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How to write a promising CV

2 weeks ago, I landed my first job as a front-end developer in the tech industry after a year of self-study.

When it came to writing my resume, I watched pretty much every video about writing a good resume on LinkedIn Learning, talked to professional IT recruiters, and looked at the resumes of people who successfully applied to Google, Facebook, and the like.

And these are the tips that overlap with all of these that I've stuck to and that landed me my first job as a front-end developer this year.

They taught me that a hiring manager only looks at a resume for 10 to 20 seconds before sorting it into a yes or no stack, an AI program takes even less.

So they shared some tips and helpful advice to avoid being set aside too soon, and here's what they all had in common.

Tips for a promising CV

Single-page

Start with the important information, because most likely the recruiter will not read your resume to the end.To keep the resume one-page, include only the information that is important for the job and leave out unnecessary parts as long as there are no big gaps in between.

Keep it simple

Simple design was the hardest for me, I admit I like it colorful and fancy. But unless you are applying to be a graphic designer, keep the resume as simple as possible.

You may think that a fancy resume is more memorable, but in reality, it's much harder to read because the recruiter has to flip back and forth to find the information they need.

Therefore, it's best to keep your resume black and white, avoid the usage of different font sizes (it's better if everything is the same size), and list your experience in one column rather than two or three.

It is important to leave no gaps (blank space) in your resume and use all the space available.

"Be boring in layout but creative and informative in content"

What to write when you have no experience

Now you may be thinking, what should I use to fill in gaps if I have nothing to add?

The answer is: add supplementary comments, write what exactly was done, and create at least three bullet points per experience.

You can list any experience you had: Volunteering, working on an open source project, a university project, an internship, and write what exactly was done and what languages and tools were used.

"Fake it 'till you make it"

Don't "really" fake it, of course. But list positive things, even if an internship wasn't that interesting or educational. It is allowed to embellish your experience a little bit or to prettify a boring experience.

Specify exactly which languages and tools you have used

It is important that you list all the languages and tools you have used for each project in detail. If the recruiter is looking for a Python developer and Python is nowhere to be found on your resume, your resume will fail.

For example, if you list projects at the university, write what languages, etc were used in them. This way, the recruiter can't miss that you know Python, for example, if it's more common.

What to write first

Always put important things at the beginning. Usually, you start your resume with information about your education. And that's perfectly fine if you have a CS degree. (Because that's something a recruiter would look for).

In my case, I started with my programming skills first because neither my education nor my previous jobs had anything to do with technology and I wanted to pique the recruiter's interest.

What else to include in a resume

  • Include your grades if you did well, or your overall average if you have not yet graduated.
  • You can also include the expected date of your graduation (University, a Nano degree program, etc.).
  • Perhaps write a new resume for all applications so you can highlight the languages that are currently required.
  • Personal interests can also be included in the resume.

And here is my CV

I created my resume with flowCV, but you can choose any tool you like best. (e.g. Canva, Google Docs, Microsoft Word, to name a few).

I'm showing only one page of my resume here, because the second one contains only one additional item, namely the work as an assistant, which is not relevant in this case but had to be included it to avoid a big gap of four years in my experience. As you know by now, you should limit yourself to one page if possible.

My resume was revised by a professional recruiter.

CV example

The great thing about flowCV is that you can easily link to your social media accounts by adding the URL link. So the PDF is clickable and automatically takes you to the correct URL. Also, the little icons next to my projects are clickable and open the URL to the GitHub code. A must for a resume these days.


Thank you

Thanks for your reading and time. I really appreciate it!

If you enjoy my content you can buy me a coffee 👇:
http://buymeacoffee.com/YuriDevAT 🥰

Discussion (1)

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michael_c_h_o profile image
Michael Cho

Good suggestions @yuridevat !

I think a lot of new grads or new to the industry developers struggle with getting their resume noticed. What do you think of the recommendations here - swepro.co/2021-04-07-passing-the-r... ?