The first thing employers look for in a CV

The first thing that recruiters look for in a CV

Recruiters are busy people; they rarely take more than a few minutes to read through each of the many CVs that cross their desk every day. They also know exactly what to look for in your profile to determine if you are a good fit for the position. We spoke to three professional recruiters, who told us about the first, and sometimes last, thing they look for when evaluating a candidate’s CV.

“First, I want to be sure that the candidate meets the criteria for the position (including their education, experience, and other factors), but I also focus on the stability of the candidate’s career path. Periods of inactivity could indicate a lack of consistency on the part of the person. For this reason it is very important that a candidate’s CV is written correctly, with exact dates for each position held.”

– Annie Pellerin, vice president of human resources and communication at Marmen

“When I’m recruiting for a professional position, the first thing I look at is the candidate’s education. This is very important for me as it represents a guarantee of the general level of ability of the candidate. A diploma doesn’t ensure that a candidate will be productive or compatible with our company culture, but it assures me as a recruiter that the person will not need to be trained in the basic aspects of the job, only the specifics of the particular position.”

– Véronique Côté, director of human resources at Stelpro

“When recruiting a senior-level candidate, I first examine their recent work experience: the more their experience is in line with the position, the more value the candidate has for the organization. For junior-level candidates, I primarily look at their level of education to provide support for their minimal work experience. I advise any potential candidate to be concise in their CV, to explain the essential aspects of their experience in a single paragraph, and to avoid long explanations about every position they’ve ever had. Candidates should explain themselves in their CV as if they were speaking to a new mother-in-law who knows nothing about their profession!”

– Charles Reny, director of recruitment at LGS