With software development being such competitive industry to get in to - what information should you be including in your software developer CV?
Employers are looking for key skills that will be transferable to the role you are applying for as well as evidence of your enthusiasm, motivation and positive attitude.
You should begin your software developer CV with an introduction to yourself, your characteristics and aims. This should be relatively short (between 4 and 6 lines) and should be focused around the role you are applying for. I.e. if you are applying for a role with particular weighting on PHP skills – detail when you have used these skills and why they are interesting to you.
As with all CVs you should only list your most important qualifications. Start with the most recent and ensure you include all the relevant information (where you studied, course title, dates and result). If you have industry relevant qualifications, make sure that these are prominent and don’t be afraid about going in to detail if necessary i.e. mentioning particularly relevant modules etc. Employers will still expect to see some academic qualifications as well so include degrees, A-levels or GCSE’s if you have them – but keep this information brief.
All experience should be listed in reverse chronological order starting with your most recent. There is no obligation to enter exact start and finish dates – so if you can’t remember enter months or even just the years that you held that job for. You should try to include all positions you have previously held; however only go in to detail on the most recent or particularly relevant roles.
When describing a job role, make sure you think about the skills that will be key in your new role and take them into consideration when writing about the tasks you undertook. You should start each description with your strongest/most relevant skill and then work backwards.
This is a section we recommend to technically skilled professionals for most types of IT jobs in order to be crystal clear with the different technical skills they hold – you can list skills alongside proficiencies, i.e.
- PHP – professional
- C# - basic
Or alternatively, group skills by relevance i.e. hardware, software, networking etc
Hobbies and Interests
This is a small piece (2-3 lines) about what you like to do outside of work. It is included on a CV in order to give the employer a better idea of your character and your likely fit within the organisation you are applying to.
Simply a section in which to include any miscellaneous information such as if you hold a driving licence etc.
Referees are a hugely important part of the recruitment process – however, established professionals can sometimes have reason to withhold referees details until after interview. This is perfectly acceptable so do not be afraid of adding “referees available on request” to this section. If however you have no reason to withhold your referees at this stage it is recommended to put their name and contact details (including postcode) on your CV.
Other things to consider when writing a software developer CV
- A CV is a snap shot of you that an employer is unlikely to read in depth initially so it is vital to make sure it is eye catching and professional looking – first impressions count!
- There is no need to put a photo on your CV – we would actually recommend against this. Let your experience/qualifications do the talking.
- Avoid repetition – it gets boring to read you have excellent communication skills, developed in each role you have held and will cause an employer to give up reading.
- Keep things concise. A CV should be no longer than 2 A4 pages. Employers are inundated with CVs for every position and simply don’t have time to read each CV in depth – if yours is too long it’s unlikely they will bother in the first place.