Writing your personal statement can be a tough task, especially the first time writing one. A personal statement is the first thing an employer will see on your CV, so this will be the moment whether they decide to carry on reading your CV or rejecting it. Here at SF we see hundreds of CV’s a day, which is why we understand the importance of a personal statement, and have come up with a list of do’s and don’t’s when it comes to it:
- Make sure you get straight to the point – you need to make sure your CV is not just informative but also concise, so try and not go on and on, keep it between 100 – 200 words.
- Make sure to answer the key questions – who you are? What you can bring to the business? And you career goal. Sticking to these guidelines can assure your personal statement has all it needs.
- Avoid clichés – the more personal you can make your CV the better it will be. It can be difficult to make your CV stand out from the crowd when you use attributes that they will see so many times a day, don’t be original.
- Use the job description – when employers are looking through a CV they want to see candidates that match what they are looking for. Make sure to use the job description as most of the time what they are looking for is in the job description, so try and use this as guideline when writing you personal statement and show that you fit the job description.
Other things to do: Use some of the following words or phrases – successfully, developed, proven, track-record, experienced, delivering results.
- Be too generic – I know this may take up more time when writing your statement but this can make your CV so much more effective and will make it time well spent in the long-run.
- Focus on yourself – the best personal statement should always include what skills you could bring to the company and what you can offer that no other candidate can, rather than focussing on the attributes you gave and where you want to go in your career.
- Confuse it with your cover letter – a personal statement is just a brief introduction, so make sure to keep this small and just a representation of your success. Use your cover letter and employment history to elaborate on your achievements and grab the readers’ attention.
- Think of it as a list – Don’t feel the need to list everything you have ever done or every attribute you have and don’t feel restricted to start every sentence with ‘I’. The recruiter knows who the CV is about.
- Forget to read it out loud – Make sure you read it over and over and get your friends and family to read it. And, most importantly, read it out loud and make sure it flows. Not only do you want it to impress the employer in terms of your achievements, you also want it to be well-written.