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How to Write a Winning CV for the Trades

How to Write a Winning CV for the Trades

Maybe you’ve been applying to jobs for weeks now –perhaps months? You may have been stretched too thin to give your CV the love it needs. Maybe you’ve applied for a few jobs and haven’t heard back? Whatever the case is we hope the tips below and the “CV template for the trades” provided gives you some ideas and saves you time on writing a winning CV for the trade position you’re seeking.

Tip #1: Ensure you have correct spelling and grammar.

Hiring managers and recruiters don’t just scrutinise applicants’ CV for their qualifications they are also looking for correct spelling, grammar and punctuation. One minor misspelling can lead your CV to the bin no matter how qualified you are for the position.

To ensure your spelling and grammar are perfect, download the free version of Grammarly. Grammarly can be downloaded to any laptop or desktop computer and you can add Grammarly’s keyboard to iPhone or Android. Underlying all of Grammarly’s products is a sophisticated artificial intelligence system built to analyse sentences written in English.Their AI analyses each sentence and looks for ways to improve it, whether it’s correcting a verb tense, suggesting a stronger synonym, or offering a clearer sentence structure. All you need to use Grammarly is a connection to the internet!

Tip #2: Organised and neat formatting.

Ensure that each section of your CV is neatly organised and clearly defined by borders or headers for each particular section. Using a template will save you time and you won’t have to worry about the formatting as it’s all done for you. Download our free “CV template for the trades” or download the free version of Canva and search the many resume templates that they have to offer. However, you decide to organise the sections of your CV, be sure to keep each section uniformed.

Tip #3: Make your resume visually appealing.

  • Make your CV look aesthetically pleasing by adding some colour, icons for your email and telephone contact information, and be strategic with Bold, CAPS, and italics
  • Name and job title should stand out among everything else –consider formatting these areas to Bold.
  • Be consistent with how you use these styles –if one job title is Boldthen the remaining job titles must be bold too.

Tip #4: Be concise.

  • Your CV shouldn’t be any longer than 2 pages
  • Use bullet points to separate each line item that describes what you did at each job

Tip #5: Tailor your CV for each job.

While it may be easier to copy and paste your CV information for multiple jobs this tactic won’t exactly give the recruiter what they are looking for. Grab specific language used in the job advert and weave it into your CV.

Tip #6: Save your CV document using the name and position you’ve applied for.

If you have applied for multiple jobs be sure to save a copy of your CV with the name of the company and the position you applied for. For example, when you hit “save as” you may title your CV file like this: CV_Plumbtec_Pipefitter. When a recruiter and or hiring manager calls to speak about the position you’ve applied for, you’ll be able to quickly reference the saved file. This tip will help you avoid saying, “I’ve applied to so many positions, what company are you calling from again?”

Tip #7: Ensure you have the right qualifications for the job at hand.

The purpose of a CV should be to show potential employers that you have the required work experience, skills and academic qualifications to fulfil the job requirements. For example, for a trade position, each candidate is required to pass the CSCS test and hold a valid CSCS card. If you need a CSCS card or need to renew yours for free, enrol in our “Access to Construction Course” by messaging us on Facebook to obtain this qualification.


Get your CV right from the outset, and you may well find a job more quickly. Your CV is your chance to make a great first impression and secure yourself an interview, so implement these tips and then upload your CV to apply for your next trades job.

Still not sure what you’re looking for?

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