Tag Archives: sector advice

Targeted Project Manager CVs – strengthening your applications

targeted CV for a job application has gained even more success in securing that all important interview – a lot of candidates have come to me for advice over the years stating that the hardest part of the recruitment process is actually obtaining an interview, they feel they would be able to sell themselves successfully for the role in interview but struggle to even get beyond the bottle neck which is the filtering process with hiring managers and recruitment personnel. A few years back when there were more roles than good candidates, CVs which tended to be fairly generic were considered and often gained shortlist for interviews – however a change in the job market has meant that there are less roles and more candidates applying which has driven a stricter filtering process and at one point, less desirable remuneration packages. Thankfully the offerings from employers has improved significantly due to candidates with a wealth of experience taking reduced salaries moving on to pastures new as the market picked up. However the filtering process has remained as strict as ever with employers wanting to see well written CVs with demonstrable experience of the types of projects you’ve been engaged in and how you deliver.

Here are a few points to consider when creating a targeted CV for a role:

1. Think about who the organisation is, if you are making a direct application to the employer – do your homework. What talent do they typically attract? Use Linkedin, execute a search on the company to check out the profiles of current employees – what backgrounds do they have? Is there a strong correlation with your career portfolio? If so, put greater emphasis on this detail in your CV by providing more information. This type of research can also assist you in identifying other organisations which your background may be attractive to.

2. Research the prospective employers’ website and just google about them – what types of projects are they working on or have they worked on recently which you can match your experience up to. By drawing attention to this in your CV you are highlighting your relevant and often additional skill-set providing the employer some insight into your abilities beyond the current projects longevity within the company.

3. Scrutinise the core competencies listed in the role description – have you addressed these in your CV? A comprehensive CV not only covers what you were doing but how you delivered too.

4. Check the detail – if the employer is looking for an experienced PM who has exposure to managing multiple concurrent projects valuing £5m, and you have done this, make sure it is covered clearly in your CV. Also if the job advert is asking for line management experience of 10 multi-disciplined staff and remote team management, have you met the criteria? Does your CV state this?

I have lost count of the really good project people I have worked with who have poor CVs, only stating the bare minimum in a CV – recruiters are finding it increasingly difficult to “sell” the candidates to their clients as CVs are bounced back with the response, “I asked for X Y Z, the CV doesn’t state it.”

Until you are sat in front of the employer where you will have the opportunity to really talk about your skills and experience, the only tool you have is your CV to get you there. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – it’s not necessarily the best candidates getting the interviews, it’s the best CVs.

The CV Righter can tailor your CV to specific job applications and also offers a quick turnaround service to ensure you meet the recruitment deadline. Don’t let your dream job fall through your fingers through not being able to sell yourself on paper – I know it’s hard to sit down and write your own CV, don’t let that be the only reason you are not securing interviews. Let The CV Righter do it for you, we’ll work with you to ensure your CV is selling you in the best light. Visit www.thecvrighter.co.uk and make contact to see how we can help you.

A shift in strategy for top police job, is this a sign of change in attitudes?

Friday’s news made an interesting read; “Tom Winsor ‘best candidate’ for police watchdog role” was the headline on the BBC news website. Interesting because what has traditionally been seen as a role for a police individual has been opened up to a civilian, the first time since the role was established. Winsor, a commercial lawyer has been handpicked by a committee and backed by the home office to take the role.

Could this be the start of a shift in the job market? Particularly for project management staff, who in recent years have struggled to shift into any role other than the sector or industry and project type they have experience in? PMO professionals have had an easier ride in transitioning into other industries but purely due to a lack of experienced individuals in the field during a time where employees in secure roles are less willing to move roles due to uncertainty in the market. PMO staff can be recycled within the organisation and set up to support the next programme of work whilst project managers (particularly those with a niche specialism) are more likely to be moved on or kept but to work on projects which do not “light their fire” hence more project managers actively searching for roles, meaning more competition which has lead on to hiring managers (in a risk averse state) picking candidates most closely matched to the organisation.

Adapting to change

I have often felt that businesses are missing a trick when it comes to bringing new employees onboard, surely someone who has a breadth of experience and skills in the field of PPM but less exposure to the “product” will be asking questions often overlooked by teams who are too familiar with it? Also it has often been seen that organisations adopt different ways of working across sectors – could elements of this be introduced into a different industry? It all comes down to perspective, strategy; and no doubt – fear of change.

So reading that Winsor is a prime candidate for the role filled me with a sense of hope for everyone looking to make changes moving forward. And a lesson to be learned here is that Winsor took on a piece of work to analyse police pay – the review left him unpopular with people within the force however he gained a great deal of exposure to how the force is operated. This insight and his ability to address key areas of change without fear of losing popularity coupled with a different perspective, the home office feel, has placed him in pole position for the job. Take opportunities to look into different areas and fields – it may well be your passport out of your current industry into a great new challenge.

The CV Righter is a professional CV writing service which was formed to assist all those in project management – having a background in managing projects and implementing PMO processes followed by 5 years experience in recruiting project management staff from support roles through to programme directors across all industries and sectors means we have a good insight into what the employer expects to see on your CV. If you would like to learn more about how we can assist you, get in touch: https://www.thecvrighter.co.uk/