How to set up a CV wardrobe resource

How to set up a CV wardrobe resource

Tailoring your CV doesn’t have to be too difficult, or too time consuming. If you get organised you can set yourself up with an effective resource that will save you time and energy in the long run, and will stop you fretting each time you rewrite things.

If you’ve ever come to write your CV and realised that you’ve totally forgotten what you did in that early management role eight years ago, can’t recall the exact budget responsibility you had in your last job, or have misplaced the name of that amazing project you delivered back in 2015, then a CV Wardrobe can really help you get on top of things.

Your CV Wardrobe is a digital armoire where you keep notes detailing all your work history, education, interests, voluntary roles, Personal Value Proposition statements, core skills and key attributes, as well as notes on budget size responsibilities, team sizes, and key achievements in each role you’ve ever done. Having all this listed out here without worrying about presentation or style means that you have all the information you will ever need in a central place at your fingertips. This is really useful for most people, and particularly helpful if you’re looking to change career or are juggling two different careers.

Keeping track of everything you have ever done can be tricky, which is why it’s useful to keep your CV Wardrobe up to date as and when you take on new responsibilities or achieve new things at work. Update it every few weeks or months and you’ll never forget what you did in a previous role again. Your CV Wardrobe can also bulge at the seams with information. It doesn’t need to be concise and punchy like your CV, which means you can keep extensive notes for the future. These can also come in handy to prepare for interviews later on.

You can organise your CV Wardrobe in the way which makes most sense to you. One of my CV clients, a leading CEO, has told me he finds it easiest to keep one CV Wardrobe folder and within it to create individual sections on each of the following areas:

  • Company Information – Includes key financials, strategic goals, staff numbers, website info, etc. for each company worked for
  • Work History – Individual sections for each job role ever done including key financials, budget sizes, team numbers and make-up, reporting lines, etc. and detailed information about key achievements in each role, overall strategy, individual ideas and insights, awards, etc.
  • Core Skills – A long list of the key skills and attributes picked up throughout career (this is invaluable to pick and choose from when tailoring CVs, and can save you heaps of time in the future).
  • Voluntary / NED information – Individual sections on voluntary and NED roles, key financials, key achievements etc.
  • Testimonials / Client or Colleague Feedback – A section noting any feedback received from clients or colleagues, recording formal or informal testimonials. These can be cited in future documents and can be particularly useful to incorporate into LinkedIn profiles etc.
  • Awards – notes and details of any awards nominated for or won, internal or external.
  • Research / Writing – A section listing published works, articles or reports.

If you juggle two or more careers or job-types, or if you do consultancy work alongside, you might wish to create two or more separate folders.

Don’t be afraid to make detailed and extensive notes in these folders. The more information you record, the more you will have to draw on in the future to hone your perfect CV.

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