Sunday, January 13, 2013

CV Writing Tips

Here is an extract from my book "How to Write a CV" in 10 easy steps. It is a flow diagram showing the steps needed to create a CV. This visual gives that much needed quick reference.

CV quick reference flow diagram

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

CVs/Resumes for the Mining Industry

CVs for the Mining Industry

There are a number of items you will need in creating a CV for the mining industry.

1.     What job are you wanting to do?
Take a look at this list and see if one fits you and your skill base:

Digger operator
Jumbo operator
Bogger operator

Excavator operator
Bulldozer operator
Grader operator
Scraper operation
Tip truck driver
Laboratory Assistant
Field Assistant – Sampling
Boilermaker (heavy fabrication)
Sheetmetal Worker (light fabrication)
Heavy vehicle mechanic
Plant mechanic

Civil/structural engineer
Electrical engineer
Electronics/Instrument Engineer
Environmental Scientist/Engineer
Geological Engineer
Metallurgist/Chemical/Process Engineer
Mining Engineer

2.     Once you have established what sort of position you are after, you then need to develop your CV with keywords that match this position.

A good idea is to read job descriptions of these roles and make a note of the key words used.

Think also about what type of machinery or equipment you are experienced in using, the brand, model and number; or if trucks think about its capacity in carrying loads.

You also need to provide driver’s licences of certain vehicles such as heavy truck and trailer, etc.

3.     Where are these jobs to be found and who are the key contacts?

Most of these jobs are to be found in Western Australia whose capital city is Perth.

Some key contacts are:

These sites also give further leads which you may want to investigate.

4.     If you need help in constructing your CV for the mining industry the trades CV package (includes covering letter) is $189 + GST, professionals package $270 + GST, and managerial $325 + GST.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Choosing a CV Writing and Résumé Preparation Service

Choosing a CV Writing or Résumé Preparation Service
Use this checklist to ensure you get the best deal.
  1. First check who they are. Are you able to find this out from their website, or is that knowledge concealed. If that information is concealed then you don't know how they are qualified to write your CV. What is their background? Is it someone just jumping on the bandwagon to earn some extra income from home? Are they a secretarial service, or do they have a specialist knowledge of CV development? How long have they been in business? Are they operating from home or an office? Check their credentials or ask to see their CV or profile.

    Why? Because they are going to know everything about your job history and yourself, yet you may know nothing about them. It is important you know who the person is that you are sending your private information to. If they don’t give any idea of the person on the website, then give them a miss.

  2. Will you be meeting them face to face? Again, it is about your PRIVACY, particularly when personal identify theft is now becoming more prominent. No face, no name – who are you really dealing with on that internet site, no matter how professional it looks.

  3. Ask if they will be outsourcing your private information anywhere. Ask them if they are the ones typing and writing the CV. Many online CV services are getting you to fill in online forms to be only sent overseas for the typing. Plus you are doing half the work of the job you are paying for!

  4. Are they backyard operators? If they don’t have a genuine mortar and bricks store, then they are presumably backyard operators. Easy come easy go. Beware, particularly if paying money upfront first.

  5. What does the service offer? People have unique needs. A person may require a functional CV, a chronological CV, or a combination of both. You may wish your CV to have an added dimension, that is, to be more of a sales tool, marketing your capabilities, skills and potential. Check whether this service is offered or not.

  6. If a service says they offer a consultation service, check what the consultation entails, what is their process. It is really a consultation service or is it merely a preparation service?

    A CV consultation service
    will discuss the contents of your CV and what elements to add or not include. They will check its power of communication. That may involve all or ay of the following: a skill assessment, profile statement construction, a core competency analysis, checking your personal qualities and attributes. A consultation service that is free is usually a pre-interview to ascertain your requirements before booking in to offer advice and the process of writing the CV.

    A CV preparation service will just take basic details from you – personal data, employment record, qualifications and education, hobbies and interests, referees and references and set up a CV from this information. There is generally no sales pitch to your CV to help market your skills.

    Beware of CV services that charge for consulting and only edit your CV. That is not consulting, that is an editing job and should warrant a fee applicable to that particular service. (A CV consultation service will take longer and, therefore, cost more than an editing job.)

  7. Make sure the consultation is interactive. This means that you and the consultant discuss what the content of your CV is going to be – especially when considering your strengths and skills. If they send you away and make up details afterwards, the CV won’t have your ‘signature’ to it. Avoid CV services that produce CVs en masse (rather than individualised ones) – they will make your CV look equal to everyone else’s. It is a bit embarrassing when your CV is exactly the same as somebody else’s and you are going for the same interview. Check also that it is not full of clichés – phrases such as ‘excellent interpersonal skills’, for example. Also check if they are using preformatted statements. If they are, be aware that your CV is being churned out, and may read like somebody else’s.

  8. A CV consultation service, depending on the scope offered, should take between half an hour and two hours. Any more and the consultant could be padding out the hours, if they charge on an hourly rate. We charge on a package rate so you know what your spend is no matter the time factor involved. The best price structure is a package fee where you know you can spend unlimited time with a consultant to get the desired end product you want. A CV consultation service should not charge for time spent on deciding what sort of look you want your CV to have. That is focusing on paper selection and style: it is not consulting but offering advice, and that should be given freely.

    If the consultation only takes between 15 and 20 minutes it is more likely to be a preparation service and that should be reflected in the price charged. Shop around and ask them to be specific on what the consultation entails.

  9. Ask to see their range of samples and what each particular sample may cost. If they don’t show you samples then don’t deal with them. How do you know how your CV will be presented?

    A standard format will obviously be cheaper than a typographically designed one.

    When checking samples look at the quality of printing. Is it laser printed or inkjet printed? An inkjet printer will not produce such a crisp edge to the type as the laser printer; however, it should be cheaper, but it is not professional.

  10. Content is far more important than the cosmetics of your document. Watch for fancy fonts and graphics. Are they necessary? Do they achieve the effect you want or your prospective employer wants? One CV we saw produced by a curriculum vitae service looked more like an invitation or menu rather than a CV, much to the customer’s dissatisfaction.

    Keep you design in line with business protocol. Unless your job calls for a ‘designer’ look or you specify a certain style, don’t allow a consultant to pressure you into an overly fancy style. Keep a ‘vanilla’ look, crisp, clean and business like. Avoid brightly coloured stock. Yes, you will stand out, but it may be counter-productive and eliminate your change for an interview. A word on papers: select tones that match your requirements, industry and personality; for example, to achieve a conservative look try using grey bond paper. As most CVs are generally emailed now, a presentation CV can easily move you up the ‘accept and interview’ pile.

  11. A CV writing service will use many types of material and resources in constructing your CV and to ascertain your needs and requirements. This might include completion of worksheets, use of checklists and data collections of various analyses.

  12. Finally, check their advertising material. Is it full of superlatives? Your CV might be took, and thus destroy all credibility. Does it sell the sizzle as well as the steak? (Sizzle being the benefits the service offers you, the steak being the basic service). Do they use gimmicky tricks in their advertising? They might use gimmicky tricks in your document too.

General price ranges: CV editing $50 + GST: CV writing service $139 to $360 + GST. Check around, you generally get what you pay for.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

CV writing books by Paula Stenberg from New Zealand.
Please place your orders by emailing me direct.

Friday, September 23, 2011

CV Style
Welcome to CV Style's website (and virtual brochure). We are a New Zealand company with offices in Auckland CBD. With today's competitive job market, it is even more important that one creates a CV/résumé/curriculum vitae which will articulate what your distinctions are from other people. What is your X factor? And how can you put that X factor into your CV. We do not offer a templated online service which tends to equalise you with everyone else, but rather our consultations are face to face. This allows that necessary dialogue which is so critical to ensure that we can project you in the best possible way and with the most potential for your capabilities and abilities.

Monday, September 19, 2011

CV Style Profile

CV Style has been operating since 1996. Paula Stenberg saw a niche market in providing a boutique CV writing practice. This service provides the typographical design of CV documents, together with a structured behaviourally-anchored interview process that gleans from clients their competencies, skills, abilities and strengths.

CV Style produce a variety of CV products for their customers to choose from in relation to the customer's budget and needs. All of these have exclusive content design structures which form the basis of the company's intellectual property and are copyright protected.

In 1996, the founder (Paula Stenberg) wrote a book which was published by Tandem Press entitled "Write Your Own CV". This book documented one of her product lines and was on the Top 10 list, rated number 4 by the New Zealand Institute of Management in March 1997. Since that time the book is in its 2nd edition with the first being sold out. Republished 2001, 2002, 2004 and 2006. Now under the imprint of Random House.

CV Style's managing-director Paula Stenberg is a qualified journalist and certified careers practitioner, advertorial writer and author.

CV Style assures their clients of complete discretion and integrity, and conducts itself in a professional and ethical manner.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Top Ten Job Searching Tips

How many of these have you read? Here we go again, but this time I am concentrating on those matters which have emerged over the last two to three years, that we often neglected or failed to use in the past; mainly it's to do with new technology.
  1. Get a professional email address.
    Ditch your school one or pseudonmym name especially if it's like this: babyangel at (I can't put it in its usual format as the AI of the search engine Bing decides to make it my contact email address). Now is the time to professionalise yourself, use your proper name or professional name.
  2. Google yourself.
    Sounds egotistic doesn't it? But just in case you wrote something many years ago, and it raises its head to bite you in the foot, it is better to check what is out there on you in cyber space. As an example, I had written several poems years ago, and put them up on the web to enter an online competition; but little did I know they had changed the copyright date to last year which altered the whole meaning of the poem as it was time sensitive. Also you don't want to be saying things which you may regret later. Also while we are at it, blog your email address, telephone number and address as well, all these can leave a digital footprint exposing yourself to other information which you may wish to keep private.
  3. Add your email address to your CV or résumé.
    How many times do I see this omission?
  4. Start blogging.
    This is a free way of getting yourself known and building your profile. There are many blogger sites, including this one. The advantage of Blogger is that it is owned by Google and, therefore, your tagged information may appear in the rankings higher than others using different blog accounts.
  5. Register on online job sites.
    There are many:, www.TradeMe/, and also check out your local newspaper online listings.
  6. Use social networking sites to your advantage.
    Make a special professional Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, Bebo etc account specifically to your work environment, keep your personal social networks to your friends.
  7. Network.
    Join societies, organisations and clubs associated to your career. Check out the Yellow Pages and online directories to see what is available, then network with these people. They will know of new openings and people in the know who will help you.
  8. Specialize – Become a Subject Matter Expert.
    A sophisticated society has many specialist roles, therefore, the more specialised you are or can become, the more expertise you can provide, and more value to an employer's team. But don't forget to be a generalist in all areas connected with your career.
  9. Lead from your strengths.
    If you know what you are good at, or above average, or just brilliant at ... then move from that area first. If you are good at public speaking then use that as your primary form of accentuating your strengths.
  10. Mitigate your weaknesses.
    Similar to number nine. Play down your weaknesses. Avoid (especially in those first couple of meetings) those things that you are not so good at, or generally don't like doing. This could be as simple as handwriting (if you feel yours is too messy), or keyboarding (if you are too slow), or anything you feel may jeopardize your chances of a job.
Paula Stenberg 2009