Articles & Insights

Today’s CV – the Covid effect

Added - 17/02/2021

The Covid-19 pandemic has significantly changed the landscape of the job market and many recruiting managers have been forced to adapt their outlook on resourcing requirements and look at candidates in a new light. 

Requirements for every role will differ, but we have found that there are some key skills and strengths that recruiters appear to be valuing across the board.

The pandemic has been challenging to navigate but most of us have enhanced our skillset throughout this period without even realising it – its time to cash in on this!

Your Skills and Strengths

The pandemic has forced us to become open to change and much more agile in the way that we work. Recruiters appreciate more than ever the importance of employees who can think on their feet, demonstrate problem solving expertise, adapt to change and reprioritise tasks in order to fit with the ever-changing environment and business need. Make sure you emphasise these skills in your CV.

Using the Star format (Situation, Task, Action and Result) think about clearly demonstrating the below on your CV;

  • An example of a time you have successfully adapted and excelled during a period of change.
  • A time where you have identified and overcome a problem or ‘thought outside of the box’.
  • A situation where you have performed under pressure and delivered a positive result.
  • An occasion where you have provided support to others.
  • An example which demonstrates your ability to use your own initiative (working in a remote environment this could be key).
  • How you have embraced technology.
  • A time when you have demonstrated resilience.

Remember that your CV is your sales pitch, its your opportunity to get ahead of the crowd. So rather than just showing a successful result, try and quantity your successes in order to add ‘clout’:

  • Did you increase engagement by 90%?
  • Did you double sales?
  • Did you increase customer satisfaction scores from 5 to 10?
  • Did you generate 16 new leads a month?
  • Did you increase website traffic by 10%?

Think about how your successes can be measured to help you add value and to help evidence the claims you are making! Anyone can say they have provided good customer service… but how can you prove it?

Navigating any employment gaps

Recruiters are less concerned about gaps in employment - don’t be afraid to talk about redundancy – there is no stigma attached and employers will be very aware that many businesses have had to make tough restricting decisions over the last year or so. So, whilst you shouldn’t be afraid to show any gaps in employment on your CV, you do need to be prepared to talk around these at interview. A recruiter will be interested in how you’ve used that time away from employment.

  • Did you upskill or retrain?
  • What did you learn about yourself during this time?
  • Did you don your ‘teaching hat’ and undertake home schooling?
  • Did you help others in the community who were vulnerable?
  • Did you take up a new hobby or take on a project or challenge?

Unemployment can be mentally challenging for the most positive of people. A recruiter will be interested in how you have stayed positive and focused during this time and how you have demonstrated resilience in these challenging times.

Covering Letters – Make the effort

Although it has always been a winning formula to include a covering letter when submitting your CV, this is now more important than ever. Competition is rife and the hiring manager will notice the level of effort that has gone into an application. Tailoring your covering letter to each and every role you apply for, by mirroring the sought criteria in the Job Description will almost certainly give you an edge over other candidates.

Attention to Detail

They say that it’s the small things that form the big picture – the same applies when writing your CV. Pay attention to the detail to ensure that your skills and strengths are not overlooked:

  • Check your spelling and grammar.
  • Address your correspondence correctly.
  • Be proud of your presentation.
  • Use a professional email address.
  • Make the recruiters life as easy as possible – include all your contact details.
  • Maintain a polite and professional demeanour throughout any correspondence.
For more information about our CV support please contact us.

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