is a CV Template?
This is a
question often posed by clients approaching us to create the best CV
possible. The main issue with professional CV templates is that by
definition they are a fixed method of constructing a CV. The
catastrophic effect of this is that a huge number of individuals will
end up owning and using very similar CVs, meaning that as a candidate
you will blend in with the crowd rather than stand out as an
individual, which obliterates the point of owning a bespoke CV.
Although there are tried and tested conventions that should be
adhered to in the majority of cases, CV writing is as much art as it
is science and in accordance with that fact a 'standardised' template
is certainly not advised.
What is an On-line CV Builder?
An on-line CV
builder is essentially the same as an on-line CV template in terms of
the final result, the difference being the mechanism for populating
it. Rather than downloading the template and filling in the
information yourself, you enter the information into an on-line form
and download the finished document with the data inserted and
formatted. Of course, no consultant will inspect the text you are
entering into your CV, so there is no sanity check or quality control
of any kind.
In our opinion,
there are no real tangible advantages of using a CV template or
auto-generated building tool - some may argue that a professional CV
template saves time and money, but thinking deeper reveals that this
is not the case. It can certainly save you time, but could
potentially cost you £1000's in terms of your potential salary as
you are not selling yourself with any originality or quality and
therefore will be unlikely to win a strong position in the highly
competitive job-seeking environment now being faced.
everybody has heard the often-quoted saying that “one size does not
fit all”, which is highly relevant when seeking to build the best
CV possible. No one individual is the same as anybody else, so the
ability to build a CV template to suit all individuals with uniquely
specialised needs and requirements can be deemed impossible. CV
builders and CV templates do not enable you to produce a bespoke
document, allow you to highlight personal achievements or input
information relevant to your specific interpersonal skills or career
A final thought
here is best illustrated from a CV Lizard anecdote (which has
occurred more than once to date). We have noticed suspicious looking
points on client CVs, most notably during our in-office appointments.
A quick Google search for certain key points has revealed
word-for-word matches. Imagine what an HR professional would think,
had they done the same. Originality is key.
should I do if I can't afford the services of a professional CV
Of course, we
always strongly recommend employing the services of a CV writer due
to the simple fact that for the sake of less than £50 (in most
cases) you will end up with a document that will essentially last
forever, give or take some additional editing and updating following
each new role. The return on investment there should really be
obvious – as this document acts as a key to the next stage in your
career, a stepping stone towards your personal goals and ultimately
(in most cases) an increase in wage, it pays to invest in
professional services in much the same way as it pays to employ any
professional and well-regarded trades-person!
If this initial outlay
seems expensive, we recommend you attempt the task yourself rather
than utilising any sort of automated tool. We have authored some
helpful guidelines on how to write a CV on this website which can be
found under the 'Help and Advice' tab. Some tip-of-the-iceburg
secrets are shared there, certainly not all of them though!