Working your way up to CFO (Chief financial officer) is no mean feat, but this executive-level role is ideal for those with a keen eye finance and plenty of ambition.
This, coupled with the very generous salary, makes it a very coveted role in any business, which means that the competition can be tough.
So, in order to show you’ve got what it takes, you need to create a strong CV that showcases your skills and experience.
And you can use our top tips and example CFO CV below to help you do this.
- CFO CV example
- Structuring and formatting your CV
- Writing your CV profile
- Detailing work experience
- Your education
- Skills required for your CFO CV
CFO CV example
Before you start writing your own CV, take a look at the example CFO 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 for chief financial officer roles, and how the most relevant information is made prominent.
CFO CV structure and format
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.
- Length: Two sides of A4 makes for the the perfect CV length, though one page is okay for less experienced applicants. This forces you to make sure that every single sentence adds value to your CV and ensures you avoid waffle.
- Readability: Make sure your CV is easy to read and looks professional by applying some simple formatting tricks. Bullet points are great for making large paragraphs more digestible, while formatting your headings with bold or coloured text will help the reader to find the information they need, with speed.
- 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: It’s tempting to add a profile photo or images to your CV, especially if you’re struggling to fill up the page – but it’s best avoided! They won’t add any value to your application and, as are not a requirement the UK, so recruiters do not expect it, or want to see it.
Structuring your CV
When writing your own CV, break up your CV content into the following key sections:
- Name and contact details – Place them at the top of your CV, so that employers can easily get in touch.
- CV profile – A punchy sales pitch of your key experience, skills and achievements to reel readers in.
- Core skills section – A bullet-pointed snapshot of your abilities.
- Work experience – A well-structured list of your relevant work experience.
- Education – An overview of any relevant qualifications or professional training you have.
- Hobbies and interests – A short description of any relevant hobbies or interests (optional).
Now I’ll guide you through exactly what you should include in each CV section.
CV Contact Details
Kick-start your CV with your contact details, so recruiters can get in touch easily.
Here’s what you should include:
- Mobile number
- Email address – Make sure it’s professional, with no silly nicknames.
- Location – Your town or city is sufficient, rather than a full address.
- LinkedIn profile or portfolio URL – Ensure they’ve been updated and are looking slick and professional.
Quick tip: Avoid listing your date of birth, marital status or other irrelevant details – they’re unnecessary at this stage.
CFO CV Profile
It’s ideal for busy recruiters and hiring managers, who don’t want to waste time reading unsuitable applications.
Think of it as your personal sales pitch. You’ve got just a few lines to sell yourself and prove you’re a great match for the job – make it count!
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: If you want to discuss your career objectives, save them for your cover letter, rather than wasting valuable CV profile space.
- Avoid cliches: If there’s one thing that’ll annoy a recruiter, it’s a clichè-packed CV. Focus on showcasing your hard skills, experience and the results you’ve gained in previous executive roles, which will impress recruiters far more.
What to include in your CFO 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: 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 CFO skills to your profile.
- Essential qualifications: If you have any qualifications which are highly relevant to CFO jobs, then highlight them in your profile so that employers do not miss them.
Quick tip: Even the best of writers can overlook typos and spelling mistakes. Use our partner’s CV builder to add pre-written content that has been created by recruitment experts, and proofread by our team.
Core skills section
Underneath your profile, create a core skills section to make your most relevant skills jump off the page at readers.
It should be made up of 2-3 columns of bullet points of your relevant skills.
Before you do this, look over the job description and make a list of any specific skills, specialisms or knowledge required.
Then, make sure to use your findings in your list. This will paint you as the perfect match for the role.
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
Whilst writing your CV, it’s essential to look at it from the eyes of a recruiter.
If they’re met with giant blocks of text which are impossible to navigate, they might get frustrated and skip onto the next CV.
Instead, make use of the 3-step structure shown below, to give them a pleasant reading experience.
Start with a brief summary of your role as a whole, as well as the type of company you worked for.
Follow with a snappy list of bullet points, detailing your finance duties and responsibilities.
Tailor it to the role you’re applying for by mentioning how you put the target employer’s desired hard skills and knowledge to use in this role.
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.
In your education section, make any degrees, qualifications or training which are relevant to CFO roles a focal point.
As well as mentioning the name of the organisation, qualification titles and dates of study, you should showcase any particularly relevant modules, assignments or projects.
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.
Essential skills for your CFO 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 CFO skills include:
Data analytics: A CFO must be able to analyse data from across the business and then provide data-driven reports and recommendations that align with the company’s financial goals
Budgeting and risk management: As well as implementing budgets across each department, you will be responsible for ensuring any business decisions are financially sound
Auditing: You must be able to manage or oversee independent audits across the company
Leadership: As the CFO, you’ll be required to manage and support the company’s finance or accounting teams
Regulatory compliance: Finally, you will need a deep understanding of regulatory compliance and what rules the business needs to be following in terms of financial transactions, data and more
Writing your CFO CV
Creating a strong CFO 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!