If you’re looking for a new position in biotech but your CV doesn’t effectively showcase your incredible skills and knowledge of both biology and technology, you’re in the right place.
Below, we’ll share a range of top tips and expert advice to help boost your application and prove to potential employers how great you are.
We’ll even share a biotech CV example to inspire your own.
Biotech CV example
Before you start writing your CV, take a look at the example Biotech CV above to give yourself a good idea of the style and format that works best in today’s job market.
Also, take note of the type of content that is included to impress recruiters, and how the most relevant information is made prominent, to ensure it gets noticed.
Biotech CV format and structure
If you focus purely on the written content of your CV but ignore the style and layout, your efforts could end up wasted.
No matter how suitable you are for the role, no recruiter wants to spend time squinting and trying to navigate a badly designed and disorganised CV.
Instead, make sure to organise your content into a simple structure and spend some time formatting it for ease of reading – it will ensure every recruiter and hiring manager can read your CV with ease.
Tips for formatting your Biotech CV
- Length: It’s essential to keep your CV concise, regardless of whether you have one year or thirty years of experience. Recruiters are frequently managing multiple roles and responsibilities and do not have the luxury of reading lengthy CVs. Therefore, limit your CV to two sides of A4. If you have little industry experience, one page is sufficient.
- Readability: To help recruiters quickly skim through your CV, it’s important to format your section headings with bold or a different colour font and break up lengthy paragraphs into short sharp bullet points. This enables them to easily identify important information and assess your suitability.
- Design & format: While it’s important that your CV design looks good, it also needs to be functional (which means easy for recruiters to read) Keep the design simple to achieve a good balance between looking good and reading well.
- Photos: Recruiters can’t factor in appearance, gender or race into the recruitment process, so a profile photo is not usually needed. However, creative employers do like to see them, so you can choose to include one if you think it will add value to your CV .
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When writing your CV, it’s important to structure the content into the following key sections to ensure easy digestion by busy recruiters and hiring managers:
- Contact details: List your contact details at the top of your CV to prevent them from being overlooked.
- Profile: Begin with an introductory paragraph that captures recruiters’ attention and summarises what you have to offer employers.
- Work experience/career history: List your relevant work experience in reverse chronological order, starting with your current position.
- Education: Provide a brief summary of your education and qualifications.
- Interests and hobbies: An optional section to showcase any hobbies that highlight transferable skills relevant to your target jobs.
Now you understand the basic layout of a CV, here’s what you should include in each section of yours.
Write your contact details in the top corner of your CV, so that they’re easy to find but don’t take up too much space.
You only need to list your basic details, such as:
- Mobile number
- Email address
- Location – Don’t list your full address. Your town or city, such as ‘Norwich’ or ‘Coventry’ is perfect.
- LinkedIn profile or portfolio URL – Remember to update these before listing them on an application.
Biotech CV Profile
Recruiters read through countless applications every day.
If they don’t find what they’re looking for quickly, they’ll simply move onto the next one.
This short and snappy summary sits at the top of your CV, and should give a high-level overview of why you’re a good match for the job.
This way, you can ensure that busy recruiters see your suitability from the outset, and so, feel your CV is worth their time.
How to write a good CV profile:
- Make it short and sharp: Recruiters have piles of CVs to read through and limited time to dedicate to each, so it pays to showcase your abilities in as few words as possible. 3-4 lines is ideal.
- Tailor it: If recruiters don’t see your suitability within a few seconds, they may close your CV straight away. Your CV profile should closely match the essential requirements listed in the job ad, so make sure to review them before you write it.
- Don’t add an objective: You only have a small space for your CV profile, so avoid writing down your career goals or objectives. If you think these will help your application, incorporate them into your cover letter instead.
- Avoid generic phrases: “Determined team player who always gives 110%” might seem like a good way to fill up your CV profile, but generic phrases like this won’t land you an interview. Recruiters hear them time and time again and have no real reason to believe them. Instead, pack your profile with your hard skills and tangible achievements.
Example CV profile for Biotech
What to include in your Biotech CV profile?
- Experience overview: 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?
- Targeted skills: Employers need to know what skills you can bring to their organisation, and ideally they want to see skills that match their job vacancy. So, research your target roles thoroughly and add the most important Biotech skills to your profile.
- Important qualifications: Be sure to outline your relevant Biotech qualifications, so that anyone reading the CV can instantly see you are qualified for the jobs you are applying to.
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Core skills section
Create a core skills section underneath your profile to spotlight your most in-demand skills and grab the attention of readers.
This section should feature 2-3 columns of bullet points that emphasise your applicable skills for your target jobs. Before constructing this section, review the job description and compile a list of any specific skills, specialisms, or knowledge required.
Important skills for your Biotech CV
Molecular Biology Techniques – Using molecular biology techniques such as PCR, gel electrophoresis, cloning, and DNA sequencing.
Cell Culture – Culturing, maintaining, and experimenting with various cell lines, including mammalian, bacterial, and yeast cells.
Protein Biochemistry – Maintaining knowledge of protein purification, electrophoresis, western blotting, and enzyme assays.
Genetic Engineering – Maintaining expertise in genetic modification techniques, including CRISPR-Cas9, RNAi, and gene therapy methods.
Bioprocessing – Understanding bioprocess technology, including fermentation, downstream processing, and bioreactor operation.
Bioinformatics – Analysing genomic and proteomic data using bioinformatics tools and software.
Analytical Techniques – Using analytical techniques like HPLC, mass spectrometry, and spectroscopy for biomolecule analysis.
Regulatory Compliance – Maintaining familiarity with regulatory standards such as GMP (Good Manufacturing Practices) and GLP (Good Laboratory Practices) in the biotech industry.
Immunological Techniques – Conducting immunological assays like ELISA, flow cytometry, and immunohistochemistry.
Biostatistics – Applying statistical analysis to biological data, using statistical software like R or Python.
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Recruiters will be itching to know more about your relevant experience by now.
Kick-start this section with your most recent (or current) position, and work your way backwards through your history.
You can include voluntary and freelance work, too – as long as you’re honest about the nature of the work.
Structuring each job
Lengthy, unbroken chunks of text is a recruiters worst nightmare, but your work experience section can easily end up looking like that if you are not careful.
To avoid this, use my tried-and-tested 3-step structure, as illustrated 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.
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.
Round up each role by listing 1-3 key achievements, accomplishments or results.
Wherever possible, quantify them using hard facts and figures, as this really helps to prove your value.
Sample job description for Biotech CV
Involved the use of living organisms/systems or derivatives to drive eco-friendly solutions, for a company that is known for its commitment to commercialising bio alternatives to traditional petroleum chemicals and fuels.
- Study the interactions between microbial communities and their habitats.
- Conduct in-depth investigations and develop and execute strategies aimed at remediating various unclean locations.
- Devise plans for the efficient and sustainable handling, treatment, and disposal of different types of waste.
- Utilise microorganisms, plants, or enzymes to degrade or detoxify pollutants.
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Next up, you should list your education and qualifications.
This can include your formal qualifications (a degree, A-Levels and GCSEs), as well as sector-specific Biotech qualifications and/or training.
While school leavers and recent grads should include a lot of detail here to make up for the lack of work experience, experienced candidates may benefit from a shorter education section, as your work experience section will be more important to recruiters.
Hobbies and interests
The hobbies and interests CV section isn’t mandatory, so don’t worry if you’re out of room by this point.
However, if you have an interesting hobby, or an interest that could make you seem more suitable for the role, then certainly think about adding.
Be careful what you include though… Only consider hobbies that exhibit skills that are required for roles as a Biotech, or transferable workplace skills.
There is never any need to tell employers that you like to watch TV and eat out.
Creating a strong Biotech CV requires a blend of punchy content, considered structure and format, and heavy tailoring.
By creating a punchy profile and core skills list, you’ll be able to hook recruiter’s attention and ensure your CV gets read.
Remember that research and relevance is the key to a good CV, so research your target roles before you start writing and pack your CV with relevant skills.
Best of luck with your next application!