How to get your CV noticed: Our top 5 ‘secrets’

13 Aug 2018

As busy recruiters, there are certain things that we look out for in CV’s we receive – here we share our top 5 CV secrets that can help yours stand out from the crowd.

  • Secret 1: Straight-forward language and bullet points. Nothing is more off-putting than having to search for important information. As communicators, we expect your CV to project the vital statistics in an up front and easy-to read manner tailored for your target audience (i.e. us, the client, and the job you’re applying for). Leave flowery language and purple prose for the novelists.
  • Secret 2: Covering emails really help determine whether you make that all important shortlist, so it’s worth spending a little time crafting them to their best potential. The best applications flag how you meet the requirements of a job advertisement in succinct fashion and in a professional, not too familiar tone.
  • Secret 3: Stand-out CV’s highlight measurable achievements , actively demonstrating the value you have added to their current and previous employers. Rather than just saying ‘I worked on x campaign’, spell out how this campaign reached targets: ‘I worked on x campaign, which received coverage in x number of publications and increased sales by x amount, for example. New business wins and media contacts are also helpful. We’re more interested in career history than education and personal interests, so ensure the CV is weighted accordingly, with career history (most recent role first) following contact information.
  • Secret 4: Make the job title and company you work for stand out. If you’ve highlighted ‘account manager’ at one of the major consultancies, for example, we’ll prioritise them because the job title automatically conveys likely responsibilities.
  • Secret 5: Sharing what we DON’T want in a CV / cover letter approach is as helpful as what we do. If yours includes: photos, quotes, a lengthy hobby list, a CV longer than 2 pages or a link to an online CV rather than a hard copy (we can see where you’re going with this, but we’d much prefer simple), edit them.

The Works Search specialises in finding industry best talent at board and senior level in corporate communications and financial communications. As executive search consultants we enjoy nothing more than discovering hidden ‘high calibre’ gems and sharing our expert career advice.

For career advice, please call Sarah Leembruggen on 0207 903 9290 or email

Salary Survey 2018 - 2019