As a man, if you went for an interview at say Virgin or MTV dressed in a pin striped suit you'd certainly get some funny looks in reception. You might not make it through security. Likewise, if you went for an interview at your local Council you'd be expected to wear a suit and tie, top shirt button done up even in the height of summer. I know, I've seen interviewees virtually passing out with heat exhaustion as they await their turn before the dreaded interviewing 'panel'. Obviously heat exhaustion won't have been a problem this summer.
The point is to tailor your approach to fit. If it's important for interviews, it's even more so for CVs.
No two jobs are the same. So it's not just a case of having two or three stock CVs for your job search. You should tailor your stock CVs to mirror and match the job you're applying for. If applying to an advertisement ask for a copy of the job description and person specification first. This will tell you much more about the job than the ad. If working with a recruitment consultant you should get these anyway. Look at the language they use, the competencies they're after. Now you can weave these into your CV. By doing this, you're showing explicitly not just that you've got the right skills, but you're also displaying the right cultural fit.
A few carefully targeted applications are usually much more successful than the scatter-gun approach. So, it may seem like more effort, but in the long run, you'll actually save a lot of wasted energy. And, just perhaps, get the interview for that job you really want.
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