So far we’ve been through the first, second, and third parts of the CV or Resume writing process and its time for the fourth part which is the Professional or Work Experience. Now, it is important to state that depending on your career level, the Professional or Work Experience may not come immediately after the Skills or Core Competencies. Instead, the Educational Qualification should come first.
For example, if you are in the early years of your career or a fresh graduate out of school or the university, it is important to state your Educational qualification first before any work experience (which may consist of NYSC or Internship experience). This is because as a fresh graduate in the early years of your career, the employer/recruiter/Human Resource Manager may only be interested in the qualities or skills and educational qualification of the candidate more than the experience. This is more so if the position advertised is an entry level position. However, if the job vacancy has a work experience tag of 1-3 years, and you have at least 1 year experience either from volunteering, internship, or NYSC (National Service) then your Professional or Work Experience should precede the Educational Qualifications.
Rules for Writing the Professional or Work Experience on your CV
- The arrangement of your work experience or employment history must be from the most recent or any job you currently have. This is called Reverse Chronological Order
- Only include work experience for which you were paid and not volunteer experience or internship placement as this information should/will have a heading of its own. For example you could label your volunteer experiences as Volunteer Work Experience or simply Other Work Experiences
- Always put the firm which you work(ed) for first before the job title. This is one of the mistakes job seekers make when writing this section or part of the resume. They write boldly their Job Title before the company name. Usually, the company name comes first then the Job tile before the date (depending on the style you are using)
- ALWAYS INCLUDE a brief description of your Job duties or simply list out your responsibilities/achievement for every position included in the Work Experience section of your CV
- Employment period should be in Month/Year – Month/Year
- Do not include too much information
- In case of promotions in the same company or change of job position, include the latest position first before other positions and there is no need to repeat the company name on other positions. The job title and date alone will do.
- If available, include Achievements for every job position immediately after job description or list of responsibilities.
- Your job title should be in bolded form always as the employer wants to know ‘what you did’ more than ‘where you did it’
The Two Styles for Writing the Work Experience Section of the CV
There are basically two styles for writing out the Work Experience or Employment History on your CV. This is aimed at maximizing space since one would want to include relevant information as possible.
- The first style has to do with the Company name, Job Title and Date of Employment Writing in a list format as below
Acegoals Limited, Lagos Nigeria
Digital Content Marketing Specialist (June 2014 – Till Date)
- Research, write, and edit content pieces (blog posts, web pages, whitepapers, webinars, tutorials, videos, presentations, and more) that are aligned to The Brooks Group’s content strategy, are of remarkable quality, and are error free.
- Ensure the integrity of Acegoals Limited’s voice and tone by editing for grammar, usage, consistency, accuracy and style across digital channels (social media, email, blog, community, etc.).
- Work with freelance, guest, and internal content creators to make sure publishing deadlines are met.
- Optimize existing content for social shares, search engines, and lead generation.
- Track, measure, and report inbound marketing results.
NOTE: The list of responsibilities is in the present tense form because I am still on the job; I have not changed jobs. For other positions, it will be in the past tense. Also, most persons put the date after the company name. This should actually be after the job title because it should state how long you have been doing the job not how long you have been in the company. You can be in a company for 20 years but with different positions.
- The second styling that you can adopt is the format considered as space saving as you do not have to place the company name and job title in the vertical style but in the horizontal style as below.
Acegoals Limited, Lagos Nigeria Human Resource Officer (June 2011– August 2014)
- Worked closely with various departments, increasingly in a consultancy role, assisting line managers to understand and implement policies and procedures;
- Promoted equality and diversity as part of the culture of the organisation;
- Liaised with a wide range of people involved in policy areas such as staff performance and health and safety;
- Recruited staff – this included developing job descriptions and person specifications, preparing job adverts, checking application forms, shortlisting, interviewing and selecting candidates;
- Developed and implemented policies on issues like working conditions, performance management, equal opportunities, disciplinary procedures and absence management;
Developed sound training and personnel development packages that saw a leap in employee general performance and revenue increase in the first quarter of the firm’s financial year
Note: The list of responsibilities is in the past tense form because I have left the job. The achievement as earlier said is placed immediately after the responsibilities or job description
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