CV do’s and don’ts

By Mira Majzoub


You are going on a job hunt and you’re sending your CV to multiple employers? Or you are applying to a university program and not sure how to introduce yourself?

Sending your CV to human resources and admissions is the easiest way to showcase your experience and skills. There’s a list of do’s and don’ts you need to be aware of before submitting your resume to your potential future employers or school.


Don’t: Send an empty email with just a CV attached. Even if you send the email with the job position as a title, the recruiter does not know how you received the job ad or why you want to apply.

Do: Include a brief text explaining your relevant experience or interest in applying to the position along with the CV attached. This way recruiters can understand your intention in applying to the position and if they should consider you for it.


Don’t: Send your CV with a random title to the file. “CV new 2” is not the perfect title for the document you are sending.

Do: Name the document with your full name and the word “Resume” or “CV” next to it.


Don’t: Attach your resume as a word document Recruiters won’t be able to alter your CV for clients. They also can’t access any links or emails you may include.

Do: Attach your resume in a PDF best for electronic distribution and accessibility.


Don’t: Include a photograph of yourself on your CV. The majority of the jobs are based on your competence and not how you look.


Don’t: Include your religion, birth date, marital status, or any other personal information that would not be necessary or relevant for the position or course you are looking to apply to.

Do: Include your contact information, professional social media platforms, and your visa status (if applicable).


Don’t: Include a cover letter explaining why you are a good candidate addressing the recruiter or admissions team in your CV.

Do: Talk about your candidature in your Cover Letter adding relevant details that might not appear in your CV.


Don’t: Make the margins wider and font smaller to make all your information fit.

Do: Maintain an easy-to-read CV. Only include the information that is relevant to your professional experience and work development. More than a 2-page is fine as long as the information is relevant to the position you are applying to.


Don’t: Use the first person of view when talking about yourself or a certain position you had.

Do: Speak in the past tense for positions you have had in the past and keep the present tense for your current position.


Don’t: Describe your previous experiences with long paragraphs.

Do: Use bullet points to state the main tasks and achievements you have accomplished.


Don’t: Pad your CV with all of the research, publications, and extended information.

Do: Include the name of the research or project with a summary.


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