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Making your first career change usually not as difficult as It may seem; You are also more likely to have a clear idea of what you want from your career and your next job and the work experience you have gained in your first job should equip you with the confidence to make a positive career move.
Tips on re-writing your CV/Resume as you begin your career change
- Aim high, but be realistic about what your next move should be.
Use the chronological format to produce the strongest CV if your career move is within the same field. Your education is still recent enough to be of critical interest to an employer, so begin with a brief account. It is important to assess exactly what you have learnt from your work experience and to emphasize your achievements – this is now the core of your CV.
Your career objectives will not appear on your CV, but it is worth spending time clarifying what they are.
- Always appear positive about your working experiences.
The emphasis of your CV has moved from your personal life achievements to your career achievements, although any relevant personal accomplishments still deserve a mention.
CHANGING JOBS MID-CAREER
With at least ten years’ experience behind you, your CV has become your most important career document. It must reflect all the commitment you have made to your career and the achievements that now make you marketable.
- Do not include reasons for leaving a job in your CV.
Unless you are considering a complete change of career, the chronological form of CV is definitely the preferred format. An accurate description of past and current responsibilities together with your record of achievements is critical – what you do now, and have done in the past, are the key elements of your document. Details of your education are less important – relevant education and qualifications should appear, but after your employment record.
Remember the “more relevant, more recent” rule. Summarize earlier employment, and give full details of your recent professional development.
- Make the most of all the professional and social contacts you have.
- Use the past tense in your CV, for example “managed” not “managing” – it will read better.
At this level a future employer wants proof of your effectiveness -– a certain amount of statistics help to make your CV appear more business-like.
A CHANGE OF DIRECTION
There was a time when a job was for life; this is no longer the case. You may change your career direction for any one of a number of reasons. Whatever the reason, you need to present your experience in a way that is attractive to those outside your sector.
- See a new start as an opportunity to make the most of skills you enjoy.
Too many people seeking a change of career direction will use a chronological CV format. This means that the potential employer must try and distill from a range of previous experience (which at first glance is not apparently relevant) the skills in which they may be interested. Much better that you use a functional CV format that highlights your skills and supports these with your employment history. It is therefore critical that you have audited your career and identified your core skills; be certain that those skills you are emphasizing will be attractive to an employer. If you have decided on a clear career objective, consider including it.
- Highlight different core skills, depending on the nature of your application.
Moving into a new field can be difficult, be clear in your own mind of your worth to a prospective employer.
- Make sure that you are seen to be making a career change for all the right reasons.
Emphasize your key skills – your actual career history can be dealt with quite briefly.
Ensure that your covering letter sounds positive about your previous work experiences and keen for new challenges.