The IT sector is always evolving, meaning that every day presents either new challenges or opportunities to businesses looking to stay ahead of the competition. So, it’s becoming increasingly vital for employers to hire the most talented specialist IT professionals around – including you. With this in mind, we break down the steps to ensure employers love your IT CV!
When applying for similar types of roles at different companies, you’ll often find that a one-size-fits-all type of CV doesn’t quite work. But this is even truer in the case of IT roles, which place a higher emphasis on technical rather than transferable skills. The nature of any given company, plus the demands of its respective sector and industry, influence the required and desirable breadth of skills and level of experience. So, no two IT roles are ever the same. Naturally, this calls for a greater need to submit individually tailored CVs for each role you apply to.
Study job descriptions – identify what roles expect of you, and select relevant information from your professional background that demonstrates how you’re a suitable candidate. And one last thing: don’t completely neglect your transferable soft skills (but more on this later)!
Structure and format
Typically, a two-page CV is the ideal length for an experienced professional within any sector. But the exception to the rule tends to apply to IT candidates. The longer your industry experience, the likelier you are to have had exposure to and involvement in various projects. Simply put, “being vague is a no-go,” says Kunal, one of our IT recruitment consultants. So, embrace technical detail to communicate the full extent of your expertise, and sell the vision of you as a capable and passionate candidate.
But, remember one thing: employers don’t want a mess of information overload, particularly when they’re looking at a considerable number of IT CVs during the often-busy application stage. The trick is to draw in the employer with an easy-to-follow structure. Think clean fonts, bold headings, and concise bullet points. And don’t underestimate the power of a personal profile, prior to your skills, experience, and education. Ultimately, each section should build on the previous one to sell the vision of you as the ideal IT candidate.
Perfect your personal profile
Grab the opportunity to appeal to employers, facing an ever-evolving industry, with a strong opening statement packed full of selling points. Provide relevant insight into your current role, years of sector industry experience, and qualifications. Highlight the best moments and achievements of your IT career to date.
And, if you’ve had the chance to work for big names in technology, don’t be afraid to say so. Why? Work experience with known competitors makes it easier for employers to acknowledge the calibre of candidate you are. Just as importantly, explain how all these aspects combine with your range of technical skills to put you in a greater position to help boost company growth in the long run.
Highlight your technical skills
An IT CV is unique from its counterparts in other sectors, as it’s pre-dominantly skills-based. So, use bullet points to summarise all of your technical skills – followed by one very important detail in parentheses: the years of experience you hold for each key one. This is a great move to ensure that employers are immediately aware of your know-how. Note: it’s also a good idea to explain what skills you’ve used on a day-to-day basis at each role; taking care to reveal specific detail about the extent of your responsibility and involvement.
Outline your experience
Delve into your work history. Edward, a KH People IT recruitment consultant, advises candidates to “start with the company name, followed by dates, job title, and bullet points explaining your achievements.” Plus, keep in mind that regardless of whether you’re a web developer, systems analyst, or software engineer, your role will require you to liaise with non-IT specialists such as coworkers and clients. So, it’s beneficial to stress the strength of communication and interpersonal skills.
Bonus tip: with technology always changing and adapting, employers will unsurprisingly be concerned to see any unexplained periods of time between jobs. So, address gaps in your IT CV ahead of a potential interview. Have an honest and reasonable justification to hand, or appease employers with insight into courses, seminars, and programmes of professional value that you’ve undertaken – especially those specifically relating to the line of work you’re after. Employers love to know that you’re proactive in strengthening your IT knowledge, as it serves in their best interests to attract specialist staff.
Our team of IT recruitment consultants is currently hiring for roles including a (Ruby) Backend Engineer, .NET Developer, and Senior Software Engineer. Or call Kingsley Hamilton People on 020 70780213 to talk about your career options.