Formatting Your CV is Crucial: Here’s Why

As a jobseeker, your CV is the first impression you give to a company. In most cases, it can make or break your job search. It shows recruiters how you organise your ideas and collect your thoughts. An unformatted CV can make it difficult for a recruiter to read and for you to move forward to the interview round of the hiring process.

Does your CV have more than one font?

It isn’t necessary to use more than one font style; it can make your CV look cluttered and all over the place. Stick with one font.

Are your bullet points/numbering consistent?

Some people are unfamiliar with how to format using bullet points or numbering. I’ve seen CVs where people use various bullet points – you shouldn’t really need more than two different types of bullet points.

Is your CV correctly indented?

I have come across CVs where people have used the space bar to achieve indentation. By doing this, it misaligns the text and when you go back to make some more changes, trying to amend a misaligned sentence can be a nightmare. Indenting your CV correctly means everything is beautifully aligned and if you need to go back to your CV to add an additional line, it doesn’t throw everything else out.

Are you using the correct ‘English’ for where you are applying? UK vs American

This is one that I’ve see a lot. The spelling of some words differs between American English and UK English; realize/realise, organize/organise, utilize/utilise. When you are applying for jobs in the UK, you have to ensure you use the correct ‘English’.

Number for pages for a CV

When a company is looking through a pile of CVs, most won’t read past the first page, second if you are lucky, so the most important information needs to be on the first page. It is acceptable to have a two-page CV or even three, at a push. I’ve seen CVs that are six pages long and this is completely unnecessary. A lot of CVs that are longer than three pages include a lot of white space and the number of pages can be reduced if they are formatted correctly.

White space

You don’t want your CV to look cluttered, but you don’t want too much white space either – your CV needs to display a good balance between the two. Too much white space can tell the recruiter that you don’t have much work experience and are trying to fill in the space.


Writing your CV can be a tedious task and I know people who have just one CV they will send to every position they apply for. Your CV needs to be tailored to each job application. Carefully go through the job description and replicate some of the keywords into your CV.

And finally, grammar

It Is essential you use the correct grammar, and spell-check won’t always be your friend here. For example, the word ‘stationery’ and ‘stationary’ are both correctly spelt words but their meanings are completely different.

If you are looking for someone to format your CV or produce a document for your business, drop me an email at

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