Free CV template download
If you want job interviews, you need an impressive CV.
You need the kind of CV that wows recruiters and leaves employers desperate to meet you.
We have created a free CV template that will allow you to create an interview-winning professional CV in minutes.
We’ve also included some detailed instructions and advice on using the template below.
Download your CV template and start landing job interviews ASAP.
Free CV template & how to use it
If you want to maximise your chances of landing job interviews, then take a few minutes to read our guidance to using your CV template.
The key to a good CV, is that is must quickly demonstrate that you have the perfect skills and knowledge to perform the jobs you are applying for. It’s that simple.
Your CV layout
Our professional template will ensure that the structure is easy for busy employers to read; you just need to focus on filling your CV with the right content.
The diagram above shows a brief overview of your CV layout, and how much space each section should take up.
CV length: Your CV should be around 2 pages in length so that it is short enough to hold the attention of a recruiter or hiring manager and tell your story without boring them. If it comes in a little longer, don’t worry – but certainly don’t stray on to the 4th page.
Quick tip: Before you start writing your CV, it’s a good idea to do some research into your target roles and find out exactly what your potential employers are looking for in a candidate. A quick search through relevant job adverts is a good place to start.
Give your CV an appealing professional title
Head your CV up with your name and a professional title to set the tone and instantly show readers your profession.
Some good examples of a professional title are:
Insurance sales manager
Quick tip: This title can be quickly altered for different applications in order to tailor the CV towards each job more specifically.
Sell yourself with a punchy CV profile
To grab the attention of a busy recruiter or hiring manager, you need to have a persuasive profile at the top of the page, which instantly shows them that you are a good fit for their vacancy.
Think of your profile as a sales pitch. It needs to excite readers and encourage them to read your CV in full.
Your CV profile should be a few lines long, feature the most important high level features of your work, and be tailored towards the requirements of the roles you are applying for.
Good points to include in your profile are:
- Industry experience (length of experience, specialisms)
- Type of companies worked for (sector, size, markets)
- Knowledge (education, qualifications, regulations)
- Environments worked in (e.g. large IT projects, busy sales floor etc.)
- Tools and software used
- How your work impacts your employer (generating sales, saving costs, increasing users etc.)
Here are a couple of CV profile examples:
Office Administrator CV Profile
IT Project Manager CV Profile
Avoid filling your CV with generic cliché terms such as:
“Hard working motivated professional worker with ability to go the extra mile and get results”
These types of cliché phrases do not tell readers anything factual about you. For example, if you read the example above on a CV; would you know what the person does? No, because it’s too generic.
It’s OK to include some of these terms but don’t overdo it.
If you wanted to improve the example above, you could change it to:
“Motivated customer sales professional with 5 years of experience in attracting retail clients and generating profitable sales”
Now you can begin to understand what this person’s profession is and the type of work they do.
Add your “core skills”
If you want your CV to rapidly show recruiters that you have the in-demand skills they need, then include a bullet pointed core skills section under your profile.
They look like the below.
A core skills section is simply a bullet pointed list of your most relevant skills and knowledge that should be tailored directly towards your target roles’ requirements.
The effect of these short, targeted points is that they jump out of the page at the reader and give them an instant summary of your important talents, even from a quick glance.
Again, you should avoid cliché phrases in this section and focus on facts.
List your CV work experience
Your work experience (whether it be direct work experience, school placements or voluntary work) gives you a great opportunity to show employers how you apply your skills to make an impact in the work place.
If you are an experienced candidate, then focus on detailing your career experience.
If you are an inexperienced candidate (such as a graduate or school leaver), then include school placements, voluntary work and personal projects to compensate for you lack of work experience, and show recruiters than you can contribute real value.
Ordering you roles
Start with your most recent role and work your way down to your oldest. The only exception to this is if you have an older role that is much more relevant to your target roles than your current.
For example, a law graduate who is currently working part time as a retail sales assistant, but did a placement with a law firm a year ago – probably shouldn’t start their roles with the current sales assistant role. They would be much better off leading with the law firm placement, because it is much more relevant if they are applying for graduate legal roles.
Structuring your roles
Your free CV template download will already have your roles structured as needed, but it’s good to know the reasoning behind the structure if you want to create an effective CV.
The annotated example below shows how roles should be structured and the type of information that should be included in each section.
You should open with an introduction to summarise the overall goal of the role.
Then bullet point your responsibilities to demonstrate your skills and how you contribute to the employer's success.
Round up the role with any impressive achievements you have made during your time there.
Include plenty of numbers in your roles
Numbers are very important in your roles because they give recruiters something to understand the scale of your work and benchmark you against other candidates.
For example, you could include the following figures.
Leading a team of 10
Managing a budget of £10k
Working across 5 locations
Looking after 200 customers
Reducing expenditure by 25%
Including numbers like these in your roles will really help you to quantify your value and prove your impact.
Shorten older roles
Recruiters will mainly be interested in your current and recent roles, because that is the experience that really shows what your current capabilities are. Include plenty of detail in your recent roles to give them what they want.
Older roles on your CV will receive less attention, so you can shorten them as you move down the CV.
Really old and irrelevant roles only need to be one or two lines long – enough to show your career path.
List relevant education, qualifications and technical skills
At the bottom of your CV, list your education and vocational qualifications. You can also add a technical skills section If you have a technical role such as an IT support engineer.
If you are an experienced candidate, you can keep your education section brief because recruiters will be more focused on your work experience.
If you are inexperienced such as a school leaver or graduate, then your education section should be detailed to showcase more of your educational aptitude.
Quick tip: Any qualifications that are important to your target roles should be mentioned at the top of your CV also to ensure they get noticed quickly. See also our best CV templates.
Check your CV thoroughly
Before sending your CV out to any recruiters or employers, you must check it thoroughly for errors. It only takes one mistake for a reader to start doubting your professionalism.
Check specifically for spelling mistakes, grammar errors and typos, as they will seriously damage your credibility.
Also, ask a friend to read it and let you know if everything makes sense to somebody reading it for the first time.
Take a look at this infographic which shows you 9 questions to ask before sending your CV out to the job market.
9 questions to ask before sending your CV summary
- Does it look professional?
- Does it create impact upon opening?
- Is it easy to read?
- Is it under 2 pages long?
- Does it reflect the requirements of my target jobs?
- Are my roles well structured?
- Have I proved my value?
- Have I included numbers?
- Is it easy to contact me?
More CV advice from our blogs
In addition to this template and guide, we have plenty more CV advice resources to help you create an interview-winning CV and land the job you want.
The most in-depth CV writing guide on the web that covers every aspect of creating an effective CV, from employer research, to writing powerful roles descriptions and proofreading your CV.
If you need some inspiration for your own CV, take a look at our example CVs from 10 major industries, complete with annotation that shows why they are good at winning interviews.
An in depth look at writing a CV profile that captures the attention of recruiters and sells your talents.
If you want to ensure that your CV is error free, browse our extensive list of common CV mistakes.
Good luck with the job hunt and don’t forget to download your free CV template today and take one step closer to your dream job.