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  A CV is usually the first thing that a potential employer will see, so it is important that it is well presented and makes an impression. A potential Employer, based on what he sees, may decide on whether to progress the application or not. Therefore, a well presented CV could be the difference between getting an interview or simply being rejected at the first hurdle. A CV says something about a candidate so it is important that the CV is both well written and organised.

CV's should be produced using a laser printer and older style methods should be avoided. Use normal fonts. Be brief and if possible use just one page or at most a page and a half.

There are several acceptable styles and CV formats. However, whichever format you decide on, make sure your CV is well structured and well presented. Below are some useful pointers and tips on how we think your CV should be organised

  Presentation and Structure  
  Make sure that the CV is grammatically correct so use a spell checker to review it. Check how it looks after you print it. The important information should come first and we suggest that the CV could be structured as follows:

Start off with the basic contact details, Name, Address, e-mail address and telephone contacts. Do not include personal details. Leave those to the end.

After the basic contact details, write a brief summary of overall experience. Highlight specific strengths, special areas of expertise, achievements and professional qualifications. This should be a high level summary detailing salient experience and qualifications. It should not be more than one paragraph in length. Example:

Reservoir Engineer with 10 years industry experience, gained in reservoir engineering and project planning with oil and gas E&P companies. Experience gained in a wide range of oil and gas fields, including field appraisals, development planning, reservoir simulation studies, EOR studies, well test design and interpretation, reserves estimation and production forecasting. Masters graduate in Petroleum Engineering. Familiar with software; Eclipse, VIP, PEEP, Pansystem, Saphir, Emeraude, Prosper and Forgas.

  After the summary, list jobs and start with the most recent. Your career should be listed in reverse chronological order. Place more emphasis on recent experience and recent jobs. For example, if 15 years ago you were a Derrick Hand and you are now a Drilling Supervisor, then you should have 4 or 5 lines for the Drilling Supervisor position and perhaps only 1 line describing the Derrick Hand. Never lie or exaggerate your experience. Use bullet points and avoid rambling. Keep it concise.

If you have many years experience, it may be easier and more appropriate, to consolidate earlier positions together. This is particularly applicable if you are working today in a much more senior role or you have had an extensive number of earlier job positions. Alternatively, if it is not very relevant, leave it off completely. You can always supply details later and it will help keep your CV to a manageable length. Examples

1978-1985 Derrick Hand
Working with a number of different E&P Companies……

1973-1978 Unrelated experience
Working in the Printing Industry as a………………

The last section of the CV should give a brief summary of personal details including education. Keep this section to a minimum and avoid unnecessary information such as hobbies, referees, NI numbers, School addresses etc.. If you have professional or higher education qualifications such as Degrees or Diplomas, do not include GCSE results. Such information can always be given later or during formal application. Example:

Personal details
DOB:  17/12/1963
Marital status:  Married, 2 Children
Nationality:  British
Higher Education:  HNC Mechanical Engineering with endorsements
Professional:  Chartered Engineer

Remember, that some Employers receive and view many CV's. They do not have the time or patience to go through many pages of a CV. They just need to see the salient points in an easy to read and organized structure. So be brief and concise.

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