27/01/2011

That Important Piece of Paper

 

Do you know about a piece of paper which shall talk about you in your absence? Do you know that this piece of paper can make or break you? Did you ever realize that you simply scribble details in that piece of paper without understanding the severe after affects it may have? Which piece of paper are we referring to? We are referring to something which is interchangeably used either as Curriculum Vitae (CV), a Resume, or a bio data. However, in most of the instances, the first mistake is initiated with the wrong nomenclature and using one for the other as and when one likes to. The subtle difference existing between the three is important to know for the sender as the target audience to whom it is being sent would again vary.  A bio-data generally provides the information pertaining to ones physique, viz. height, weight, colour of skin, familial details along with a brief about academics and professional achievements. Resume is an abridged version talking only about qualifications and experience, which generally are not more than 2 pages. CV on the other hand detailing achievements, qualifications, experiences. The usability of either of the three depends upon the domain, the industry, the profession, the applicant is seeking, and also the level the candidate is in would further chart out the plan of action as far as making a CV, a Resume, or a Bio-data is concerned.

What should they contain?

Irrespective of the fact whether one is using a CV, a Resume, a Bio-data, the candidate or aspirant should put the right information which in turn enables in making the right impression the first time round. The basic information’s should always be there, whether one is referring to a CV, a bio-data or even a Resume. It would contain the personal details, the name, age, gender, family background, the educational background; the specializations opted for at different levels, the marks scored, special achievements, accomplishments, awards etc. The information presented should again be horses for the courses. There is no importance of personal physique related information for the job of a customer care executive, whereas the same may be a necessity if one is applying for the post of a pilot or a ground engineer. The information should be presented in a proper sequence so that it provides a flow and provokes the right thought process to the reader. At the end of the day it’s that piece of paper which would speak in the absence of the person.

Is there a recommended way of presenting a CV or Resume or Bio-data?

There are no recommended ways of presenting information in a CV/Resume/Bio-data. However, quite often the norm is to present the career objective, followed by academic achievements (for a fresh job aspirant), and work experience for an experienced campaigner. Professional achievements can follow which would entail throwing light on winning accolades in the professional domain, for a fresh candidate rewards and achievements in his academic life can make the right impression in the mind of his prospective employer. The details of publications etc. is generally not made as part of the CV/Resume/Bio-data, and it’s better to add as a link or as a separate paper so that the pages do not extend the normal standards of two or three at the most, for a fresh or little experience. It is always better to adopt a presentation which is unique, that however does not mean making a lousy format. A CV/Resume/Bio-data should always make one differentiate from the masses.

Some Don’ts of making a CV/Resume/Bio-data

There are common Don’ts of making a CV/Resume/Bio-data. Some of them are listed below-

(1)     Don’t cut copy and paste your CV/Resume/Bio-data from any source, its better to customize apropos your need.

(2)     Don’t paraphrase sentences from someone’s CV/Resume/Bio-data, especially career objectives. It’s better to develop your own objectives.

(3)     Don’t falsify statements, details pertaining to achievements, experiences etc.

(4)     Don’t hasten and make a CV/Resume/Bio-data and then send the same without adequate checking. One error can mar your chance to get that interview call.

(5)     Don’t make you CV/Resume/Bio-data loaded with too much information’s mainly the ones which are irrelevant

(6)     Don’t use the same CV/Resume/Bio-data, having similar information for openings across levels, departments, industries and business verticals. It is ideal to customize information accordingly.

(7)     Don’t use colors’; black and white is always appreciated.

(8)     Don’t put information in your CV/Resume/Bio-data, which you cannot defend or substantiate during the interview

(9)     Don’t include information like address of schools, primary level of information simply because you want to go through the courses

(10) Don’t claim something which would not reflect your true persona.

Finally it is important to make a CV/Resume/Bio-data which can represent the concerned individual whether it is applying for a job, or for seeking admission in some institutes of higher learning. Whatever may be the reason it is always important to understand that a CV/Resume/Bio-data is a replica of self. It’s therefore advisable to make one commensurate with the perception one is willing to have about self.