CV Advice For Construction Job Seekers
Following an uncertain 2020 where the construction industry held up the UK economy, this year is showing plenty of growth and in Spring 2021 the number of construction vacancies continues to climb. If you are actively seeking a new position you first need to get your CV in order; here are some helpful tips to improve your CV.
1. Avoid generic phrases
When recruiters and hiring managers are reading through your CV it is likely yours is in a pile with many others and therefore it will be scanned over quickly for a prompt yes or no on a position. In order to stand out, try to avoid generic statements about how you are “capable of working independently as well as in a team” or that you have a “positive, can-do attitude”. These phrases feature on so many CVs so much so that they become meaningless. Instead of generic comments about your work ethic, try to replace these with examples of when you have demonstrated these qualities in your career. For example, “I have managed projects up to £5m as a standalone manager but have also managed projects with trainees as part of my team.”
2. Include a history of your projects
Recruiters and hiring managers need to know the types of projects you have worked on in your career. “Experience on similar projects” is probably the number 1 feature hiring managers look for when shortlisting candidates. While this can be inferred from the companies you have worked for, it is always worth outlining the projects you have been involved in. This doesn’t need to be war and peace, a project name, sector, value and brief summary is enough information to get a strong understanding of your career history. A CV is just for getting your foot in the door, more detail about your projects can be explained during an interview.
3. Explain achievements instead of general duties
If you are a Quantity Surveyor, a Site Manager, a Design Manager etc. A hiring manager will know the general duties of your job already. If you write bullet points about how you liaise with clients, manage health and safety on site, or attend meetings, you are wasting valuable space to sell the unique points of your career.
Only include duties that do not come as standard with your role or include key areas that took up the majority of your time. It is also beneficial to include quantifiable achievements such as awards won on projects, number of successful tenders, or how much under budget a project was.
4. Think about keywords
Before getting to the point of reading your CV, hiring managers first need to notice it or find it online. Try to think about what a hiring manager might search for or look out for and include these buzzwords on your CV. Common searches are “job title” + “sector” + “location” so make sure you include all of these where you can.