So you have decided you want to work in the charity sector, it is important to make your CV perfect and increase your chances of an interview. Here are a few pointers to make sure your charity targeted CV gets noticed.
1. Do Your Homework
If you have previously applied for a range of different jobs using the same CV you now need to tailor it for a non profit organisation, this also applies to your covering letter. Research the charity you are applying to and develop your CV competences to tie in with the charity’s ethos and objectives. If you are new to the charity sector think about what skills you can transfer to a non profit organisation that will benefit them. The more you know about the charity and their projects the more you will be able to connect with them during the interview.
2. Think of the Bigger Picture
First you need to focus on getting the content of your CV correct before you start looking at the details like formatting and which fonts to use; this is not the only thing that will impress a future employer. It is likely you will need to make several revisions before you settle on a final version. Make sure you relate your skills and experience to the job specification and charities goals. The interviewer is going to be looking for what sets you apart from everyone else so you need to really promote yourself, which can be tricky when you only have 2 sides of A4.
Documenting your experiences in previous employment, school or volunteering can be difficult to summarize into a short space. When deciding what to include in your CV, refer back to the job specification and only included the most relevant. Once you have the list assembled; read it out loud several times and this will give you a better idea of how it will sound to the employer.
Bullet points are good to use as they help reduce the amount of unnecessary words and make it clearer to read. Where possible back up your statements by facts and figures. If you increased company sales, state by how much, time frames and other quantities.
Private sector companies might not be interested in your volunteering work but charities are always interested to hear about this. Most people who work in the third sector are really passionate and committed to the work carried out by the charity. By writing about your voluntary work and how you enjoyed it will really help you stand out.
Again this is another section of your CV which you can use to your advantage by tailoring it to the skills required in the job description. Practice answering questions about your skills and how you can elaborate on these further during the interview.
By taking more time to relate your CV to the job and charity you are more likely to get an interview for a very rewarding and fulfilling job.
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