Writing Your CV Using the STAR Method
Posted on Monday, June 29, 2020 by The Interviewer — No comments
At our London recruitment agency, we’re frequently contacted by candidates who just can’t get their CV down to two sides of A4. The problem is that neither we nor any other agency have the time to read any more than that.
We’re big fans of the STAR method as a way of succinctly answer interview questions, and we’ve found that it’s very useful for writing CVs too. It’ll help you fit everything in, highlight the most salient points for any recruiting manager, and ensure a successful CV.
What is the STAR method?
STAR is an acronym. It’s useful in an interview situation as it helps you remember what you need to say and in what order — great when you need to think on your feet! It can be used in a CV to showcase how your experience matches a job description. It stands for:
How do you use STAR to write your CV?
Let’s start with the situation. You simply state where you were and what you were doing. For example: “As a PA to a financial director…”
You complete that sentence by saying what you did (the task): “As an accounts administrator, I created a new system for expense reporting.”
The S and T of STAR should be short and punchy.
You then move on to action and result. This is the bulkiest part of your point, although it should still be succinct. You write down what skills you used to complete the task. For example: “I utilised my organisational, report writing, and broad administrative skills, creating a database that could automate 14 different reports.” Note how the sentence is rounded off with a clear result. Repeat this process throughout the experience section of your CV.
The benefits of the STAR method
The STAR method won’t just help you to keep things succinct. If used in conjunction with the job description for the role, it’ll ensure that you sell yourself to the employer. It’s also useful because applicant tracking systems (ATS) can pull out relevant keywords, meaning that your CV is more likely to be successfully shortlisted.
Using the STAR method can help you start getting your thoughts on paper in the way you need to. CV writing isn’t easy, especially as it’s not something most people do regularly!
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