How to write a CV in English To Impress Your Possible Future Employer – Whether you are a native or non-native English speaker, applying for a job in an English speaking country can be a difficult and scary task.

In many Business English classes, you learn necessary skills such as how to have a successful interview. However, before you even get to the interview stage you need to impress your possible future employer with your CV.

What is a CV?

A CV (Curriculum Vitae), or résumé, is a document that you need to give or send to a company if you would like to apply for a job. It should include details of your education and employment history as well as your skills, qualifications and abilities (remember, you need to try to sell yourself in your CV!)

Read: What To Include In a Résumé?

What information should I include in my CV? A CV should include information relevant to the job you are applying for. Before you start writing your CV, read the job advert carefully so you know exactly which requirements they are looking for.

So how to write a CV in English?

How to write a CV in English To Impress Your Possible Future Employer

It is very important to structure your CV well and use headings so the person reading it can find information quickly. You can use the following headings:

Personal Details:

  • Include your name, address, telephone number and email address.
  • You do not usually need to include your date of birth, nationality or a photograph of yourself if you are applying for a job in the UK (check if the job advert asks for these though).
  • You could also include a short personal profile to introduce yourself and list your main skills and experience relevant to the job you are applying for.

Employment History:

  • Start with your current job (if you have one) and work backwards through the other jobs you’ve had.
  • For each job, include the name of the company, the location of the company (e.g. London, UK), your position in the company and the dates you worked there (if it is your current job, you can write ‘May 2013 – present’).
  • For each job, include a short outline of your role, responsibilities and skills used, highlighting any that are particularly relevant to the job you are applying for.
  • Use short sentences that are to the point and highlight your key skills (make them bold).
  • Use action words which will have more of an impact, e.g. developing, leading, planning, organising.
  • Don’t leave any gaps in your employment history. Always explain why you did not work during that time.

Education and qualifications:

  • Include your university qualifications and any other qualifications you have (e.g. exams you took at school).
  • If you are still studying, make this clear and say when your course is going to end. Skills and Achievements:
  • List any relevant skills you have, e.g. languages and language certificates, IT skills (which computer programmes you can use), driving license.
  • Include details of courses or training you have completed.
  • Write about other professional achievements or awards you have received. Make sure they are relevant to the job you are applying for though.

Interests:

 Write a short list of your interests outside of work.

 Include a range of different interests and try not to include too many hobbies that you do alone (the employer might think you do not have people skills).

 Try to include hobbies that are relevant to the job or show that you have additional skills such as working in a team, planning or organising.

References:

 Many people do not add the details of referees to their CV. You can write “References available on request” and give details at a later stage.

 If you want to include referees, it is usual to write the names and contact details of two people who know you well, either current/previous employers or a tutor/teacher.

 Before you add their details to your CV, make sure they are happy to give a reference for you.

Employment History:

 Start with your current job (if you have one) and work backwards through the other jobs you’ve had.

 For each job, include the name of the company, the location of the company (e.g. London, UK), your position in the company and the dates you worked there (if it is your current job, you can write ‘May 2013 – present’).

 For each job, include a short outline of your role, responsibilities and skills used, highlighting any that are particularly relevant to the job you are applying for.

 Use short sentences that are to the point and highlight your key skills (make them bold).

 Use action words which will have more of an impact, e.g. developing, leading, planning, organising.

 Don’t leave any gaps in your employment history. Always explain why you did not work during that time.

Education and qualifications:

 Include your university qualifications and any other qualifications you have (e.g. exams you took at school).

 If you are still studying, make this clear and say when your course is going to end.

Skills and Achievements:

 List any relevant skills you have, e.g. languages and language certificates, IT skills (which computer programmes you can use), driving license.

 Include details of courses or training you have completed.

 Write about other professional achievements or awards you have received. Make sure they are relevant to the job you are applying for though.

Interests:

 Write a short list of your interests outside of work.

 Include a range of different interests and try not to include too many hobbies that you do alone (the employer might think you do not have people skills).

 Try to include hobbies that are relevant to the job or show that you have additional skills such as working in a team, planning or organising.

References:

 Many people do not add the details of referees to their CV. You can write “References available on request” and give details at a later stage.

 If you want to include referees, it is usual to write the names and contact details of two people who know you well, either current/previous employers or a tutor/teacher.

 Before you add their details to your CV, make sure they are happy to give a reference for you.

At the end…

 Check your CV very carefully and make sure there are no spelling or grammatical mistakes. If employers see these they will usually discard the CV straight away. If you are a non-native speaker and you’re studying at an English language school, ask your teacher if they can check it for you before you send it.

 Make sure your CV is not too long. It should be a maximum of two sides of A4 paper.

 Your CV should be relevant to the job you are applying for and show appropriate skills.

 Do not copy sentences from the job advert you are applying to.

 Make sure your CV is easy to read. Use a simple font and lay it out clearly with headings.

That’s all what you need to know about how to write a CV in English.