Relevant Skills

Tuesday, July 28th, 2009 - CV Help, CV Tips, how to make a cv, How to Write a CV, Job Application, job search, Professional CV

Relevant Skills

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Maria, a Pharmacology Finance Analyst, asks: I recently had an interview for a business analyst position in a PMO. I mentioned that I had been a teacher something not on my CV, and the PMO director suggested I should put it on my CV, because he thought it was valuable experience, but he said other people might disagree and think it should be omitted. I have had it on my resume until recently, when I removed it at the advice of a recruiter. What do you think?

In answer:
You will find that opinion on this issue will vary. So, why is that? Here are my thoughts as a recruiter and CV writer:

  • Relevancy: only include it if it is relevant to that job as a transferable/relevant skill
  • Positive: If you are expected to communicate to others, and specifically get them to apply your research, then its a positive. I would hope you would have updated your basic presentation skills in 25years, and teaching is not business presentation
  • Negative: it is a 25+ year old skill, and you then have to explain why you left teaching. This exercise may well remove the benefit of the transferable skill, eg: I left teaching because I hated it, specifically communicating to uninspired people

Job application

Any skill which you place in a CV must be relevant to the job being applied for. Secondly, think like an HR professional: any skill used and applied in the last 3years is relevant, and the last 5years re-trainable in. Beyond that and its not a skill, more of a career history.

Hence, the variance in opinion you receive will be based on:

  1. The job being applied for
  2. The resultant relevancy of the skill
  3. The view of being able to overcome any negatives of inclusion

Use that as your guide and you should know whether to include it or not.

Good Luck!


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