As a communication officer you will be used to communicating your message to colleagues and customers.
But to land a top communications job, you need to communicate your skills and suitability in a winning CV.
In the guide below we’ll cover all of the insights you need to create an effective communications officer CV and start landing interviews.
- Communications officer CV example
- Structuring and formatting your CV
- Writing your CV profile
- Detailing work experience
- Your education
- Skills required for your Communications officer CV
Communications officer CV example
Before you start writing your own CV, take a look at the example Communications officer CV above to give yourself a basic understanding of the style and format that recruiters and hiring managers prefer to see.
Also, take note of the type of content that is included to impress recruiters, and how the most relevant information is made prominent.
Communications officer CV structure and format
If they can find the information they need quickly, they’ll be happy; but if they struggle, your application could be overlooked.
A simple and logical structure will always create a better reading experience than a complex structure, and with a few simple formatting tricks, you’ll be good to go.
- Length: Recruiters will be immediately put off by lengthy CVs – with hundreds of applications to read through, they simply don’t have the time! Grabbing their attention with a short, snappy and highly relevant CV is far more likely to lead to success. Aim for two sides of A4 or less.
- Readability: Columns, lists, bullet points, bold text and subtle colour can all help to aid the readability of your CV. Your overarching goal should be to make the content as easy to read and navigate as possible, whilst also aiming to make your key skills and achievements stand out.
- Design: When it comes to CV design, it’s best to keep things simple and sleek. While elaborate designs certainly command attention, it’s not always for the right reasons! Readability is key, so whatever you choose to do, make sure you prioritise readability above everything.
- Avoid photos: Don’t add photos, images or profile pictures to your CV. Not only do they take up much-needed CV space, but they’re actually completely unnecessary and won’t boost your CV at all.
Structuring your CV
As you write your CV, divide and sub-head into the following sections:
- Name and contact details – Always start with these, so employers know exactly how to get in touch with you.
- CV profile – Add a short summary of your relevant experience, skills and achievements, which highlights your suitability.
- Core skills section – A 2-3 columned list of your key skills.
- Work experience – A detailed list of any relevant work experience, whether paid or voluntary.
- Education – An overview of your academic background and any training you may have completed.
- Hobbies and interests – A brief overview of your hobbies and interests, if they’re relevant (optional).
Now I’ll guide you through exactly what you should include in each CV section.
CV Contact Details
Begin by sharing your contact details, so it’s easy for employers to give you a call.
Keep to the basics, such as:
- Mobile number
- Email address – It should sound professional, with no slang or nicknames. Make a new one for your job applications if necessary.
- Location – Simply share your vague location, for example ‘Manchester’, rather than a full address.
- LinkedIn profile or portfolio URL – Remember to update them before you send your application.
Communications officer CV Profile
Your CV profile is the first thing recruiters will read – so your goal is to give them a reason to read onto the end of the document!
Create a short and snappy paragraph that showcases your key skills, relevant experience and impressive accomplishments.
Ultimately, it should prove to the reader that you’ve got what it takes to carry out the job.
Tips for creating an impactful CV profile:
- Keep it brief: Recruiters are busy, so to ensure your profile is actually read, it’s best to keep it short and snappy. 3-5 punchy lines makes for the perfect profile.
- Tailor it: Recruiters can spot a generic, mass-produced CV at a glance – and they certainly won’t be impressed! Before you write your profile (and CV as a whole), read through the job advert and make a list of any skills, knowledge and experience required. You should then incorporate your findings throughout your profile and the rest of your CV.
- Don’t add an objective: Avoid discussing your career goals in your CV profile – if you think they’re necessary, briefly mention them in your cover letter instead.
- Avoid cliches: If your CV is riddled with clichès like “Dynamic thought-leader”, hit that delete button. Phrases like these are like a broken record to recruiters, who read them countless times per day. Hard facts, skills, knowledge and results are sure to yield far better results.
What to include in your Communications officer CV profile?
- Summary of experience: Start with a brief summary of your relevant experience so far. How many years experience do you have? What type of companies have you worked for? What industries/sectors have you worked in? What are your specialisms?
- Relevant skills: Highlight your skills which are most relevant to Communications officer jobs, to ensure that recruiters see your most in-demand skills as soon as they open your CV.
- Essential qualifications: If the jobs you are applying to require candidates to have certain qualifications, then you must add them in your profile to ensure they are seen by hiring managers.
Quick tip: Your CV is your first impression on recruiters, so it’s vital to avoid spelling and grammar mistakes. Use a free writing assistant tool, like Grammarly, to check over your CV before hitting send.
Core skills section
Your CV is the very first impression you’ll make on a potential employer.
A disorganised, cluttered and barely readable CV could seriously decrease your chances of landing interviews, so it’s essential to make sure yours is slick, professional and easy to navigate.
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Work experience/Career history
Now it’s time to get stuck into your work experience, which should make up the bulk of your CV.
Begin with your current (or most recent) job, and work your way backwards.
If you’ve got too much experience to fit onto two pages, prioritise space for your most recent and relevant roles.
Structuring your roles
If you don’t pay attention to the structure of your career history section, it could quickly become bulky and overwhelming.
Get in recruiters’ good books by creating a pleasant reading experience, using the 3-step structure below:
Firstly, give the reader some context by creating a punchy summary of the job as a whole.
You should mention what the purpose or goal of your role was, what team you were part of and who you reported to.
“Reporting to the Head of Communications and responsible for planning and delivering successful, high quality marketing and communications projects for a nationwide public housing partnership.”
Use bullet points to detail the key responsibilities of your role, highlighting hard skills, software and knowledge wherever you can.
Keep them short and sharp to make them easily digestible by readers.
- Generate outstanding and engaging content for multiple business communication channels including the company website, published newsletters, company events and social media channels
- Writing news articles, blogs, promotional material, internal reports and other business wide communications
- Coordinate the design and creation of various brand materials including marketing, commercial publications and social media articles
Lastly, add impact by highlight 1-3 key achievements that you made within the role.
Struggling to think of an achievement? If it had a positive impact on your company, it counts.
For example, you might increased company profits, improved processes, or something simpler, such as going above and beyond to solve a customer’s problem.
- Introduced and developed the use of Facebook Ads to grow public engagement, resulting in an increase in web traffic of 35% and a further increase in revenue
- Assessed public housing competitors to find a gap in the market, resulting in The Home Company filling this gap and taking the top spot as the best performing public housing provider in the North of the UK
Although there should be mentions of your highest and most relevant qualifications earlier on in your CV, save your exhaustive list of qualifications for the bottom.
If you’re an experienced candidate, simply include the qualifications that are highly relevant to Communications officer roles.
However, less experienced candidates can provide a more thorough list of qualifications, including A-Levels and GCSEs.
You can also dedicate more space to your degree, discussing relevant exams, assignments and modules in more detail, if your target employers consider them to be important.
Interests and hobbies
Although this is an optional section, it can be useful if your hobbies and interests will add further depth to your CV.
Interests which are related to the sector you are applying to, or which show transferable skills like leadership or teamwork, can worth listing.
On the other hand, generic hobbies like “going out with friends” won’t add any value to your application, so are best left off your CV.
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Essential skills for your Communications officer CV
Tailoring your CV to the roles you are applying for is key to success, so make sure to read through the job descriptions and tailor your skills accordingly.
However, commonly desired Communications officer skills include:
- Writing – Demonstrate that you can write engaging written copy.
- Interpersonal skills – Showcase your interpersonal skills and how they facilitate communications, including written and verbal skills.
- Social media – List your specific social media skills and how they have been used to achieve objectives.
- Presentation skills – You need to give evidence that your presentation skills are clear, engaging and professional.
- Planning and organisation – Communication officers need to show on their CV that they are skilled at planning and organising, as well as excellent time management.
Writing your Communications officer CV
A strong, compelling CV is essential to get noticed and land interviews with the best employers.
To ensure your CV stands out from the competition, make sure to tailor it to your target role and pack it with sector-specific skills and results.
Remember to triple-check for spelling and grammar errors before hitting send.
Good luck with the job search!