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4.3 Benefits of a skills-based CV

A skills-based or functional CV is a CV that highlights your skills rather than where you got them from. This type of CV can be particularly useful if you are a student or new graduate who doesn’t have much experience to share in your applications, which means your emphasis should be on highlighting your existing skills and strengths and demonstrating your potential.

Equally, if you are a career changer with significant experience but in an unrelated industry, your relevant skills risk getting lost in a long list of work roles that may not mean anything to the employer reading your application. In this case, a skills-based CV might also be appropriate. Read this example of a skills-based CV [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)]   to see what you should include.

When you highlight your key skills, make sure you choose skills that you know the employer will be interested in. In the example, Madeleine is looking for marketing experience, so it makes sense to highlight skills that are important in a marketing context.

Once you have impressed a potential employer on paper, they will usually want to meet with you, and you’ll explore face-to-face interactions further in Week 5.