The “dos” and “don’ts” of drafting a CV in Canadian style.
This isn’t another post encouraging you to spell-check your resume—but do do so. We’ll go over some not-so-obvious techniques for getting your foot in the door to your ideal career in Canada.
The CV is simply one stage in the process of obtaining a job in Canada—and it isn’t even the first. Before you sit down to type out your professional experience, conduct some research on the Canadian job market and choose the firms to which you want to apply. The Canadian government website has various resources that might assist you in your job hunt.
In this article, we’ll focus on how to improve your CV for Canadian employers. Remember that employers have their own preferences, and each industry has its own set of best practices. We hope that this article has given you a good understanding of what you can and cannot include on a Canadian resume
5 Resume Writing Mistakes in Canada
- If you don’t want to include a picture, leave it out.
Unless you’re an actress or model, you don’t need to include a photograph with your CV in Canada, unlike in several other nations. In general, you only need to include material on your CV that is pertinent to the job description.
- Keep your sharing to a minimum.
The majority of your personal information does not need to be included on your resume. The company simply requires your name and contact information at this point. They don’t need to know your age, nationality, ethnicity, religion, marital status, or family background. Indeed, under Canadian human rights regulations, asking these questions in an interview might be unlawful.
Furthermore, your CV is not the place to reveal your Social Security Number (SIN). Employers do not require this information until you have been hired for the position. Your Social Security card is a private document that you should only reveal when legally compelled.
All you need to put on your CV is your relevant abilities and expertise, as well as basic contact information such as your name, phone number, and email address. A mailing address isn’t always required, especially if you’re looking for work in another city. You may want to add it if you want to show that you are within commuting distance of your place of employment, but most job searchers feel that it takes up valuable page space.
- Don’t go overboard with your writing.
One page is optimal in terms of length, but two is great as well.
You want the individual examining your application to see just your finest, most relevant, and most recent experience. If you are just starting out in your profession and do not have a lot of experience, you might mention elements that are less relevant to the job description.
In general, keep your resume concise and to the point. You want it to be “skimmable.” Recruiters should be able to obtain an impression of your experience without having to read a novel.
- Include no references.
If your employer wants references, they will request them. It’s a good idea to let your reference know you’re naming them and give them your contact information. Speaking with your reference ahead of time also allows you to judge whether or not this individual will truly offer you a wonderful evaluation.
- Don’t use an inappropriate email address.
Recruiters are aware of these details, and they may judge you based on whatever email address you thought was amusing in high school. Using an email address that contains your name raises no red flags.
5 Do’s of Canadian Resume Writing
- Do tailor your application to the job posting.
It takes longer, but you will often get better results if you tailor each resume to the position you are looking for rather than the “spray and pray” method of sending out a bunch of generic resumes.
Not sure how to present your experience? Which skills should I include and which should I leave out? Are you undecided about a word?
Examine the job advertisement. This is your first indication of what the recruiter is searching for and the language they like in your application.
The job qualifications will be listed first, followed by the nice-to-haves. Include your required talents at the top of the first page of your resume, followed by your “assets.”
- Do keep track of your accomplishments.
If possible, try to quantify your accomplishments with numbers. For example, if you were a manager, state how many employees you were in charge of. How many things did you sell if you worked in sales? How much profit did you make each month?
A general statement will not emphasize your talents as well as listing your particular successes in statistics that an employer can grasp. Saying you have a “excellent work ethic” is meaningless. Demonstrating that you increased traffic to your company’s website by 20% in a year, for example, demonstrates to a recruiter that you know what you’re doing.
- Do not write in the third person.
Write in the third person, thus no “I,” “me,” or “mine.” Keep your sentences short and to the point.
Include the name and location of your employer, as well as a few of your tasks, in your job experience. Include the number of years you worked for the firm, or the number of months if you worked for less than a year. There is no need to explain work gaps on the résumé. If the recruiter even asks, it will be brought up during the interview.
List the school, program, certification, and dates for your schooling. You can add your GPA depending on the position you’re looking for, but it’s typically not essential. Your awards can be included here or in a separate “awards” section.
- Include any unpaid employment experience.
You can mention volunteer experience as long as it prepares you for the responsibilities you would be performing.
Include a cover letter if you are applying for a job.
Even if they don’t ask for it, and even if they ignore it and go directly to your CV, it’s always a good idea to include a cover letter.
A cover letter is intended to supplement the resume and demonstrate to the recruiter why you are the greatest fit for their job position.
We could create a separate essay about cover letters if we wanted to, and we most likely will. However, we will provide you a rough notion of how to create a cover letter in this section.
Your cover letter should include the company’s contact information as well as your own. It should not be more than a couple of paragraphs long and should not fill up the entire page.
You are free to write in the first person here. Your objective is to make contact with the recruiter. Use their name only if you are certain you have the right name of the person examining your application. If you know their name, use it, but keep in mind that a prefix is frequently unnecessary. Starting a letter with “Sir” or “Madame” is typically incorrect these days, unless you know for sure that the recruiter receiving your letter favors it.
The first paragraph should explain yourself and your motivation for applying for this position. Make a note of the position for which you are applying. In the next lines, you’ll want to show why you’re the greatest candidate for the job by referencing your past relevant experience. You can go above and beyond by demonstrating how your involvement will solve their problems and make their lives easier.
Extra hints for your Canadian job search
You face greater challenges than the ordinary Canadian-born job seeker; yet, there are immigrant support programs and employment services available to assist you on your path. Immigration Canada includes a list of free services on their website, however this is far from a full list of everything available. You may also look at your province’s or territory’s websites, or look for job services in your city.
Ask as many individuals as you can whether they have any connections or know of any employment vacancies. According to Linked-In, networking accounts for at least 85 percent of all job searches. If you live in Canada and don’t know many people, look for industry networking events in your region, which may be located online through event services such as Eventbrite or on social media sites such as Facebook events or groups.
Also, even if you believe you are unqualified for a position, apply nonetheless. In the best-case scenario, you obtain the job and learn to become the candidate that they are seeking for; in the worst-case scenario, you don’t get the job. You have absolutely nothing to lose and everything to gain.