Things you need to do before you send your cv

So you’ve found an incredible job opportunity. The job requirements match your skills perfectly. In fact, it seems that they’re talking about you. You know that you can not only land the position but be extremely successful in the company. Moreover, the salary advertised matches your expectations and you’re excited about the project you’ll be working on.

In short, you can’t wait to apply. Your CV is up to date and there’s only one thing left to do: hitting ‘send’.

Man smiling as he applies for job on phone

Before you submit your application though, there are steps you need to take to make sure that you’re giving yourself the best chance of scoring an interview. Find below a checklist of things to do before sending the resume.

Make sure your CV is impeccable

Maybe you have regularly updated your resume but that doesn’t make it perfect for the position you’re after. Read the job ad again and tailor your CV accordingly. 

If it includes irrelevant sections or information, be ruthless and take them off. Make sure that the opening statement is catchy and succinctly explains why you’re the ideal candidate for the work. 

Another essential step in a resume check is proofreading. Use grammar tools, read it from bottom to top, and ask a friend for help: ensuring that your CV is free of mistakes should be one of your top priorities.

Don’t forget to name the file appropriately. A good idea is to use your full name and the position you’re applying for.

Check your profiles online

It’s a fact well known that recruiters Google candidates. This helps them get an idea of the personality of the job seeker, confirm what they write in their CV is true, and figure out if they’re a good fit for the company and its values.

What you need to do is checking what they’ll find. If you don’t like what you see, it’s time to revamp your online presence.

Untag inappropriate photos and turn your profiles to private on platforms like Instagram and Facebook if you don’t use them for professional purposes. 

Everyone is on LinkedIn nowadays and you can rest assured that HR managers will look you up there. If you don’t have an up-to-date account, get one now.

In general, LinkedIn is an amazing resource for those looking for employment. Have your colleagues endorse your skills and even write a review, follow relevant people and extend your network.

Contact your referees

It’s not advisable to include references in your CV unless specifically required in the job ad. That is a simple matter of space, you can use those lines to include important information that will convince recruiters to give you a call. Moreover, in markets like the UK, it’s taken for granted that recommendations will be available upon request.

However, references can be asked at any stage of the recruitment process. Candidates should always have letters ready and keep in touch with referees to let them know that they’re actively applying for jobs. This way, the referees won’t be surprised to be contacted by recruiters, and the job seeker will know that their praises will be sung. 

How should I submit my resume?

Sometimes, candidates forget to double-check how the organisation would like to receive applications. Openings are often advertised on LinkedIn, but many HR departments prefer to have CVs sent directly to their inbox and will ignore applications submitted through the platform. The same can be said for other websites. Read the description again and follow the instructions in the job ad.

Find out whom to address the email to

If you’re sending you resume via email, it’s important to do all you can to find out who will read it. It may be an HR professional or the head of the team you will work with. ‘To Whom It May Concern’ is no longer acceptable as an opening.

LinkedIn again makes things easier for you. Check who posted the job and if the information is not available, visit the profile of the company. There, you’ll find a list of employees. You can send a message to a member of the HR team and ask them directly whom to address your application to. Don’t let shyness stop you: you’re not bothering people, rather, you’re showing that you’re really interested in the job.

It may take some more effort with companies that don’t have a social network profile. In that case, have a good look at their official website. Chances are that there will be valuable information such as the name of some employees (then you can find them on LinkedIn) or a contact form to ask for help.