Has LinkedIn taken over from the CV…

2017 is fast approaching, so you may be thinking New Year, new career?

If you want to give your job search the edge, you need more than an up to date CV!  But is LinkedIn gaining ground over the traditional CV?

Where to start?

With 467 million members worldwide at the last count, LinkedIn is a great way to connect and be found, and many recruiters search LinkedIn to find relevant candidates.

The average CV is a record of achievement, so it’s very often a static, backward-looking document. Until you’re actively hunting for jobs, most people put a CV to one side and forget about it. A LinkedIn profile is different, it’s an active document that can be regularly revised as we add status updates, receive and provide recommendations and interact with others. There’s no restriction of what you can fit on a page –  and from that perspective, it’s much more than a CV alternative.

Get yourself noticed!

If you think of it in terms of recruiters and employers, LinkedIn is a great way to find candidates. LinkedIn is a huge database and by using relevant key words they can quickly find the people they need.  Include your own key words to support this, and pick out the highlights from each job that you want to share. On top of that, you can upload videos and documents to showcase your experience even further.

Used properly, LinkedIn can be a very effective way of raising and marketing your profile online. It’s less about a list of what you have done in the past and more focused on letting people know what you can do and how you can help.

That said, a CV is still a must as a career overview and introduction to employers, recruiters or your network, and then many may seek to find out more about you. But remember, it’s not always CV first, LinkedIn second. Quite often you can be found on LinkedIn first – for example by a headhunter – and your CV will be what they ask for if the reader likes what they see. It’s what they want to send to your next prospective employer, not a link to your LinkedIn.

So, the answer is that LinkedIn may be inching in front, but CVs are still very much in the running! HRRevolution recommend that your CV and LinkedIn are used as part of an integrated job seeking strategy, providing much more flexibility in the way you present yourself.

Get the right balance between your CV and your LinkedIn profile, and you may not have to refresh your CV for years. If you’re asking yourself ‘where do I start?’, contact the HRRevolution Team, or check out our website for how we can help. A small investment can give you all the tools you need to get you the interviews you want and the next step in your career!

Contact the team now: (0) 203 538 5311

Outsourced HRHR Documents | Talent Solutions

HR Revolution HR Documents

Visit HR Revolution’s document shop, for all your HR document needs 

 

Invited to an interview? 8 tips on what NOT to do!

Has anyone been watching “The job interview” on Channel 4? No… well if you are looking for a job, you should, it is a fantastic guide on what NOT to do in an interview!  Ok, I’m being a little unfair as there have been a couple of people who came across very genuine and likeable, even if a little out of practice at interviewing. There are some though, that seriously just need to a) get some manners and b) use a bit of common sense!

We have blogged before with interview tips and do’s and don’ts, but for those that missed it, here are our top tips on what not to do if you want to land your dream job.

  1. Don’t be late – We shouldn’t really need to tell you this as everyone knows this is probably one of the worst things you can do;  first impressions and all that.  So do whatever it takes to arrive in plenty of time, even if that means being ridiculously early and going and grabbing a coffee somewhere to prepare. That leads me on to the next point…
  1. Not being prepared! There really is no excuse for this, the internet is a wonderful thing and there is literally nothing you can’t find on it, company size, organisation charts, company turnover and most importantly a companies ethos. Remember they will ask you questions based on it, so do your homework.  And please, please, please, remember the name of who is interviewing you!  Sound silly, well in one episode of the above mentioned programme the interviewer asked “what’s my name” to which the interviewee replied “err, ooh I’m sure I know it, I’m not very good and retaining information”… Really!!!
  1. Don’t underestimate the power of body language – after all it is telling the interviewer a story of its very own! I bet your mum told you to sit up straight and not swing on your chair, and she was right! You need to look interested and engaged not lazy and uninterested. Enter with a smile, a firm (but not aggressive) handshake and maintain steady eye contact, and watch for how they are reacting to you, as they are giving off signals too.
  1. Don’t tell porkies! Of course you want to showcase yourself, but remember to do this based on the skills you have and not those you don’t. For example, don’t tell them you are fluent in French when really you scraped a C in your GCSE, how embarrassing would it be when they strike up a conversation and all you can manage is Oui Oui mon petit fleur! The chances are if you land the job you will be asked to demonstrate these wonderful skills and if they aren’t quite as true as you have said, well you’re going to look a bit silly aren’t you?!?!
  1. Don’t go on and on and on and … oh you get the picture. Keep your answers short and relevant and know the point you are trying to make, if you just ramble on for the sake of saying something, the interviewer will quickly switch off and you will forget what you were answering in the first place. Preparation before the interview will help you have some answers ready prepared, allowing you to speak clearly with confidence.
  1. Don’t be rude… Like I tell my kids, pay attention when someone is talking to you! Checking your watch or your phone constantly is just not acceptable behaviour. And just think about the way you are talking and how it is coming across; don’t interrupt and be argumentative if you don’t agree with something just listen and formulate your response appropriately.
  1. Don’t insult or criticise your current employer. It really is not professional to talk about how rubbish your boss is, what they do wrong or why you hate them so just don’t do it. If they ask you why you are looking to move jobs, talk about the positives of the new position or career progression, not about how you can’t wait to get out where you are “cos it does your head in!”.
  1. Not asking any questions – Please, whatever you do, don’t make “what is the salary and holiday allowance” the first one!  Interviews are as much for you to decide whether you want to work for that company, as it is for them to see if you are right for the role.  So again be prepared and have some well thought out questions ready; some examples might be asking what they are looking for in the new hire, or how do you see the company growing and how will this role contribute to that? They show that you are genuinely interested in being part of and contributing to a growing business.

Lastly I would say, be yourself, if you get the job surely you want to know that was partly down to them liking you as a person as well as your skills, try and be a bit more confident in the interview and show some of your winning personality.

And a parting note, make sure you follow up. I’m not suggesting you start becoming their stalker but an email to thank them for their time, reiterate that you are the right candidate for the job and you’re happy to answer any further questions… Just don’t come across too desperate.

We hope the above tips are helpful, so good luck and go nail that interview!

Why not download below our FREE guide “21 commonly asked interview questions” and be as prepared as you possibly can.

www.hrrevolution.co.uk | www.hrrevolutionshop.co.uk | www.hrrevonline.co.uk

HR Revolution HR Documents

Now lets get you a winning CV…

So you have decided that you are going to go out into the big wide world of work and you’ve got your online presence looking tickity boo (we hope you read our blog, Finished full time education, what next?) so what now? Well, as we’ve said competition is fierce, particularly among graduates and that first impressions are extremely important.  So now it’s time to concentrate on your CV, and you need to make sure it is looking great and really jumps out of the pile, for all the right reasons of course!

We see lots of CV’s here at HR Revolution, for all sorts of job positions, but whether you are going for intern position or the top spot of CEO all CV’s should follow some basic rules.

Here are our top 5 things which should play a part in your CV:

  1. How does your CV look?

It’s not just about the content; it’s about how you have presented it! You want it to look clean cut and professional. A CV that’s crowded with text doesn’t look attractive. These days, CV’s are initiated through email so make sure the format is easy to read on screen. No funky text formats, stick to Arial or Times New Roman. No funky, floral borders and keep your text a readable colour!

  1. Long profiles

Now we’re all about profiles, a paragraph giving the employer a taster to what your personality is like, your job role, what you are looking for next etc… But… people don’t need your life story! Keep it short and sweet, a paragraph is more than enough! Put as much personality in as you can (keeping it professional!); give the employer a view as to who you are and what would attract them to bringing you in for an interview.

  1. Grammar and spelling

This is a real bugbear; there is nothing worse than getting a CV through with mistake after mistake. The actual experience is good, but the spelling and grammar just puts you off… Double/triple check; get your friends/family to check that there are no spelling/grammatical errors in your CV!

  1. Irrelevant information

Potential employs don’t need to know how many children you have, your wife/husbands name, how much you weigh… you may also be proud you won the village pub quiz of the year… your potential employer may not be so engrossed! Keep the CV about your career history, educational background and personality.

  1. Unexplained employment gaps

Were you travelling? Looking for work? On maternity leave? Save yourself and give an explanation! It can be a real put off seeing unexplained gaps on your CV – it makes people nervous so be sure to outline the reasons why.

The important thing to remember, is what is your USP (unique selling point)? Why are you the best person for the job?  Now think about how to market yourself. If you’re looking to break into a very competitive market, what have you done that could support that…. Voluntary work, organising events for local groups, these additions will help you shine, just remember to keep it relevant, there should be a reason behind why you are telling them.

And there you have my guide to getting it right!

We hope our CV tips help you put together a winning document!  Why not get ahead of the game and download our FREE First Impressions guide so you’re fully prepared when that interview invitation drops in your inbox!

Psst… why not let us help you with your CV??  We’re giving 15% off our CV template pack, with code CVP15 so head over to our HR Revolution Shop now… Just Click HERE … no one needs to know you had help with your fab new CV!

www.hrrevolution.co.uk | www.hrrevolutionshop.co.uk | www.hrrevonline.co.uk

HR Revolution HR Documents

 

Finished full time education, now what…

So your time of learning has come to an end, whether that’s school, college or university you now have some big decisions to make.

Trying to work out what to do with your life can be a daunting prospect, but it doesn’t have to be.  There are a fantastic amount of choices available to young people now, so jump on board and don’t miss out on the many opportunities you have.

The thing to also remember is if you didn’t get the grades you wanted or go to university, there is still so much, for example did you know that to be an air traffic controller you don’t need a degree and that’s quite a cool job!

Apprenticeships are a brilliant way to get into the industry you want and better still, you get paid while you learn, which for many may be a much better alternative to an expensive university education to gain a qualification that you don’t use.

Then there are plans for ground-breaking reforms to technical and professional education (TPE), which will set England’s system on a par with the best in the world.  The reforms will focus on simplifying the currently over-complex system, working in direct partnership with employers to ensure the new system provides the skills most needed for the 21st-century economy. Vocational routes into work are no longer seen as second best.

http://www.notgoingtouni.co.uk is a great website for help and guidance on apprenticeships and other routes available if you are unsure which path to take.

Whatever you decide on, you will be up against some fierce competition, so you need to make sure you stand out from the crowd. Your online presence needs to be top notch, so take a look at all of your social media accounts and get them looking less “free, single and ready to mingle” and more “career path ready!”.

Remember LinkedIn, is the Facebook of the corporate world, so this should be your first port of call, as it will be for potential employers.  Your profile needs to be so much more than your name and schooling information, it needs to be “all star”.

www.hrrevolution.co.uk | www.hrrevolutionshop.co.uk | www.hrrevonline.co.uk

HR Revolution HR Documents

HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY…

To all our American friends, happy 4th of July.

 

www.hrrevolution.co.uk | www.hrrevolutionshop.co.uk | www.hrrevonline.co.uk

HR Revolution HR Documents

25 of the funniest CV excerpts… and they are real!!

Ok, so it’s not the first time we have blogged about CV’s and usually it is about what to and what not to do to make it stand out!  Well having stumbled across this article online, there are clearly many people who haven’t read them!!!

Below are 25 of the funniest faux pas’ that have appeared on “real” peoples CV’s, spelling mistakes the lot!  This is not a joke, these people are out there and they want to work with you!

HOBBIES – “Horse rideing, like going pub when haven’t got my kids.looking after kids and doing stuff with them when they anit at school.”

ACHIEVEMENTS – “Being sober”

ABOUT ME – “My favourite colour is Toupe, cos it rhymes with Dope”

REASON FOR LEAVING – “It was hard work”

PERSONAL PROFILE – “I be no stranger to double-entry. I loves numbers, and my wife and I loves journals and ledgers! Can also do tricky sums when I puts my mind to it. Computor litrate.”

PERSONAL PROFILE – “I do have convictions (drug offences) which are spent some 30 years ago for when I was 16-18 and have a caution for 4 years ago for criminal damage”

KEY SKILLS – “Perfectionist with a keen I for details.”

EMPLOYMENT HISTORY –  “Whilst working in this role, I had intercourse with a variety of people”

KEY SKILLS: “I would like to assure you that I am a hardly working person.”

HOBBIES –  “enjoy cooking Chinese and Italians”

JOB HISTORY – “Career break in 1999 to renovate my horse”

SKILLS – “Speak English and Spinach.”

SKILLS – “I have technical skills that will simply take your breath away.”

SKILLS – “I can type without looking at thekeyboard.”

JOB HISTORY – “Left last four jobs only because the managers were completely unreasonable”

SKILLS – “I am a rabid typist”

COVERING LETTER – “I am extremely loyal to my current employer….Feel free to ring my office if you are interested in my CV”

EDUCATION – “I am about to enrol on a Business and Finance Degree with the Open University. I feel that this qualification will prove detrimental to me for future success.”

HOBBIES: “donating blood – 12 litres so far.”

KEY ACHIEVEMENTS – “Oversight of entire department.”

KEY SKILLS – “I have extensive experience with foreign accents.”

QUALIFICATIONS – “Here are my qualifications for you to overlook.”

COVER LETTER – “Please disregard the attached CV; it’s totally outdated”

KEY SKILLS – “Am a perfectionist and rarely if if ever forget details.”

HOBBIES – “painting my toenails in varying colours”

Please, please do not be like these people.  If you need help to create a ‘stand-out’ CV, why not download our CV template pack and get noticed for the right reason!

 

 

Is it time to spring clean your work life?

Yesterday was officially the first day of Spring (hoo-rah!) and the beginning of spring-cleaning season, but it doesn’t just have to apply to your home life, it’s a great time to dust off your career too!

This particular season change seems to bring with it a sudden boost of energy, so here are a couple of tips to get you channeling it in the right direction…

Update your CV

Recruiters will spend anywhere between 6 to 10 seconds on a single CV, so make each one count! Having a powerful interview winning CV is essential when making the best first impression and ensure it doesn’t get filed…. in the bin!

Update your CV at least once a year, it will help you keep track of your accomplishments and successes before too much time has passed.  Fantastic sales figures you achieved, new qualifications gained or vital training undertaken are much harder to remember when 2-3 years has passed.

The length of a CV is far less important than the actual content itself;  3 pages of repetitive, great team player, works well on own initiative etc etc will not hold someones interest. Keep it relevant and stick to the facts they are going to really want to know about and remember, make yourself stand out from the crowd.

Update your LinkedIn Profile

More than 97% of recruiters use LinkedIn to find candidates, which is why it is now more important than ever to have an active, professional, “all star” profile.

Firstly, make sure your LinkedIn profile is as up to date as your CV as that is the first place they will look you up. This is your opportunity to really showcase your professionalism and uniqueness and really highlight keywords and phrasing relevant to your industry. Increasing your online presence and searchability is absolutely paramount, after all, you do want recruiters to be able to find you!

If you think you could do with a little help or guidance to make your profile the best it can be, download HR Revolution’s FREE guide to LinkedIn do’s and don’ts now. If you’re ready to go one step further, why not take a look at our Enhanced LinkedIn and professional CV writing package  or speak to one of our consultants today!

 

 

 

5 reasons your CV gets ‘filed’ (in the bin)!

This is not rocket science folks the fact is, it’s all pretty simple. Your CV is your passport to the future you want and as such it is so important to get it right. We’re giving you the 5 most common CV sins that we have come across so you know what NOT to do with yours!

They are in no particular order, as to be honest, they are all pretty bad…

Not proof reading or checking spelling, grammar etc.  

This is one of my biggest bug bears. When it comes to spelling and grammar there really is no excuse. Ok so we are not all gifted at being the best spellers, myself included and I am often told I can’t spell for toffee, which is fair enough, but it’s not a problem that can’t be fixed it just means that I ask for help! Technology is a wonderful thing and it hands us tools like spell check on a plate, or try an online grammar checker like ginger software, it reads out loud what you’ve written so you can hear any mistakes; genius! Failing that, why not ask a friend to proof read it for you, four eyes are better than two! The point is there are ways to make sure your CV is perfect before submitting it, in applying for your dream job or any job for that matter. In the 21st century there is no reason that any CV should be covered in spelling mistakes, have skewed format or grammatical errors. Despite how a person speaks or whether they use a PC or a Mac there is an expected level of acceptance and if your CV falls short you know where your CV will be filed.

Inappropriate email address.

‘smackmybi*chup@me.com‘, ‘lusciouslouise@hothot.com‘ or allnight@long.com. Do I need to  say anything more? First impressions count and more than that, they can stick. When looking through CVs I am always so surprised to see so many inappropriate email addresses. I know what you’re thinking, “get a grip, it’s just an email address!” Right? Wrong! Yes, it might just be an email address, but your CV is a snapshot of you and a potentially offensive email address won’t do you any favours. Your CV is a precursor to you, the real person and what a poorly chosen email address says to the “professional” world is, I don’t care enough to make an effort. Which I imagine is not the impression that you want to make. After all, they are free and take 2 minutes to set up – now who needs to get a grip?!

There is nothing more frustrasting that Waffle and Repetition, not to mention its boring!!

It is all too common to see CVs that are complied of 40% useful information and 60% cut and paste from other areas of their CV. I appreciate that some roles can be very similar, but it’s not the employers job to have to sift through the sea of “articulate, team-player but can also work on own initiative. Meticulous, hardworking, excellent communication skills…” to find some real personality. Please don’t get me wrong these skills and values are important, but if your CV simply reels off a list, chances are an employer is not going to dig any deeper to find out who you really are. With regards to repetition and cutting and pasting areas of your CV, my advice, just don’t do it. Talk about transferable skills from role to role and better to keep it  short and to the point rather than waffle on and on and on and on…

OTT (other peoples property)/Plagarism is 100% a no no. Please note this is different from using a template to help construct your CV, what I am talking about is lifting huge chunks of copy from someone else’s CV. There are a few problems with this one, but one I have come across is that someone actually applied for a job with her sister’s CV! I know I didn’t get it either. However, this is one of the pitfalls of having everything online. Just because it may appear to have the same job title doesn’t automatically mean that the tasks were the same, and this coupled with sin #1 is a recipe for disaster.

And that leads us nicely to our final CV sin. Telling porky pies, aka Lies.

A word to the wise. We have discussed that your CV is your passport and should be a paper version of you; bursting with personality, but leaving a good impression with the reader. Fabricating the truth in your CV is not going to help you achieve that. Now I’ll be real with you and I’ll close by telling you a story of how much hot water lying on your CV can get you into. A friend of a friend of a friend used to know a guy who’s CV was a complete work of fiction, however, this man was great with people and very charismatic. He wasn’t a complete fool, he would do his research into the role and company that he wanted to join, but would apply for roles that he was completely unqualified for.  Head of departments and senior management in large, very well known firms were the types of jobs he would go for and you know what, he got the jobs. His thought process was that he would take the six figure salary for a few months, then leave before he was found out. What a great idea you’re thinking? Not so much when one of the firms does some proper checks and  that same firm has a team of very expensive and experienced lawyers backing them and wanting to sue you for fraud. The moral of the story, the truth has a way of coming out and even if it’s not as extreme as this example, I should think that the humiliation of being found out and exposed as a liar should be enough to deter you from telling a porkie or two. Don’t risk it!

Something else to be mindful of is that potential employers will look you up everywhere. They have your CV in their hand and now it’s time to see if you are who you say and they do that by going online. LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter are just some of the places your name will throw up in a google search, so make sure you are looking good everywhere.

If you’re struggling to put together the perfect CV, don’t panic head over to the career development section of our web HERE and see where we can help. Or let us do it for you by downloading your CV pack today! And to make sure you’re covered, we’ve included our guide to LinkedIn Do’s and Don’ts, it’s Free to download so what are you waiting for…

 

 

 

 

 

Happy New Year, have you made your Resolution?

Well here we are again, the start of another year and after a month of complete indulgence, it’s time to set out our Resolutions for 2016.

Yes whether you pledge to ban the booze, sack the cigarettes or join a gym we are all making promises that we hope will make us better people or improve our life, well for 2016 at least. Businesses are also cashing in on this “promise” and everywhere you look there is another advert with the strap line “New Year, New You”… one in particular sticks in my mind for a protein shake being drunk by 5 gym-wear clad super models which, adversely, is enough to make me reach for the left over quality street! But anyway it all sounds great doesn’t it. Of course it does, but in reality in 3 weeks time at least 35% of us will have already fallen of the Resolution Wagon! And why?? well perhaps we are just not that realistic; we all vow to give up things we think we should rather than what we want to, and forget to promise to do something that will really improve our life that might actually be achievable.

Number 3 in the top 10 Resolutions made for this year, was to get a better work life balance, and I think this is the best one; after all you need to get this one right or giving up things that you enjoy are much harder when your stressed, and you have no hope of hitting the gym if you’re always at work!

So without sounding like another cheesy sales pitch why not embrace the New Year, New You philosophy and put your efforts into this one thing? It really is a fantastic time to be one of the movers and shakers of the employment world. You have the motivation you need to start the life changing search and businesses are looking for the Next Big Thing to make all their 2016 goals come true!

Check out the Career Development Section on our website and put into use the tools we have to offer now, and be in the small percentage that really do make a success of their new year resolution! (psst, we’ve given you some freebies to get you going!)

http://www.hrrevolutionshop.co.uk

Happy New Year the HR Rev Blogger!

 

What I Wish I Was taught at School…..

 

It’s World Teachers Day 2015 today! Now whether you loved or hated school, or now as adults whether you think teachers have it easy or not, we should remember they do look after our little darlings for more than 6 hours a day, and take it from a mum who barely survived the summer holidays doing exactly that, I applaud them!

But it has made me think about what I learnt at school, I mean have I ever actually put Pythagoras theorem to the test, err no but I do like to think that my grammar is good, I can work out what discount I’m getting when the sales are on (invaluable!!) and I can get by when ordering a coffee with sugar when I ever pop to the continent so all in all I did ok.

But there are so many times I have said “well they don’t teach you that in school do they!” I mean there are things in life that I could have really done with being taught about! Like….

DIY – The Truth!
I’m not talking anything crazy just a few basics….
When I was at school we did wood work and DT (design technology) which basically involved making a keyring out of melted plastic or a junk model of the Eiffel Tower using odds and ends of wood, NOT something I’ve had much call for since!! No what I would have liked is for them to have taught us the truth behind flat pack! How to really read ‘picture only’ instructions where slots A and B are always the other way round, that there will ALWAYS be one extra screw left over to make you feel like you have done it all wrong and will collapse if you put the slightest pressure on it AND that no matter what they say it is NEVER a one man job (unless you have three arms!)

We should have had “A Useful Tips Lesson!”
If they just gave you one a week that would be over 500 useful little nuggets you’d leave school with! Covering the basics like …

Drinking on a ‘school night’ really IS a bad idea, you may feel fine the next morning but there is an enormous wall that will hurl itself at you around 11am which will leave you feeling that you will never possibly survive the next 6 and half hours without a duvet, Panadol extra and perhaps a power nap!

If you spend all of your wages in the first week, you will not have any money for the next three weeks!

Never allow your picture to be taken when you look your most stupid by someone with a smart phone!

Don’t give yourself the email address bigboobbrenda@loveme.com it goes on application forms you know!

How to come up with instant excuses without looking like you’re lying – I know that’s a bit mean, but helpful right!?!

Google is NOT the place to go for medical advice

What are all those symbols on a washing machine?!?! Can I not just stick it in and press on!

How to live with someone, and cope when they just won’t put their plate in the dishwasher, their dirty clothes in the basket and the toilet seat down… And breathe!

Know when, even though you are 100% right, just to keep it to yourself!

And Small talk, I mean how do you do it?!?! Is there a list of generic questions that some people get given that they just reel off? It’s just so hard and I always just seem to be saying “so…” and that’s it…. Awkward!!

Anyway that is probably enough from me, and you get the picture… But if there are any teachers out there reading this, I don’t suppose you can slip these little tips into the national curriculum, you would be helping generations from future hardship. Just a little Life Skills class here and there would do wonders!

Is there anything you wish you had been taught but hadn’t?? My colleague said “how to make a million before you’re 30! 🙂

Whilst looking on the web around this topic, I found a lot of students that have just left school are all saying the same thing that they wish they had more help with how to look for a job, write a CV and have an interview, which is something we can help with, so get in touch if that’s you!

Teachers We Salute you!
The HRREV Blogger