Personalisation is Key to CV Success

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How do you get my attention? How do you keep it? How do you get me to engage?

I receive up to 20 cold calls/sales emails/LinkedIn sales messages per day. I skim read and delete 99% of these. The 1% which pique my interest do so because the sender has genuinely tried to understand my needs, my business or an issue I might be dealing with. Going to the effort of making it personal ensures a response (and a polite decline if I don’t want what they’re selling).

We talk about personalisation all the time with our bids and proposals. We highlight the importance of producing an executive summary and proposal that is absolutely laser focussed on addressing our client’s needs. But when it comes to addressing your own needs – your career for instance – are you really going the extra mile to personalise your approach to your target employer?

Think of the last time you saw a job advert that really caught your eye. After the initial excitement comes the application process. Did you simply add your latest job to your CV, update some dates, drag in half of your current job description, hoping your target client would decipher just how good you were for the role?

Or are you in the 1% of our profession who made your CV personal? Did you fully deconstruct the client’s job description and ideal candidate profile? Did you identify which of your skills, experiences and achievements specifically align? Did you re-write the content in your potential new employer’s language, in a way that makes sense to them and plays to their business goals?

More importantly, did you provide evidence? Did you remove irrelevant content which adds absolutely no value? Did you categorically state why you want the role, and why you should be the preferred candidate? Your CV must articulate a clear value proposition of ‘why you’; if it doesn’t, don’t be disappointed if you fail to receive constructive feedback about why it wasn’t.

I’ve seen far too many people miss out on brilliant jobs because they assume it’s the employer’s job to make sense of their CV. Remember, a CV shouldn’t be about ‘what I can do’. It should absolutely be about ‘what I can do for you’.

BQ18 is absolutely loaded with more quick wins and secrets to success. With 24 brilliant articles and four fabulous Win in 60 Seconds videos, our panel of experts have once again generously shared their wisdom and experience to help you develop industry leading knowledge and skills and, ultimately, win more often.

This article was written by Martin Smith.

Martin is passionate about helping clients win new business. With increasingly savvy procurement professionals, more competition and new technology changing the way we bid, it is his job as Managing Director to ensure Bid Solutions provides market leading people, tools, training and solutions to help you win more.

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