Botox your CV and online profile

Curriculum vitae written on a typewriter A good CV or resume is critical for the start of any job search

In many countries getting a job has never been more difficult and with online applications and social networking to contend with, the world of job seeking has changed dramatically in just a short period of time.

So you have to have the best possible resume, which can be on paper or even on your own personal website.

You also have to be aware that everything that can be found about you online could be the thing that gets you the job or gifts it to one of your competitors.

The task of pulling together all the information is not for the faint-hearted.

Jobseekers soon realise that building a digital profile, while promoting themselves in social media, is a full time job, in itself.

Botox your CV

Lisa's four secrets of CV success

Lisa Johnson Mandel
  • Put the most important information first - your best career achievement. It might have happened 10 years ago, but you want it to be at the top.
  • In the USA stick to two pages. If you can't condense everything into this, you're going to give employers the impression you've had too many jobs.
  • Most resumes are read initially by a computer, so key words are important. Look for the job ads, see which words they are using most and make sure you pack your resume full of those words.
  • Style and size of font are so important because you want to make it readable. Make it easy on their eyes. Put the most important things in bold.

These days you're so much more than just your resume on paper," says Lisa Johnson Mandell, author of Career Comeback - Repackage Yourself to Get the Job You Want.

CV Checklist

how to get a job now branding

It may seem obvious, but every CV should include:

  • Your name, address and contact details
  • Your work history, starting with your most recent job
  • Your qualifications and education history
  • In many countries you don't need to include your date of birth because of age-discrimination legislation

She should know, at the age of 49, Johnson Mandell, lost her job when the website she worked for closed down.

As a Los Angeles-based writer, broadcaster and film critic, she had years of experience - but whenever she applied for a new job, it went to someone else.

After some soul-searching with her husband, she concluded her resume aged her and dwelled too much on the past.

In many countries you don't have to include your age on your CV, because of age-discrimination laws.

"I took off all the work experience that was 15 years or older because nothing was relevant after that," she says.

She also removed the year of her college graduation and focused on her current skills.

The resume became age anonymous and, in its new form, produced instant results.

"I got responses to my resumes within 20 minutes of sending them out and I got job offers within two weeks," she says, adding she was stunned by the results.

The writer now coaches jobseekers on how to give their resumes a makeover.

"These days, people's attention spans are short," she says.

"If you can't sell yourself and put the best stuff you've got in the first third of your resume, they're going to get bored and toss it.

"Nobody has time to really dig into a resume and look at the details.

"They want to know right at the beginning, 'What can you do for me?'"

Making social networks count

Tips from an employer

Michael Vacarro
  • Stand out from the crowd. Make your resume look unique.
  • Appeal to a recruiter's personal side. Everyone uses the same generic terms, "I'm a go-getter, I'm a multi-tasker." It's going to be your individual experiences that's going to make me want to hire you.
  • Talk about your personal interests, because we don't hire a salesperson, we hire individuals.
  • Sad to say, but age matters. A lot of the time, the younger set are more willing to put in the time and the effort to make something happen. I think older people have to try to be more aggressive.

Michael Vaccaro is a recruiter with the home improvement division of Sears

Michael Weiss, a Los Angeles-based marketing consultant, says the resume should complement a jobseeker's digital profile.

This can include a personal website and a presence on networking services. The net effect should be to make an individual stand out from the crowd.

"When you are looking for a job, when you're out there, the goal is, 'How do I differentiate myself?'" says Mr Weiss.

But he adds that jobseekers should not feel the need to have a presence on every social media platform, because there are too many to choose from.

"It's forced people to step back and think about the strategy of the story they want to tell," he says.

"There are different stories that you are going to tell on Facebook, that you are going to tell on Twitter, that you are going to tell on Tumblr, that you can't tell on Instagram. It's different for all of them."

Above all, Mr Weiss says, people must tell a constant story, and it is up to individuals to decide how they should present themselves.

It may be acceptable to present a less corporate image on a personal Facebook page, while maintaining a professional profile on LinkedIn.

"It all comes down to your personal brand," he says.

These jobseekers are getting advice from a woman who transformed her CV - and her employment prospects

"You really want to be accurate online, you don't want to embellish stories, you don't want to undersell them, you don't want to oversell them, you just want to be right on point.

"The other thing you want to do, is you want to be authentic. You want to be real. You want to be who they expect you to be and I really want people to focus on being current.

"Social media is 24/7, 365 and the door to your story is always open. If you have something posted from a month ago, you already look old."

Mr Weiss also warns job-seekers - especially new graduates - that they should clean up their digital profile.

Party photos posted on Facebook during their years at college may not be appropriate for someone trying to enter the corporate world.

"I know it was a lot of fun, I know you had a great time, but you didn't have a filter on for four years or eight years or however long you've been on there."

Mr Weiss adds: "I think there's a responsibility on yourself in applying a filter when you post content.

"I think there's also a responsibility to yourself to know that there's stuff out there that you need to find, just in case."

More Business stories

RSS

Business Live

  1.  
    07:59: North Sea oil outlook BBC Radio 4

    Ian Theophilus an oil and gas consultant tells Today he expects a number of North Sea oil projects - planned with a higher oil price in mind - may be reduced or cut altogether. He says he is very worried about the prospect for North Sea oil in 2015. He says he and colleagues "remember the late 1980s and 1990s" when the oil price was between $9 and $11 per barrel and "everything was stuck". "The chances are that could happen again," he adds.

     
  2.  
    07:51: Keeping the lights on

    Reacting to the completion of the energy auction Energy Secretary Ed Davey, said: "This is fantastic news for bill-payers and businesses. We are guaranteeing security at the lowest cost for consumers. We've done this by ensuring that we get the best out of our existing power stations and unlocking new investment in flexible plant."

     
  3.  
    07:41: Keeping the lights on

    Companies will be paid £19.40 per kilowatt by the government to provide backup power following an auction process that has been going on all week. The new scheme is designed to ensure the nation has a sufficient energy buffer to cope with peak demand - usually over the winter.

     
  4.  
    07:32: Premier League TV review
    Premier League logo on a football

    Ofcom has launched a consultation on its view that the current division of Premier League and Champions League football between Sky and BT harms competition between pay TV retailers. Back in 2010 Ofcom ordered Sky to offer its sports channels to rivals at a price set by the regulator. It is now reviewing whether that has helped competition and "remains appropriate". There will be a second phase of the review in 2015.

     
  5.  
    07:20: North Sea oil crisis Radio 5 live
    North Sea oil platform

    It's extremely difficult to tell if the North Sea oil business is heading into the same kind of crisis that it saw in 1986, says Aberdeen businessman Charles Skene on Radio 5 live. Kenny Anderson the boss of an Aberdeen construction firm remembers the "strife" caused in 1986 when oil fell to $36 per barrel. But predicting oil prices is an "impossible game" he points out.

     
  6.  
    07:10: Samsung shareholder payout

    Samsung Electronics is considering increasing its dividend payout this year by between 30% and 50% compared to 2013.

     
  7.  
    06:56: Nigerian currency crisis BBC Radio 4

    Phillip Walker of the Economist Intelligence Unit, tells Today the crisis facing Nigeria is far bigger than the one facing Russia. Nigeria's currency the naira has fallen 15% against the US dollar this year forcing the country's central bank to impose foreign currency trading controls. "Nigeria has a bigger population than Russia, its economy relies on oil exports more than Russia, so it's a big problem," Mr Walker says.

     
  8.  
    06:48: Gas prices BBC Radio 4

    Professor Green says energy suppliers have an eye on politics at the moment. He says Labour leader Ed Miliband's promise to freeze energy prices for 20 months if his party wins next year's election may mean suppliers will keep prices artificially high despite currently benefitting from lower gas costs.

     
  9.  
    06:34: Gas prices BBC Radio 4

    While falling oil prices have recently caught the attention of many, the cost of gas has also been coming down. That's because demand in Europe has been falling due to a relatively warm winter so far. Richard Green professor of sustainable energy business at Imperial College London tells Today we shouldn't expect lower energy bills are a result. That's because energy suppliers are selling us gas they bought at last year's prices.

     
  10.  
    06:32: Asian markets

    Asian stock markets have had a mixed session. They Nikkei 225 is up more than 2%. Hong Kong's Hang Seng is up 1.4%. Shares in Shanghai have fallen back after hitting a four-year high in early trading. The Shanghai composite is down 0.1%.

     
  11.  
    06:21: China recalculates growth
    Chinese flag

    China's economy is bigger than originally thought. The government has revised up the size of the economy in 2013 by 3.4% to 58.8 trillion yuan ($9.5 trillion). The increase was mainly accounted for by a greater contribution from the services sector. In comparison, the US economy was worth almost $17 trillion in 2013.

     
  12.  
    06:14: IAG bid for Aer Lingus Radio 5 live
    Dublin Airport

    British Airways owner, IAG is "good at integrating new airlines" says Richard Hunter, head of equities at Hargreaves Lansdown. He is explaining why IAG made a bid for Aer Lingus. The Irish airline is attractive because it has lots of landing slots at Heathrow, says Mr Hunter. IAG may also have a bit more spending power because of the lower oil price, he adds.

     
  13.  
    06:06: North Sea oil jobs Radio 5 live
    Oil worker

    North Sea oil companies are cutting wages, rather than jobs at the moment, says Alan Savage chairman of recruitment company Orion Group on Radio 5 live. For agency workers wages have already been cut by up to 20%. He says that the British oil industry is highly taxed and the "government has a lot to answer for".

     
  14.  
    06:02: Russian crisis Radio 5 live
    Russian President, Vladimir Putin

    Next year is going to be grim for the Russian economy, says Craig Botham, emerging markets economist at Schroders on Radio 5 live. The economy is likely to contract 4.5%, inflation is forecast to be betweem 11% and 12%. The rouble could keep on weakening, "it's hard to see a particular floor for the currency" Mr Botham says.

     
  15.  
    05:59: Ben Morris Business Reporter

    Do get in touch. Email bizlivepage@bbc.co.uk or tweet @bbcbusiness.

     
  16.  
    05:59: Matthew West Business Reporter

    Morning folks. The news the US Federal Reserve is in no hurry to raise interest rates boosted shares on Wall Street and in Asia to new highs. Meanwhile the Bank of Japan maintained its commitment to government bond buying at its last meeting of the year. And we'll be keeping an eye on the Russia rouble and oil price again today and there may be more on IAG's bid for Aer Lingus. Stay with us.

     

Features

From BBC Capital

Programmes

  • An ECG (electrocardiogram)Click Watch

    The wearable technology which could allow you to pay for goods with your heartbeat

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.