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Writing a CV

The point of writing a CV is to secure an interview, nothing more and nothing less.

  • A CV is a press advertisement - you have seconds to engage the reader and to impress them and to engage them.
  • For every new position change your CV so that it is targeted at the job that is being filled and not a document that fits all positions.
  • On average the person reading your CV will spend no more than 40 seconds scanning it therefore it needs to be short - no more than 1 or maximum two pages.
  • You only have one chance to make an impression so the moment your CV is with your potential employer you are being judged.
  • Layout should be clear and simple on A4 paper — refer to CV samples


Listed below are key points:

1. Personal statement
Start with a personal statement — the purpose is to capture the attention of your reader and entice them to find out more about you. So take your main skill and relate it the job you are applying for to show them why you meet their needs.

2. Education
Start with education in reverse chronological order (the latest first), give brief details of your academic and professional qualifications along with the grades you achieved. So if you have a Phd this would come first - then a MA and then a BA.

3. Work experience
List your most recent position first, continuing in reverse chronological order including the name, location and dates of your employment for each company you have worked for. Use bullet points to highlight your responsibilities and achievements in each role so the person scanning your CV can quickly match up your experience with their job description. Do not describe the job but focus on what difference you made personally. For a good layout — please look at our sample CVs on the website.

4. Skills
Russian CVs tend to include a huge range of skills including all sorts of IT software that the candidate knows. However you need to think in terms of the reader and not yourself so only include relevant IT packages to the position that you are looking to fill. Foreign language skills are often crucial to our clients so please include any TOEFL scores or other benchmarks that are internationally recognised. Skills such as communication and project management are harder to substantiate and should be backed up with examples.

5. Hobbies and interests
Interviewers like to understand what other interests you have outside of work. They would be interested in candidates that participate in team activities and those with a high level of achievement — such as music, coaching sport and learning — to state a few examples.


I would highly recommend RTG to anyone as I found them to be a very professionally run organisation.
Lead Planning Engineer for BP Iraq

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