What makes a “good”​ CV and are they as important as they once were?

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Firstly, this will be in no way factual & solely based on my opinion and it should be taken as such. I will also be delving into hospitality CV’s as I don’t have experience in other industries but I would imagine it would be along the same-line. Lastly feel free to leave your thoughts so that we can all work together and improve!

So CV’s are a funny thing, they are fantastic tool to use to gauge an individual’s experiences, achievements and qualifications over the course of their Career, but they are very black and white (no pun intended) and don’t show an individual’s personality. I have broken it up into individual sections so that it is easier to digest.

First and foremost, you do not have to state that it is your CV. Having CV or Curriculum Vitae is not necessary, we know what it is (usually by the file name) or by the cover letter.

Name, address, email, age, telephone number:-

Name – The name should be professional, so no nick names!

Address – Don’t feel as though you need to put your full address the town and post code are enough so that we can gauge your location

Email – I still see email addresses that were set up when they were younger. Again keep it professional set up a Gmail or Hotmail account using your name (if it is taken then use numbers but keep it short, no 123456789) for example my email is as follows Samuelpollard60@gmail.com.

Age – Not necessary, do not feel as though you need to include it.

Contact number – Only use the contact number that you want to be contacted on. I have had experience with candidates in the past where a have asked were i have got this number from…because that is the one on your CV!! Also if you have a personalised voice mail please don’t have it with you screaming down the phone….although it may be funny employers may not see it like that.

Social Media link – LinkedIn is perfect on a CV (if it is up to date) as it will reflect on your professionalism, Facebook and Twitter not so much unless you want potential employees to see your leisure activities whereas LinkedIn is a useful tool.

Picture – Personally I don’t mind seeing a picture on a CV but some people are dead set against it for one reason or the another, my advice would be if you are including a picture make it so that it is small and non-invasive.

Driving Status – So important especially in more rural areas.

Personal summary of your experience

This should be short, to the point and should avoid statements like “hard working”, “works as part of a team and on my own”, “motivated” or “Reliable”, everyone uses these and I tend to just skim over them. What I like to see is HOW you are driven, WHAT you enjoy about the industry and WHERE you see yourself heading. GIVE ME SOME PERSONALITY!!

The next thing I love to see is a short 3 or 4 BULLET POINTED list of achievements that YOU are proud of. You are the only one that can sell yourself so please do!!

Now we come onto the main bulk of the CV….your work history and experiences. This is vital to every CV and the hints and tips I are:

  • Keep it short and to the point (as with the rest of the CV)
  • Include a link of the property to your current and previous roles so that research can be made easy for employers.
  • Include the dates that you worked from and to, not just the year but the month as well.
  • Bullet point your responsibilities so that they are easy to read and don’t forget to add in targets you work to, budgets and any extra responsibilities.
  • Have your most recent position at the top and work backwards from there (this avoids confusion).
  • Make the job titles, properties name and dates bold for visibility.
  • DO NOT COPY AND PASTE THE JOB DESCRIPTIONS!! I can’t stress that enough, it is lazy, off-putting and doesn’t give accurate information for the specific roles. Remember that each role is unique and offers different challenges.
  • Don’t feel as though you need to justify work gaps a good recruiter will ask you about them.

Keep it the past 10 years experience, anything after that use basic information.

Education and Qualifications

In my eyes this section should be basic (unless you have a skill that corresponds to the particular role at which point why isn’t it in your achievements?), like the work experience section put down the dates to and from, what you studied, where you studied and again keep it relevant to the role you are applying for.

Hobbies & references

With hobbies please be careful what ones you are listing, things like Eating & drinking, spending time with friends don’t say anything about you. Again put something that shows your personality, flair and even a bit quirky (myself for instance, I collect comic books), as long as it shows character I want to see it.

With references don’t feel like you have to list them as most employers will ask for them anyway, a simple “on request” works fine.


Keep the font to basic standards: Times New, Arial & Calibri all are fine. The last thing you will want is for it to be hard to read and don’t forget the spell check and grammar check (i am one to talk as i always miss this!!). Also keep it well formatted by keeping all sections the same font, size (size 11) and page position.

So are CV’s still relevant in this day and age? of course they are but nothing can beat a phone call before you send it to a potential employer. It’s all about personality and how you would fit into a role not just the experience you can bring.

Well that is it really, if you have any thoughts on what you feel make a good CV please feel free to comment and spread the word! A massive thank you to the Jubilee Hospitality team who have contributed to this article in true team spirit!