CV Advice

PA & EA Careers

A CV needs to be easy to read and understand. Keep it concise, relevant and to a maximum of two A4 pages. Less is more and we advise to keep the format simple, using a traditional font i.e. Arial, size 10-11 and in black. Do explain all gaps in employment and make sure all dates are correct and do not embellish the truth. An experienced interviewer will easily be able to spot any discrepancies.

Make sure the format is consistent all the way through and double-check there are no spelling and grammatical errors, you will be surprised how many typos even the most professional PAs and Executive Assistants forget to correct.

When you are looking for your perfect PA or Executive Assistant role your CV must provide an accurate and professional description of your education, work experience and skill set. There are many different formats for a CV but a successful one which will catch an employer’s eye is essential when looking for the first or next step of your PA career.

A good structure for your CV is key and can be added to as your PA career progresses. Ideally, a CV should summarise your PA work history and include your most recent or current role first.

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Candidate Advice

Firstly, your CV should have all of your personal details on it – name, address, contact number and email address, so companies can quickly see how to contact you and see your location.

Personal statements should come next and are a very good way to make your CV stand out. This should include a brief overview of your skills, experience and what you are looking for in your next PA role. Don’t make it too chatty and make it relevant to the type of PA roles that you are applying for, highlighting your skills such as time management, being a good team player, attention to detail and computer skills. Try to keep this section to below 150 words.

Education should follow your work history, stating the most recent and highest level first. For example, university name, subject and grade followed by the name of the school or college and any qualifications gained. Try to avoid listing every qualification you have ever received if they are not relevant to your Personal Assistant job search. However, please include any special achievements during this time. For example, School Captain & sporting achievements that show leadership and team playing skills.

Your PA work experience is the most important section of your CV and must be listed one role at a time. Employers often quickly scan CVs and are look for relevant company names and industry sectors, job titles and length of service within each company. 'Hoppy' CVs don't create a good first impression, so if you have worked in several roles within one company it is a good idea to list each job title under the one company name.

Once again make sure that the most valuable experience needed to obtain that all-important new PA role is prioritised. If you are at the early stages of your career, think of any additional transferable skills that you may have acquired along the way whilst working in your gap year or voluntary overseas projects such as teamwork or client-facing skills.

Hobbies and interests come at the end of your CV but are not necessary. If you have any particular interests that relate to the companies that you would like to work for then it can be to your advantage to put them in here, however, they can become a talking point at the end of the interview so they need to be something you actually do.

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