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5 top CV tips to secure your dream tech job in 2024

View of a resume & CV from above, tech job

ARTICLE SUMMARY

Getting your CV out there and noticed is hard! We sat down with Corinne Mills from Personal Career Management to get her tips on perfecting your CV and getting your dream tech job in 2024.

Corinne Mills is the Managing Director of Personal Career Management, the UK’s leading career coaching and outplacement company.

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Corinne and her team advise on all aspects of career management, including personal branding and how to land that coveted job. Corinne has worked for 30 years in the career management field, helping thousands of individuals with a wide array of career challenges. Their clients have ranged from senior executives – including FTSE 100 CEOs – and entrepreneurs, aspiring leaders and experts in their field, to career changers and those at the start of their career. 

Her book, You’re Hired! CV: How to write a brilliant CV, has consistently been the UK’s bestselling CV book since publication, proving highly popular with both the general public and industry experts. Corinne, who’s been called ‘the career guru’ by the BBC, appears regularly on BBC TV and radio, ITV, Channel 4 and Sky News as well as writing for many national newspapers.

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Your CV needs to grab the attention of recruiters and make you look like a perfect fit for the jobs you want.

That’s sometimes easier said than done, so it’s not surprising that so many tech industry professionals are taking advantage of the new AI language tools to help.

AI can easily write you a CV that will impress a recruiter, at least initially.  However, recruiters are increasingly alert to AI-washing and if your CV doesn’t provide authentic detail, then the glossy veneer of an AI generated CV won’t save you from the reject pile.

By all means use AI to generate ideas or rework a clumsy phrase.

But don’t forget, the fundamental principles of writing a Standout CV still apply.

Here are 5 key things to remember:

Prioritise Your Technical Skills and Expertise

At the top of your CV clearly show your relevant technical qualifications, certifications, coding languages, areas of knowledge, software and other expertise. This will help both a human recruiter and the keyword “parsing”  of the recruitment software to quickly find you and filter you to the top of the pile for shortlisting consideration. If these skills are buried at the bottom of your CV, or displayed in graphics rather than text form, you may never get noticed. 

Contextualise your experience

Showcase how you’ve used your knowledge and experience to good effect. For instance, don’t just talk about the software you’ve used to develop a mobile app, also describe the complexity of the challenge, the problem solving, the tight deadlines worked to, the positive reactions from the client and the larger purpose of the project e.g. to make customer ordering much simpler. It’s the detail in here that will also show that this is authentically your experience rather than an AI’s vivid imagination.

Don’t Neglect Your Soft Skills

While technical skills are certainly pivotal, don’t overlook the influence of soft skills in the tech industry. This includes attributes like communication, teamwork, and leadership, which can be especially challenging in a remote working environment.  When have you needed to build relationships, manage conflicts, communicate complex ideas or influence others?  Your soft skills capabilities show you can cope with the rough and tumble of corporate life and that makes you more employable.

Highlight Your Value-Add

Employers want results, tasks completed, timelines met, problems solved, customers satisfied, and quality improved with maximum efficiency, minimum hassle and lowest cost. Your CV needs to show that this is how you operate.  Describe projects where you have demonstrated this, highlighting where you have helped overcome logjams, improved systems and built strong relationships. These are the high performance behaviours that every recruiter looks for.

Keep It Concise and Clean

There are lots of CV templates you can download which are more visually attractive than your standard Word document.  However, an unconventional looking and heavily formatted CV may be ignored if its content cannot be “parsed” easily by the recruitment software.  Far safer to use a standard format. Use AI to check your grammar and rework clunky sentences. Also ask it to distill the key words it picks up from your CV so that you can ensure its transmitting the messages you want to convey.

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