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All our lives we have been taught how to write a CV, from primary all through secondary and even in university. But all that advice will not work if you do not tailor your CV to fit the current job market. How do you write a CV in 2017 then? What should your CV contain? What makes for a good CV in 2017?

A CV can be one page and still sell you to a potential employer and it can be five pages and not work. The bottom line is that, if you put the relevant information in your CV, it will stand out. Here is how you write a standard CV in 2017.

Must Read: 4 Sections You Should Remove From Your CV To Start Getting Interviews

How To Write A CV That Stands Out 

1. Contact details

At the very top should be your contact details. Some people will have a personal details section where they include things like name, mobile number, email address, marital status, gender, date of birth, nationality etc as they were taught in school.

However in a standard CV in 2017, you don’t need all that. Just have a contact section at the very top where you include your name, mobile number and email address.
For instance, it should look something like this;

“Lilian Wamaitha

2. Profile summary or career objective

Placed right after the contacts, a career objective or profile summary is a detailed paragraph explaining who you are and why you are looking for that job as well as your future aspirations for your career. This section summaries your entire CV and gives the recruiter a sneak peek view on who you are as a person.

An example of a career objective is;

“A result oriented community development practitioner experienced in providing administrative support to complete projects. I am knowledgeable in: disseminating project information to project stakeholders, monitoring the progress of projects, developing and maintaining project deliverables and gathering and inputting data into databases. More so, I have been involved with HIV/Aids initiatives, community mobilization, monitoring and evaluation, field research, capacity building as well as planning and implementing community based projects. I am looking for a position in a challenging environment that strives for organizational and personal development.”

3. Educational Qualifications

In this section, you list all your academic qualifications beginning with the most recent. This section should look something lie;

“Bachelor of Arts in Community Development (Second Class Honours (Upper Division) – Egerton University; 2013-2016
Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (B plus) – Kaniana Secondary; 2009-2012”

4. Work Experience

List your work experience places you have worked and positions held starting with the most recent just like in the educational section.

One thing about this section is that you should ensure you list all the work experience that is related to the job you are applying for.

If you have held so many positions in the past that are all relevant to the job at hand, this section should come before the education section.

5. Trainings, Workshops Attended

If you have attended any relevant trainings or workshops in the past, this could be the section to show off. For instance. If you are a human resource manager, you may have attended several trainings to do with HR so you will add them in this section.

Just ensure that whatever you add in this section will serve to add to your experience in the job you are applying for.

6. Hobbies

The hobbies section is supposed to add flavor to what you have already stated in your work experience. The hobbies should therefore be related to you career or the job you are applying for. Watching movies and hanging out with friends are not good hobbies to have in your CV.

But if you are a communications practitioner for instance, who has already stated that they have worked in several places, you may add blogging as one of your hobbies because it is related to your career, that is if you have a blog.

7. Referees

Finally, the final piece of the puzzle. Choose referees that you have worked with in either supervisory or managerial level and people who can be in a position to speak on your behalf. Always have a maximum of three referees and it should be professional ones.

If you are a recent graduate, your dean of student or one of your lecturers could act as your referee.

Related: 4 Things To Always Consider While Naming Your Referees

Above are the seven sections that your CV should have. If you are not confident about whether your CV meets this criteria, you could have it reviewed for free by one of our professional CV writer. Just email the CV to and we will get back to you.

Lilian is a Communications & Digital Marketing Officer at Career Point Kenya. For queries and comments, email

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