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Many recruiters have stopped assessing candidates on their CVs

How necessary are curricula vitae for jobseekers?

Jobseekers will spend hours perfecting their CVs this coming January, as the New Year is a peak time for job searches with people seeking pastures new.


Studies have shown that the average recruiter looks at a CV for a mere seven seconds before deciding whether to put a candidate forward for a job, demonstrating that first impressions really do count.

With this in mind, an applicant has only seven seconds to grab the recruiters’ attention. This means ensuring a CV is not four pages long, instead, it is consise, to the point and showcases you at your best.


The big question is however, can you realistically fit your career onto two sides of paper? We regularly hear that this is what employers want – a CV that is no longer than two sides of A4. Ernst & Young certainly do not think so, having recently just announced it is no longer going to look at applicant’s academic records, thus becoming the latest large organisation to stop assessing candidates based on CVs. Even Oxford University, where less than one in five candidates is successful in gaining a place, has warned that applicants’ personal statements have vecome far too ‘X-Factor’. 

With new technology, online applications and social business networking websites such as LinkedIn, CVs are struggling to remain relevant in today’s ever-changing job market. So, with so many new recruitment tools at our disposal, is the CV in danger of extinction?

Many professionals may ultimately breath a sigh of relief at this news – seeing as the worry of pulling together a CV for so many is a headache and worry.

Taking into consideration that one in three jobseekers hampers their chances of landing work by making a spelling mistake in their CV (according to research – of those containing errors, 54pc have only one spelling mistake, but a careless 46pc contain two or more, research by jobs search engine Adzuna found) – this problem may soon to be no more…

Here, Steve Girdler for The Guardian highlights 3 prominent factors we need to be aware of and take into consideration with our CVs.

1. CVs aren’t always accurate

One of the main issues with traditional CVs is that it’s difficult for employers to get a sense of a candidate’s personality.

CVs are often unverified and can be exaggerated. Around a third of job seekers embellish qualifications to land a role.

2. Times are changing

LinkedIn addresses the issue of verifiability by allowing users to include references on their profile, backing up their claims. As a result some companies are allowing applicants to submit their LinkedIn profile in lieu of a CV.

But there is a legal aspect to consider with social media. While LinkedIn profiles can convey a better idea of the candidate’s personality and the type of work environment they are suited to, making a hiring decision based on someone’s social media accounts could lead to greater discrimination.

There are a number of new ways candidates now apply for jobs – such as video CVs, websites, and on Twitter. Online job applications are also popular. These involve online tests, which allow employers to test the candidates straight away.

3. The future is skills-based

The recruitment process has been transformed by technological advances over the last 10 years and this is only going to continue. While the CV is no longer the only way to apply for jobs, it is still usually necessary for the first stage of applicants. The majority of job websites request candidates upload a CV and cover letter as standard, and this seems unlikely to change anytime soon.

CVs are evolving to become a part of a broader and more rigorous recruitment process.

New technology is also allowing job candidates to display their skills in more creative and engaging ways – but this is usually in addition to a CV.


By employers like E&Y championing lateral thinking and initiative; it demonstrates that if you want to stand out: smiling, making eye contact and a keenness to learn provide a good footing for a successful career move. 

When on-paper skills start to count for nothing, you ought to be self-assured enough in your personal and professional ability to sell yourself in person via various formats.

Read the original article from The Guardian here: