Here’s a question which is often asked by people who are going through what can be a painstaking process of applying for a new job: Should you have a CV for every job that you are applying for?

There are a number of differing views on this.  My view is that any job applicant who is serious about securing the job of their dreams, should be prepared to put in the time and effort to tailor their CV to suit the requirements of the job.

Not all companies are looking for the same thing.  Emphasis can be placed on the need for applicants to have a particular skill set and certain experience which can vary from job to job and company to company, even if the job title is the same.  A common mistake of the job applicant is to send the same CV in to all jobs which have the same job title believing that if they tailor their CV to focus on that particular area in general, it will meet the job criteria for all of those jobs.


Your CV is your shop front

This to me is sheer laziness and does not bode for a good start! The experienced and trained eye of the recruiter can tell very quickly if the applicant has taken the time to adjust their CV to the role or if they have just sent in a generic CV.

I can use myself as an example. I have been in the HR profession for 10 years in a number of different roles.   Currently I am a HR Business Partner and you only have to Google “What is a HR Business Partner” to see that there are a number of different views as to what it is.  Some companies focus this role on the HR operations of a particular business unit and some on the strategic element.  Clearly two opposite ends of the “support” spectrum and skills/experience that is required of the HR Business Partner.  There would be absolutely no point in my applying to this type of role in different companies with a generic CV as it would be impossible for it to cover all the variance in requirements from company to company.  The truth is that I would probably end up on more reject piles than shortlist piles!

Read about the role

The point is that you should spend the time to look at the requirements of the role that you are applying for and tweak both your CV and cover letter to suit it accordingly. They aim is to be shortlisted and you will only be shortlisted it, at the initial review, you appear to meet the essential criteria for the job.  Once you are shortlisted you have your ticket into an interview where you can sell, sell and sell some more of you.

So what is the answer?  Yes, you should have different CV for every job application.  Do you not want to give yourself the best fighting chance of securing the job that is right for you?  After all, you spend 5 out of 7 days at work, so it is important!  Look at it as an investment into your future; short term pain for long term gain!   It’s a no brainer really.

Find out more here : Why you should always tailor your CV to the role