

10. Get a professional email address

Email addresses like ilovecatsforever@hotmail.com will send your application straight to the bin.

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How to Become a Nurse in South Africa

Nurses contribute to the health care system by providing services to patients and their families. Nurses are currently in high demand and can be found working in a variety of medical centers. If you have always been interested in helping others, then you might be asking right now, “How do I become a nurse?” If so, then read on for more information about this exciting field.

What’s it like to be a nurse?

A nursing career includes helping patients in a variety of capacities. Nurses provide information to patients about their health care plan and educate them about any necessary treatments and medications. In hospitals, nurses tend to a patient’s personal needs, administer medications and work alongside doctors and families to ensure that patients receive the best medical care possible. Nurses can work in hospitals, schools, clinics and rehabilitation centers. They may work with patients of all ages and often work alongside elderly or youth patients. The best nurses are easily able to adapt their caregiving techniques to the unique needs of a patient. Although being a nurse can sometimes be stressful, most nurses report that helping others is a rewarding experience, and that the decision to become a nurse was the best thing for their career.

What are the education requirements?

The education required to become a nurse depends upon what type of nurse you would like to become and any career goals that you might have for advancement in the field. Many vocational schools offer certificate programs in nursing which will allow you to become a nursing assistant. Licensed vocational nurses often choose this type of training and find that they can become a nurse in as little as one year. Licensed vocational nurses work with registered nurses and typically provide basic care for patients that include monitoring basic health information and personal care services. An associate’s degree in nursing can usually be completed in two years and is a great step for anyone who would like to become a registered nurse. A bachelor’s degree in nursing is required in order to become a registered nurse. Registered Nurses work independently beneath a doctor’s instruction to provide patient care and services. For people who would like to pursue an advanced degree, a master’s degree in nursing is required to become an advanced practice registered nurse. These nurses are able to diagnose illnesses and prescribe medications. A nurse practitioner is one type of advanced practice registered nurse. Upon graduation, a licensing exam is required to become a licensed nurse.Depending upon the educational program selected, you could become a nurse in anywhere from one to six years.

What is the job outlook for nurses?

Nursing careers are one of the highest growing careers demanded within the healthcare system. Graduates of nursing programs can expect to be able to work within many different areas. Currently, there is an increase in demand for nurses who can work with older members of the population. The average salary for a registered nurse can typically fall anywhere between $45,000 and $65,000. Obtaining an advanced degree can help you to be competitive in the job market, while also increasing your salary. Depending upon your training, job opportunities in schools, hospitals and clinics are usually available in almost any geographical area. Because nursing is a hands-on job, participating in a volunteer program or internship can be very helpful for finding a nursing position upon completing your education. If you would like to become a nurse, the first step of creating an educational plan is vital to your later success in nursing and can lead to a lifetime of enjoyable work helping others in the medical field.

Find Nursing Training in South Africa

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How to Become a Police Officer in South Africa

A profession as a cop or police officer can be a great option for those who are interested in protecting and serving their communities and bringing criminals to justice. Cops are important parts of any community, and can do anything from writing tickets to arresting criminals and responding to emergencies. Have you ever wondered, “How do I become a cop?”

So what’s it Like to be a Cop? Many people who are interested in the field of criminal justice ask themselves this same question. But before you decide that you want to be a cop, you should become familiar with what the job is like. Most police offers, on a regular basis, are assigned to a specific area of their department or jurisdiction and work a set shift during the day or night. They receive calls and dispatch requests through a radio throughout the day, which they respond to by arriving on scene and dealing with various situations that can arise. A police officer must be ready to face anything that comes his or her way.

As you can imagine, becoming a cop is not something that can be done overnight and that takes years of education and training to accomplish. For starters, most police departments these days prefer to hire officers who have a Bachelor’s Degree is criminal justice, or a related field. This is not usually a concrete requirement, but it can be.

Educational requirements are just the beginning of the process, however. Candidates looking to become a cop must also go through many screening tests to ensure that they have what it takes to become a cop. For starters, many departments will require physical ability tests and psychological tests before even considering a candidate. This can include anything from passing a polygraph test with detailed questions about the candidate’s past, to having psychiatric evaluations done. Background checks are also run in detail, and it is difficult for anyone with a criminal record to become a cop.

Finally, once all of these requirements are met, a candidate must go through approximately six months of training in what is often referred to as “Academy.” This involves physical training, simulations or potential incidents a cop may get into, and other skills needed on the job.

For those who want to become a cop, they may also be wondering about the types of opportunities out there today and the pay involved. Most officers start out at close to $30,000 per year, though this varies depending on the specific department. Most officers receive promotions each year, and can eventually work their way up the ranks as well.

There will always be job opportunities out there for cops because all communities need some kind of police protection. However, in times of economic crises, some cities have cut their funding to police departments. Still, the prospects for finding a job as a police officer are high, so long as one is willing to go through the intense and rigorous training involved to work as a law enforcement officer. From there, one can enjoy a rewarding and exciting job protecting and serving the people of their community and gaining respect along the way.

Find Police Traineeships when they become available

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