Starting your career in Canada can be a scary prospect, but the first step is writing a great Canadian-style resume that will get you noticed and help you land the job of your dreams. Follow these top tips and you will never go wrong.
- Keep it short: No prospective employer wants to read more than 2 pages of a CV, so keep it simple and cut down on the extra details.
- Customize your resume: Each prospective job is looking for something different, so your CV should be changed to highlight your unique skills that reflect exactly what is required for that particular job.
- Use keywords: Most employers will glance over your CV, so why not make it easy for them with key phrases that will grab their attention. Use headings like “Highlights of qualifications”, “Professional experience” and “Education” as your main points.
- Focus on formatting: A neat, clear and consistent CV can be one of your greatest assets. Make sure that your fonts are all the same, that you use the same style of bullet points and that all of the content is aligned. The most important point is to ensure that there are no spelling mistakes anywhere on your page. The key is to proofread and get someone else to double check your work before you send anything out.
- Volunteer work is a plus: Canadian employers in particular love to see that you have volunteered your time to a worthy cause or two.
- Exclude a few words: Avoid placing the words “CV” or “Resume” at the top of your page.
- Use Social Media: Employers love looking at your social media profiles, especially your LinkedIn page which should highlight your main career milestones. Unfortunately they also love to have a look at your personal Facebook and Twitter pages, so you should always be aware of what is readily available on the page. Any embarrassing photographs and funny messages shouldn’t be used as a tick against you.
- Include an email address: Your contact email address should be professional, so skip the funny nicknames and nonsensical addresses.
- Leave out the references: If any prospective employee wants to see your references, these should be available on request.
- Show that you want to build a career: Most employers want to hire people who are going to stay at their company for a substantial amount of time, so do not mention that you are on a “gap year” or “1-year working visa.”
Follow these top 10 tips and you will have a Canadian-style resume that ensures you stand out from the rest of the applicants.