How to write an enticing CV for your first job

cv writing tips

What is a CV and why is it important?


A Curriculum Vitae (CV) consists of a brief description of your career objective, educational qualifications, academic projects, internships, co-curricular and extra-curricular activities, achievements and personal information.

Your CV is a vital part of your job application. In fact, it gives you a chance to make the first impression, because your resume meets the recruiter/HR executive of a company even before he meets or speaks to you. Many students are either unaware of the importance of a resume in the selection process or tend to take it lightly. In either case, the chances of a student getting a job would be adversely affected because of a badly-drafted or routine CV.

A few useful guidelines in writing a good CV are given below for the benefit of students by Chaitanya Vaddi who has over 11 years of standing in recruitment and HR management in the IT industry.

  • Title
    • The title of your CV should be either your full name as in your 10th class certificate or ‘Resume’ or ‘Curriculum Vitae’.
    • Do not use any short forms like ‘Venky’ in place of Venkatesh, ‘Ramky’ in place of Ramakrishna etc.
    • You may use initials if your surname and middle name are too long but your first name should be mentioned completely.
  • Email Address
  • Mobile Number

    If you plan to relocate to another state after your B.Tech or intend to change the mobile number for some reason, give the mobile number of your parent or your home landline number.

  • Objective
      • It is like a personal mission statement. It tells the interviewer what you want to achieve through the job.
      • If needed take help from your friends to write the objective in error- free English.
      • If you have any problem putting your objective in error-free English, you can seek help from your friend. But do not copy the objective of someone else. The interviewer could easily identify it.
      • Use only simple English. High-sounding words are not necessary and could be even counterproductive.
      • You should be able to explain each and every word of the objective. So, be clear and specific. Avoid using vague language.
      • An objective should give the impression to the interviewer that employing you would be a win-win situation for both the organization and you.

    Therefore, you should mention how you would contribute to the company’s growth in addition to your career aspirations. Example:

      • (Wrong) “I want to work for an organization where I can make the best use of my skills and grow.” – This sounds selfish as it does not mention how you would contribute to the organization.
      • (Right) “I want to acquire new skills and grow along with the company.” – Sounds mutually-beneficial.
  • Educational Qualifications
    • Always provide complete details i.e. college name, university/board name and Percentage/CGPA. Some companies are particular about the college of the student. So, it should not be missed out.
    • If you feel that there is quite a variation in your percentages in 10th, Intermediate (12th) and B.Tech i.e. 80% in 10th, 95% in Intermediate and 60% in B.Tech, a better way of representing your academic scores are in grades. However, if you are confident that you can defend your uneven scores, you can represent them in percentages only.
  • Technical Skill Sets
    • One of the common mistakes made by students is that they mention all the programming languages, database management systems, operating systems and other subjects they learned in B.Tech.

    • What an interviewer expects from a fresher is basic knowledge in two programming languages, one database management system and one operating system, preferably Unix. So, you can mention your skills as below

      Programming Languages Basics of C and Java
      Operating Systems Windows and Linux
      Database SQL
      Tool Mention if you know any tool
    • Note that you need not mention the versions of operating systems viz. Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, 10 etc.

  • Project/Internship
    • Please mention the details of the project clearly.

    • Avoid being too technical in the project description as HR guys may not be able to understand the jargon.

    • For internship, the following details are a must

      • Description of internship

      • Roles and responsibilities

      • How the internship experience actually contributed to the development of your personality – Here, you can include how exposure to the corporate environment helped you learn about how to conduct yourself with senior colleagues, drafting official emails etc.

  • Achievements
    • This can include extra-curricular and co-curricular activities, participation in seminars, symposia, technical events, games etc.

    • If you have anything worth mentioning in team sports or NCC, please do not forget to include it in the CV because they show that you are a team player.

  • Personal Information
    • This should include

      • Father’s name

      • Date of birth

      • Marital status

      • Languages known

      • Postal address

  • Declaration
  • This is optional
    • However, if you choose to include it, please leave the date and place empty. This is because you never know who may forward your CV to whom and when. Imagine the impression an HR would get if he receives your CV dated a year ago!