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Writing A Good CV As A Fresh Graduate In Nigeria
Now,if you have been following my website closely, you will have notice that i wrote a sizzling post on how to get your dream job in Nigeria. But today we will be sharing a few more tips on another topic. You’ve finished University, it’s time to enter the real world and find a job, for this you need a great CV, one that can show how passionate you are, what a great work ethic you have and how dedicated an employee you will be but you don’t know how to draft one.
How to write CV in Nigeria: The first step is understanding what a CV is and what it requires.
What is a CV ?
A Curriculum Vitae (CV) is Latin for Course of life, it is a written overview of a person’s experience and other qualifications for a job opportunity, it provides a summary of one’s experience and skills as well as one’s educational qualification and achievements as it real area to the job. It is an essential party of any job search not to mention, a great way to put all of your skills, experience and qualifications in one place. In fact, a well written CV could be the difference between getting an interview and not being considered for the role.
How to write CV in Nigeria: Why should you write a good CV and what are the benefits?
First things first, Cvs are read by real recruiters and not computers and Robots (as has been the myth), Writing a good Cv is very important as your Cv is the very first impression your potential employer would have of you and as you know a good first impression is very important and cannot be undermined, if your Cv is quite convincing it might just score you an interview with your favourite organisation and so you have to get it right!
A top quality Cv will considerably boost your chance of getting a face – to -face interview, so it is worth spending time and effort on content and presentation.
Your aim is to impress whoever your Cv will be sent to, Cvs are an integral part of the hiring process not to mention a great way to sell yourself as the employer will be receiving tons of applications daily, so instead of filling it with keywords and meaningless phrases make sure it’s actually readable and tailored to the role you are applying for. Also, make sure your skills are backed up with real examples, that way you are far more likely to hold an employer’s attention . For instance, If you are good at multitasking and meeting deadlines state or mention instances when you had to employ these skills , That way you are far more likely to hold an employer’s attention and sound convincing, After all, they hear clichés and buzzwords every day, so even if you are a perfectionist with great multi tasking skills, you have to personalise your Cv to make it different from the rest.
Bright and Earl in their book Brillant Cv used the analogy of a first date to emphasise a good first impression:
‘Remember the first date or the first time you went out with your partner ? Did you make sure your clothes were right, your hair right, or you were wearing the right perfume or after shave ?
Well, at least that much effort should go into getting your Cv right! Cvs are ‘first dates’ in the selection process that should land you in a new career path.
Like the first date, they are the first time an employer gets to form an opinion about you- the first opinion can make all the difference. The Cv is your opportunity to present yourself at your best. Cvs are important’
How to write CV in Nigeria: Tips on how to write a good Cv
Since the completion is rife in the job market, A fresh graduate in Nigeria is expected to follow these tips in order to draft a convincing Cv, One thing you should note is that there is no ‘best way’ to write a CV, you can be creative but there are certain things to take not of.
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1.Read the job description:
The job description shows you what the employer is looking for. Look for the key skills and think about how your own past experience relates to the job. This will help you tailor your CV to the position.
You’ll also spot key words and get used to the language the employer is using. Use the same language when you create a CV, so it’s easier for the person reading it to see how you match up.
Think about how you’ll order your CV
When you write a CV, you can lay it out in different ways, depending on what you want to show the employer. Put the most important information for this particular job is at the top. Have they asked for a qualification? Do they want work experience in something? Or are specific skills important to them? The job description will help you decide what to prioritise.
2.Try to stand Out:
As mentioned earlier, employees receive quite a number of applications daily and in order to catch his/her attention you need to stand out by making your CV different from others you have to be creative in articulating your skills, do not just list out the conventional skills required for getting a job in Nigeria (computer literacy, good communication skills, multi tasking etc) but try to link it to jobs you have had in the past and how you effectively wielded them to achieve this you have to Personalize your Cv.
As Martin Yate, a best selling careers author stated in his book The Ultimate CV Book(2003, pg 3) ‘Your Cv must speak loudly and clearly of your value as a potential employee and the value must be spoken in a few brief seconds, because in the business world, that’s all the attention a CV will get, The Cv takes you only the first few paces toward that new job, It gets your foot in the door and because you can’t be there to answer questions , it has to stand on its own’
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3.Simplicity : Yes, Simplicity! surprised ? Don’t be. As the saying goes, ‘simplicity is the ultimate sophistication’ In as much as you want to impress your potential employer you have to keep it simple, Your template should not be too loud as that would distract the employer. Also, Do not try to out smart the employer by using big words , Be articulate, not Note: Your choice of font and layout are key to making sure your employer carries on reading your Cv
4.Review: Check and check again and again, You should be wary of wrong spellings as that sets off a bad impression ( If you cannot get it right with your CV how will you when you eventually get the job?) Also, check for dates which conflict, incorrect emails and phone numbers
5.Use a Template: It makes your work easier and more interesting to read
6. Update: You regularly have to update your CV To make sure it meets the requirement of any jobs advertised.
Still on How To Write CV in Nigeria
What Information should be included in a CV ?
Usually, a cv should contain the following
1.Your personal details: Name, Address, phone number, email etc. It is best to put these information at the top so as to make it noticeable by the employer and also make the font bold and legible so that it can be easily seen, Ensure that your email and phone number are correct and put in mails that can be used to reach you easily.
2.Personal Statement: Your personal statement sometimes called a personal profile or career objective introduces you to an employer and shows a little of your personality, It enables the recruiter to quickly identify the strategic value you can add to the organisation for example:
A recent business economics graduate with a 2:1 honours degree from the University of X, looking to secure a Graduate Commercial Analyst position to use and further develop my analytical skills and knowledge in a practical and fast-paced environment. My career goal is to assume a role which allows me to take responsibility for the analysis and interpretation of commercial data for a well-respected and market-leading leading company.
You must state your educational qualifications starting from the present
Eg University of Lagos – Bsc Business Administration (2009-2013)
St Gregory’s college- Wassce (2003-2009)
Great Lakes Primary School – School leaving Certificate (1998-2003)
I have excellent communications skills and versed in 3 languages- French, Germany and Spanish
Graduated with a first class grade of 4.56 and won Best Graduating Student Award
4.Work Experience: Here, you state where you might have worked previously and your achievements
-Worked at Melbron Sales Services
-Won ‘Salesman of the Year’ award consecutively from September-December
Remember to link your job experience with what you are applying for, it will increase an employer’s preference for you.
5.References: Normally two references are required; one academic (from a lecturer or project supervisor and the other from an employer’s perhaps from your internship)
Frequently asked Questions on CV samples for fresh graduates in Nigeria.
- Question:- What should I write in my CV if I have no experience?
Answer:- If you have no experience on writing a CV, Then show your potentials, Most employers are not looking for what you have done, but for what you can do. Highlight your achievements and talk about your skills sensibly.
- Question: How do you get a job with no experience?
Answer: Identify your skills, Know your own worth, start volunteering to work for people, Balance your confidence with a beginners mind.
- Question: What should i include in A CV?
Answer: Contact details, Employment history, Education, Experience, Honesty, References, Styling, Languages you speak.
REMEMBER:-The lesser the pages of a CV, the greater attention it receives, an employer would not be bothered about a CV that looks like handouts a 2-page CV is excellent, therefore be direct clear and convincing.
What To Do Next:-
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- Drop your comments and experiences in the comment section.
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Written and compiled by Godwin, C.E.O incomenigeria.com, Click here to read my journey so far as an internet Entrepreneur.