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Write a CV that stands out

Job hunting offers diverse opportunities on different platforms, from job websites to social media. There's a wide variety of jobs out there, and even if the job titles differ, the roles they involve often share common elements. So, what guides candidates when they decide to apply? As of May 2023, a comprehensive survey we conducted with 1,375 respondents reveals the key factors that sway job seekers' application decisions:

  • Exciting Job Titles (32%): For many, the job title serves as a magnetic draw, enticing them to take a closer look at a job posting.

  • Details on Job Descriptions (17%): A significant portion of applicants focuses on the nitty-gritty of the job description and its alignment with their aspirations.

  • Attractive Salaries (25%): Monetary considerations play a substantial role, with a quarter of respondents looking at salary details before considering a career move.

  • Company Reputation Matters (17%): The employer's name carries weight, influencing decisions for nearly one in five applicant

  • Job Location (9%): For some, the physical setting is crucial, making location a deciding factor in their application choices.

While the survey underscores the appeal of job titles, job seekers need to embrace a more complete approach when applying for positions. Randomly submitting applications without thoroughly scrutinizing the job opportunity can result in mismatches that can be frustrating for both the applicant and the employer. And worst, it may affect the personal branding of the job seeker.

At Black Pearl, a leading HR, consulting, and recruitment firm headquartered in Abu Dhabi with a global presence, including offices in Dubai, Manila, Mumbai, and Auckland, we advocate for a thorough and strategic approach to job applications. Our experience in the field has shown us that candidates who invest time in reviewing the complete job information and customizing their CV accordingly stand a far better chance of securing the right opportunities.

Before you submit your application to a prospective employer, here are essential steps to ensure your application stands out in the competitive job market:

1. Review the Job Advertisement:

Dive into the job advertisement to uncover specific requirements, qualifications, and responsibilities. Take note of the skills and qualifications the employer is seeking.

2. Customize Your CV:

Tailor your CV to align with the job's unique requirements, highlighting the skills, experiences, and qualifications that resonate with the job description.

3. Update Your CV:

Ensure your CV has your latest work experiences, education, certifications, and contact information.

4. Proofread Your CV:

Give your CV a meticulous once-over, checking for spelling, grammar, and formatting errors. Make sure it's well-organized and reader-friendly.

5. Include Accurate Contact Information:

Ensure your contact details (phone number and email address) are current and accurate. If you are currently not in the country yet, find a way to mention it in your CV.

6. Highlight Achievements:

Use specific numbers and metrics to quantify your accomplishments and contributions in previous roles. Your achievements can give some level of confidence to the candidate about your capabilities as a potential candidate for the role.

7. Incorporate Relevant Keywords:

Incorporate keywords from the job advertisement, as many employers use applicant tracking systems (ATS) for initial screening powered by AI technology.

8. Showcase Relevant Experience: - Highlight work experience and skills that directly relate to the job you're applying for. It is highly suggested to indicate the month and year you have started and ended your work in each company you have worked for.

9. Include Education and Certifications: - List your educational background, degrees, certifications, and relevant coursework.

10. Maintain Consistent Formatting: - Uphold a professional and consistent format throughout your CV, employing the same font, headings, and bullet points.

11. Optional References: - Consider including references or indicating their availability upon request. But before including any of your references' information, please make sure that you ask permission from them.

12. Save Your CV Smartly: - Keep your CV in a Word or PDF format. However, when dealing with a Recruitment Agency, we highly recommend that you provide your consultant a Word format of your CV.

13. Naming the File: - Adopt a clear and easily identifiable naming convention for your CV file, typically using your name and the job title.

14. Research your prospective employer: - Dedicate time to understanding the company and its culture, allowing you to tailor your application effectively.

15. Leverage Networking: - If possible, tap into your network for insights or recommendations within the company.

Following these comprehensive steps will make your CV well-prepared and strategically aligned with the job advertisement. Remember that adhering to any additional instructions specified in the job posting is crucial to enhance your chances of capturing the attention of potential employers. Your CV isn't just a document; it's your ticket to your dream job, so make it count.

Black Pearl is a leading HR consulting and recruitment agency in the UAE and the wider GCC region, covering Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman, Kuwait, and Bahrain. We have specialist recruitment partners handling various roles from junior to senior positions in healthcare/medical, engineering, construction, property, facilities management, FMCG, supply chain/logistics, defense, aviation, financial services, banking, oil and gas, and government firms. Our unmatched recruitment service aims to help our clients find the best expatriates and nationals here and overseas.


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