Writing your CV can be a difficult task, especially if you’re starting from scratch. Try to keep your CV clearly formatted and short enough for a recruiter to scan over it quickly and most importantly, tailor it to the role you’re applying for.
We've listed some basic rules here with the first two tips being specific to military veterans. You'll find lots of general information in our CVs, applications and interviews section of the website and links to more specific advice about military CVs in the resources section on this page.
- Don’t be afraid to sell the skills and capabilities you have developed in the Armed Forces. Many of them will be very relevant to many industries in the civilian world. Many of your technical and transferrable skills will be valued by employers.
- Look at the job description and specification of the roles you’re applying for and try to use a similar style of language to describe your own skills and experience. Even job titles can be adapted to be more appropriate to the area that you’re applying for. Avoid using military jargon and try to use terminology that most employers will understand.
- Focus more on recent and relevant: use your CV or application to highlight skills or experience that match your career goals or job you’re applying for.
- Show responsibilities and achievements in the job history section. Try to use action words such as organised, completed or led, and quantify your examples to emphasise what you have achieved (e.g. Delivered key workshops to over 300 staff within the organisation and gained a 90% positive feedback rating.)
- Make sure your CV is targeted – no one CV fits every role – ensure it’s tailored towards the role you want to apply for.
- Try to keep your CV to two pages and avoid long paragraphs. Your CV needs to be concise and easy to pick out key information.
- Make sure there are no spelling or grammatical mistakes in your CV or application – use a spell checker but read through it again or ideally get someone else to proofread it.
- Use the 'STAR' approach when using examples in applications or CVs to help structure your answers more effectively. Remember Situation, Task, Action, Result.
- Make sure your CV is well presented and looks professional. Look at examples to help you.
Get your CV checked
If you'd like your CV checked by one of the Disabled Veterans' Careers team tick the 'Other' option and type in some additional information to request specific help as a military veteran on our contact a careers adviser page.