Online dating is all about appearance and it’s the same in recruitment…

Would your CV get the hiring manager to swipe right or is it a big “X”?

I just cannot believe it! The first email I opened this morning is an application with typos in the CV and two errors in their brief introduction email. Really? And you expect me to believe one of your core skills is “Finely honed attention to detail”?

It’s such a shame as these are glaringly obvious CV mistakes (after all, wouldn’t spell check have highlighted the typos?) and shouldn’t your own “finely honed” skills picked up that you put the wrong company name in your cover letter email?

I can’t help but feel disappointed and if we were putting them in piles, sadly, it’s most likely to go in the “Nah” pile, rather than the “oh, my god I’ve got to call them now” pile.

It’s this one snapshot reaction which is so hard to claw back from.

It’s crazy. If you want a date, you make some effort. You complete a great profile and find a superb photo. Not too professional but not too saucy. It’s the same with a CV. Take some time, have some pride and make some effort.

You might be good at your job but you have to show us proof of this in your CV. Before you get to dazzle in an interview, the only things we’ve got to judge you on are your CV and intro email or cover letter.

This is why it’s so important.

Poor presentation, typos, grammatical errors, poor choice of format – there are so many elements for you to consider. A lot of these decisions will almost be decided for you by your profession.

So, for our digital marketing professionals, you’re lucky. Our industry is pretty forgiving on format or style. Just as long as it reads well, hasn’t got typos and introduces you accurately to any potential decision maker- you’re in!

BUT if it’s full of typos, has mistakes and generally looks a mess, I’m afraid the likelihood is you’ll receive the “thank you but unfortunately…” response.

There are so many guides out there to help you. But, everyone else can only do so much. As a job seeker, it’s got to be you who drives this. We’ve used our recruitment experience and shared job seeking tips on:

The rest has to be up to you and it starts with your applications. You need a good-looking, professional CV which really represents you at your best. You need to find out where you’re sending it to. Either direct to employers OR to specialist recruiters (like clockworkTalent) who have access to the decision makers of those employers.

It’s such a shame that I may not find out how good you actually are because I judged your CV harshly. But this is life. You have competition and I can only make my decisions based on what you present me with.

Without getting my call, you’re not getting an opportunity to make your case, show me your skills, eloquently present your case studies and demonstrate your potential in that first call or meeting. You may be absolutely amazing in person but if your application isn’t any good, we’ll never get to see this side of you.

All I will know is: this CV is from someone who couldn’t be bothered to take the time to proofread, make revisions or adapt their application for different roles. Ultimately that you were prepared to send your CV out in that state. Where was the care, the pride and the ownership? I can’t, in good conscience, overlook this and believe you’ll be great in the job I’m hiring.

But fear not! Help is out there for you.

Experts like ourselves, offer to share our knowledge to help you make the most of your professional experience and show it off for your job application. There is no excuse for a shoddy CV nowadays other than laziness, haste or a lack of care and attention.

One recent successful job seeker clearly felt that that securing his new job was directly down to our support and time we took to critique his CV. What makes it even more interesting is that clockworkTalent didn’t actually make the introduction for the job! Have a read why he thought his new CV made all the difference in giving him the end result of a job he really loves.

I’m not saying everyone has a bad CV or that everyone needs our help. I only write this because I see too many poorly written applications to think it’s a one-off. Job seekers need to understand if are looking for a new job, take the time to show us how amazing you are, right from the very beginning.

It starts with that first interaction. Your application, phone call or email! And you only get one chance to make a great first impression!

If you’re in digital marketing seeking a new employment relationship, irrespective of whether you’re in client services, sales, SEO, paid media, social, content, analytics or anything in between – get in touch with Natasha via or 0203 751 4108. You can also find us on social media including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn & Google+