CV tips

What is a CV?

  • A concise summary of your personal information.
  • Contains ALL the essential information about you that an employer needs to know.
  • It should be short, relevant and to the point.

Basic resume format

  • Personal details – name, address, contact number, date of birth
  • Educational qualifications
  • Other courses
  • Work experience
  • Interests and hobbies
  • References

How and when can you use a CV?

Almost all job and scholarship notices will specifically require you to submit your resume. So you should always have it ready. Your CV can:

  • be attached to an application letter
  • be left at an office after a personal visit
  • help you quickly access important details when talking over the phone or in an interview or when completing an application form
  • given to your contacts (your network of friends, family and other people) so they know your skills and educational background
  • given to other people in a panel interview situation (spare copies)

Length of resume

At least one page long, but do not overcrowd the page. Have a second page if there is too much information, but spread it out over the page. Do not have half pages.

Custom made resumes for each job application?

If you have access to a computer, it is a good idea to have a master copy of your resume and then revise it to suit the particular requirements of each job to highlight your skills and qualifications that are most relevant to the specific job.

This will help your application stand out amongst several other applications for the same job position.

Name: Ahmed Moosa

Address: Bahaaree Villaage-aage,
Bodurasgefaanu Magu, Male’

Telephone: 77XXXXX

Centre for Higher Secondary Education, 2013
Edexcel GCE A’level
English C Mathematics C
Accounting B Commerce A

Higher Secondary Certificate
Islam A Dhivehi B

Special Skills:
Advanced Computer Course at Cyrix College.
Can work basic office machinery – fax machine, photocopy machine, scanner, etc.

Work Experience:
Volunteer at ARC, Jan 2015 to present
School Work Experience - two weeks in September 2012 at MIFCO

Interests and Hobbies:
Participated in the national swimming team.
Enjoy reading business magazines.

1. Mr Hussain Firaz, Mathematics Teacher, CHSE, ph.: 99XXXXX.
2. Mr Moosa Ali, IT Teacher, Cyrix College, ph.: 99XXXXX.
3. Ms Niuma Hameed, Executive Director, ARC, ph.: 77XXXXX.

  • It is important to have a phone number that the employer could contact you on. If you don’t have a home phone or personal mobile phone, make arrangements with a family member or friend to pass on the message for you and write their number on your resume.
  • Ahmed Moosa has identified his already acquired office skills.
  • Referee contact numbers are also given.
  • However, the CV is overcrowded – he did not enter a blank line separating each section from the next. This makes it difficult to read and differentiate between the sections.
  • Line alignment is not consistent. Some areas are centred (in the Education section). Others are left-aligned. Some others are slightly indented from the left hand margin.

Ph: (+960) 99XXXXX

Hulhumale Flat 03-01-XX
Roashanee Magu

Date of birth:
13th August 1990

University of South Australia (UNISA), 2010 – 2013, Bachelor of Horticulture
Centre for Higher Secondary Studies, GCE A’level, 2007 – 2009

Work Experience:
1. July 2009 to present, freelance Gardening Consultant
2. February 2012 to January 2013, Intern, Department of Agricultre, UNISA
3. July 2009 – January 2010, Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs

Interests and Hobbies:
Agriculture and gardening
Exploring history and culture

1. Dr Martin Walker, Senior Lecturer, Department of Agriculture, University of South Australia, email:, ph.: (+61) 344 XXX XXX.
2. Mr Ismail Ikraam, Director, Ministry of Environment, ph.: 33XXXXX.

  • Having a blank line between each section has improved overall readability of this CV.
  • Even though name and phone number are centre aligned at the top, it does not clash with the formatting of the rest of the resume.
  • Contact numbers for referees are also given and easy to find.

Jenny C Citizen
6/710 Main Road
Mytown NSW 2909
Telephone: 02 555 5575
Facsimile: 02 555 5555 for messages only
Personal home page:

I am seeking to continue my successful clerical/administrative career following a break from full time employment

I have developed a broad range of skills which suit the needs of many employers
I am able to confidently carry out the duties you are seeking with a minimum of instruction

Effective Communications/Customer Service/People Skills
- My major work experience has been in front desk/public contact positions and I am proficient in all duties associated with a front office situation
- I have developed excellent interpersonal skills and effective communication skills
- I am quite confident and friendly when meeting and assisting people on all levels and am able to provide them with a quality service
- I am able to efficiently, courteously and tactfully handle clients either in person or over the telephone
Clerical Skills/Organisational Skills
- I am proficient in all duties associated with an office situation, including dealing with customer enquiries, reception duties, collecting and handling money, banking, filing, typing, etc. My present typing speed is 55 wpm
- I can operate various types of telephone systems and office equipment
- I have the good organisational skills essential to the smooth running of an office, including the ordering of office requirements
- have developed effective liaison skills to assist with the organisation of, and communication of information, in relation to seminars, meetings etc

Computer Skills
- I have had experience with a variety of different computer programs and systems, including (on IBM) programs which record client details, rental/landlord accounts details, student records, and word processing (including WordPerfect 5.2 ∓ 6.1).
- I have some experience on Mac systems with database and word processing
- I find I can pick up quite quickly on new procedures/ tasks as they are explained to me.


April 1995 - now Casual Clerk Grade 1/2 Department of Water Resources Mytown
June 1992 - March 1995 Casual Reception, Banking, Office Duties, Library and Science assistant Various local high schools including Wombat, Walker Wells, Mytown, James Cook, Lizard Park, Ashfield
February - June 1994 Part time Liaison Assistant Market's Bizarre Mytown
May 1985 - March 1992 Reception, Typing, Office Duties/Supervisor Wombat and Possum Real Estate Canley Wells

Secretarial Studies Course, Wombat Technical College, Gum Flat, 1983.
School Certificate, Mytown High School, Mytown , 1979-1982.


"Mrs Citizen proved to be a competent, reliable worker who related well to her colleagues. She was punctual and readily undertook any task she was assigned."
Mrs Rosalie Went, Principal, Mytown High School, Mytown , Ph: (02) 555 8654.
"Mrs Citizen always approaches her work in a professional, pleasant and positive manner, ensuring effective and satisfactory outcomes."
Mr Ben Doone, Deputy Principal, Mytown High School, Mytown , Ph: (02) 555 8654.
"Jenny was always a punctual, reliable and diligent employee. Her approach to our clients and customers was always of the highest standard."
Mr Darren Wombat, Manager, Wombat and Possum Real Estate, Canley Wells, Ph: (02) 555 4567.
Other useful changes you could make to this resume format include:
  • In the above example, the use of Action Words could have helped avoid starting sentences with "I" over and over again on the page...
  • Adding extra blank lines (white space) between sections - in fact, the example above could be spaced over about three pages using additional white space:
    • Page 1 - Contact Details and Career Objective
    • Page 2 - Highlights and Personal Skills
    • Page 3 - Work History, Education and References
  • Centering the introductory sections - address/contact details, career objective, highlights of experience
  • Centering the various section headings
  • If references aren't quite ready when you create your resume, either leave the section out, or say "Can be supplied on request" (making sure you can)