Have you ever asked how long a recruitment manager looks at your CV before deciding whether you’re the perfect candidate? According to a study, on average a recruiter takes a decision on a given CV in less than 10 seconds;  specifically, in 6 seconds. That’s how long you have to grab the attention of the person in charge of the selection process. Is it enough?

According to a study prepared by theladders.net, which uses a technique known as eye tracking, which consists in examining people’s eye movements when they read a CV, in that time a recruiter looks for information in a CV in the following order:

  • Name
  • Current job and company
  • Starting date
  • Previous jobs and companies
  • Starting and finishing date with these previous companies
  • Main qualification

With this in mind, now’s the time to revise various parts of your CV to ensure that it passes through the recruitment manager’s first filter:

General style

Recruiters appreciate a clear and easy-to-read style. Don’t be too original with your letter type as this may make your CV difficult to read; choose a simpler one instead.


Write your name so that it is visible and don’t accompanying it with data that recruiters find irrelevant, such as your National Identity Number or your marital status. But don’t forget to include contact details, email or phone number, or the url of Linkedin, for example.

Current job, company and date

If you are in work, you must state when you commenced your current position. If you are no longer in employment, put the range of dates of your last job. The position that you held and the name of the company must be on different lines and, if possible, in different type, so that they stand out. For example, the position could be in small letters and the name of the company in block capitals and bold.

Previous jobs, companies and dates

Organise all of your work experience in chronological order, starting with the most recent job using the format described above.

Main qualification

Include in this section information on any training (whether or not it is officially recognised) that you’re doing or have already done and, naturally, those courses that you’ve completed which relate to the job you’re applying for. Remember to include when and where you did any such courses.

Update your CV and make sure it passes the 6 second filter!

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