How to write a CV

How to write a CV

Curriculum vitae, resume, biography or just simple “CV” - an important document for every #freelancer that opens the door to your next IT project.

It is necessary to know how to write a good resume. Your CV tells your career story and you can use it to showcase your project portfolio. Together with a reference, it helps clients decide whether you are the right candidate for the project or not.

Let's take a few minutes to learn how a proper CV should look like. We know that manuals are usually not such fun to read. But it is like following an IKEA manual, LEGO building instructions, or a book of recipes. You have to read it at least once to get it. And then it’s good to practice until you become a real “CV writing expert”.

But if you are a person who likes reading manuals, you will definitely love it. And you will come back to read this article as many times as possible.

Let’s begin!

CV Format

As you write your resume, you always have to think who will read it. Usually, recruiters or sourcing specialist are those who first see a candidate’s CV. They go through many candidate profiles every day, trying to look for skills, experience and other key words.

Therefore, a structured CV is prefered where information is formatted chronologically. That means your resume contains a list of milestones/skills, beginning with the most recent skill. Such CVs are clear, well-arranged and easy to read.

Personal Information

A structured CV has some rules. Let’s start with the “Personal information” section. This part of CV should contain information such as:

  • name
  • surname
  • title
  • address (city, country)
  • phone number (or SKYPE ID)
  • email address
  • web page / LinkedIn profile.

Don’t forget to attach a proper photo. Try to avoid pics from a party or vacation as well as photos with a disturbing background. A photo of you wearing sunglasses is not appropriate either. When choosing a photo, always remember it is going to represent you.

guy correct

Ing. NAME SURNAME

Bratislava, Slovakia
+421 999 000 000 | email@email.sk
www.namesurname.sk

woman incorrect

Ing. NAME SURNAME

Bratislava, Slovakia
+421 999 000 000 | email@email.sk
www.namesurname.sk

Job Experience | Career History

The most important step in a resume is to write about your professional experience and career history.

When describing your job experience, try to use terminology that is typical for industry you’ve worked in (e.g. the banking industry has its specific terminology, as well as telecommunications or IT). It simply means you should use different “professional language” for different jobs (projects) and industries.

Write as much as possible - the more information you give, the better your impression on the recruiters. Don’t hesitate to mention your contribution to the company or industry and your biggest success.

When describing your work experience, always mention:

  • name and location of the organisation
  • job title/project name
  • start & end date of your employment (project)

Let’s have a look at some specific jobs (projects) and information you should include in your resume when describing them:


DEVELOPER


  • Participation in the delivery of the whole project or a specific module
  • Size of the project
  • Team composition, inputs, analyses
  • Project management methodology (Waterfall, Scrum, Kanban)
  • iOS/Android + app URLs (googleplay/appstore)
  • UI/UX - mockups, demos
  • WEB or JS Developer + project URLs

A TEMPLATE

PROJECT NAME (PERIOD)
TITANS - HERCULES Portal (2015 - 2020)
ROLE
JavaScript Developer, FE Architect
PROJECT DESCRIPTION
The aim of the project was to create a CRM customer web portal for a telecommunications company.
ACTIVITIES

  • Designing architecture for a web portal
  • Web portal development
  • Optimising performance of the portal
  • Testing and implementing new functionalities of the portal
  • Code quality control
Cooperation within a 15-person team.
TECHNOLOGY
HTML5, CSS3, JavaScript - ES6, Angular 5, TypeScript, Bootstrap 4, XML, Git, Scrum, MySQL, PostgreSQL, SASS, Gulp, Grunt, Webpack

SYSTEM ADMINISTRATOR (NETWORK ADMINISTRATOR, DEVOPS)


  • Standby - 24/7, 8x5, 3-shift operation
  • Working with networks/servers applications

A TEMPLATE

PROJECT NAME (PERIOD)
TITANS – ZEUS Server (2007 – 2010)
ROLE
System Admin, Network Admin
PROJECT DESCRIPTION
Modification of the original infrastructure and migration to the new LINUX server.
ACTIVITIES

  • Designing and implementing a new server infrastructure
  • Managing and optimising network servers
  • Installing and configuring software and hardware
  • Ensuring smooth operation of transaction services
  • Monitoring performance and maintaining the system
  • Troubleshooting issues and analysing operational risk
Cooperation within a 4-person team.
TECHNOLOGY
TCP/IP, UDP, Windows, Linux, – Powershell, Java

Analyst


  • Types of project documentation (MS Word, UML models, EA, combination of them)
  • Scope of the documentation
  • Number of analysts working on the project
  • Business analysis/IT analysis,
  • Communication directly with the client or with developers

A TEMPLATE

PROJECT NAME (PERIOD)
TITANS - DIONE App (2015 - 2020)
ROLE
ICT Analyst, Tester
PROJECT DESCRIPTION
The aim of the project was to automate human resources, vehicle and real estate planning system.
ACTIVITIES

  • Mapping of the original state (process & activities)
  • Describing real world objects (DOM)
  • Identifying the state of objects
  • Optimising processes (basic LEAN rules)
  • Identifying use cases, user training
  • Designing screens, LDM from DOM, state & sequence diagrams
  • Creating testing scenarios, functionality testing
  • Creating project documentation
  • Presenting of solutions and results
Communication with client and developers during system development. Cooperation within a 15-person team.
TECHNOLOGY
UML 2.0, Enterprise Architect, BPMN, SQL, EPC, XML, XSD, XSLT

PROJECT MANAGER


  • Management of one or multiple teams/projects
  • Project management methodology (Waterfall-Prince2, Waterfall – without methodology, Agile-Scrum, Agile-Kanban, etc.),
  • The budget of the project you managed, unless prohibited by the NDA (Non-Disclosure Agreement)

A TEMPLATE

PROJECT NAME (PERIOD)
TITANS - PROMETEUS App (2015 - 2020)
ROLE
Project Manager
PROJECT DESCRIPTION
The aim of the project was to create a web and a mobile application for ordering private jets.
ACTIVITIES

  • Defining the scope of the project
  • Setting a project budget and planning resources
  • Developing a project implementation plan
  • Managing the project throughout its life cycle
  • Identifying risks
  • Communicating with board members and external contractors
SCRUM management methodology, management of an international 70-person team, project budget: EUR 100 million.
TECHNOLOGY
Scrum, MS Project, Visio, Java, JavaScript, Tomcat, Oracle, Jira

KNOW-HOW

Now it’s time to mention all your skills and to highlight your technology background. What’s the programming language you are proficient in? Can you work with databases? Which frameworks or repository systems do you know? What about other web technologies, operating systems?

Use this section to show off and to collect some valuable points which will help you stand out of the rest.

Qualifications | Education

Continue with basic information about your education. The list of schools (universities) should be mentioned in chronological order, too. Name all the schools you visited, the start and end date of your study and the subject/course you studied at each school. Start with the secondary school - there is no need to mention your primary school in a CV.

Other Certifications

If you have IT or any other certifications, don’t forget to share this info in your resume. Certifications show your value to future employers and it is again a great way to differentiate yourself from others.

Remember to name all the courses or interesting programmes you've joined so far, together with their start & end dates.

Languages | Interests | References

The next section is about languages you speak and interests you have. For languages, it's important to include also the level of your language skill (following the CEFR), starting with the highest level of proficiency.

Interests may include also volunteering experience and all the activities you like and which describe your personality.

In references, provide the full name, job title and contact info about each of your referees (which are usually your previous employers/clients).

What To Avoid When Writing a CV

Beware of any gap years in your resume. What does it mean? It’s always better to explain career gaps if there are any in your CV. It doesn’t matter that you took some time away to travel or you didn’t work because of maternity/paternity leave. Be honest and briefly justify any of your career breaks.

Make sure your CV is absolutely typo-free and grammatically correct. Any misspellings or typos will definitely spoil the good impression you try to make on recruiters.

Don’t lie about your career experience or anything else in the resume. Any will catch you up sooner or later and once the truth is revealed it can seriously jeopardise your career.

How Should Your CV Look Like?

There are many templates in the virtual space you can use for your CV. The final decision is up to you. You can also try one of our CV templates in slovak, english or german.

When creating your resume, make sure that the end result is a professional, visually clean and easy-to-read document. If you want to be creative, don’t forget that less is sometimes more.

Focus on the content of your CV. If a project is located abroad or a client requires that you speak a foreign language, try to write your resume in that particular language.

It takes some time to write a good CV and it is not easy at all. But think about it as a high-return investment in yourself and your career. So go and put some time in your resume. It’s the first important step on your journey to your #dream job (IT project).


HERE YOU CAN DOWNLOAD OUR SLOVAK CV TEMPLATE, ENGLISH CV TEMPLATE OR GERMAN CV TEMPLATE.