Employer advice: Why tailoring your CV will help you get a job

Employer Stephen Cole explains why candidates who've done their research stand out.

4 mins

We think it's important to tailor your CV or application to the job you’re applying for. But don’t just take our word for it. Employer, Stephen Cole, Managing Director of Cole Advertising & Design, explains why he values people who’ve taken the time to do their research.

Tailoring to the job advert

'We’ve recently finished a recruitment drive for a Business Development Manager position. As part of the process we requested that people submitting a CV demonstrate examples of times they had added value.

'We were looking for case studies highlighting when an applicant took on a specific project and exceeded expectations.

'I’m very interested in reading success stories from candidates’ careers and moments they were particularly proud of. Their commitment and passion can really shine through – from an employer’s perspective, this can help you stand out from the crowd!' 

  • Tip: Follow CV instructions. Many employers will disregard applications at first hurdle if candidate fire off a generic CV ignoring any specific requests 

'When we recruit, it's important that candidates appreciate what makes us tick.'

Tailoring to the company

‘The candidates we interviewed not only had included some great CV stories about their previous careers wins, but also quoted numerous client stories that they liked on our website. It showed that they had a real enthusiasm to work with us.

'At Cole AD, great teamwork, an enjoyable working atmosphere and dedication from all the staff is part of our ethos – when we recruit it is important that candidates appreciate what makes us tick.'

  • Tip: Research the employer’s website and follow them on social media too for latest news

Tailoring to the job

'If you’re applying for a job as a web developer for example, obviously technical skills are essential, but just as important is how you can work as part of a creative team with deadlines to meet.

Can you work under pressure? Can you work effectively as part of a team? Akin to many businesses, we need people ready to handle what comes at them and remain cool under pressure.'

  • Tip: Stay relevant by keeping up-to-date with news in your industry

Tailoring, but not embellishing

'Adding things to your CV that make you seem like you match the job description, but that aren’t true is akin to skating on thin ice.

Sadly, this happens sometimes at interview stage - we dig a bit deeper with a few CV related questions and the candidate panics. It is an awkward moment and any trust can be lost!'

  • Tip: It's stating the obvious, but be honest when writing your CV