Your CV is often your first chance to make a good impression on a potential employer.

On average, 24 percent of hiring managers spend less than 30 seconds looking at a CV, so there are many considerations when crafting your CV for a tech job.

This is especially true when a large number of companies now use an application tracking system (ATS) to screen candidates’ CVs.

With this in mind, here are our top five things you should be avoiding on your CV to make you stand out in this competitive industry where vacancies have grown 191 percent since 2020.

Not targeting your CV

Gone are the days of the “One CV fits all”. Today, your CV needs to be tailored to the role and employer you are looking to join.

Familiarise yourself with the job description and person specification to identify what essential and desirable criteria they are looking for, and how you qualify to succeed in this position.

You many have not worked for a tech company before, but have held down a tech role in a well-known financial or retail organisation before – so don’t be afraid to name-drop.

Overlooking your skills section

Then you need to demonstrate that you have desired skills and transferable skills needed for this role.

According to experts, 89 percent of recruiters say it is a crucial section to have in your CV – particularly if you applying for a tech role.

Sought-after skills in tech often include: oral and written communication, adaptability, programming languages, and excellent people skills.

Not quantifying results

Quantifying your achievements, especially in the tech industry, is essential – and can boost your CV attractiveness by 40 per cent.

What was your role on previous projects? What did you build and how (cite programming languages, software or platform names)? How did your technical expertise and soft skills enable you to do so? Were you working in a team or alone? If you were part of a team, what was your exact role and did you step in to perform additional duties?

Using irrelevant terminology

There is a fine balance between being too general and going overboard.

While it is essential that you describe your technical expertise, avoid using industry buzzwords or irrelevant language, as these won’t be picked up by the ATS and might put the recruiter/employer off.

Include keywords such as the names of any software or technical processes used on previous projects, as well as any developments that you have been involved in.

Badly formatted CV

CVs nowadays are likely to be viewed on screen before they are printed off, so ensure you format your CV so that it is easy to read on a screen.

Favour simple fonts such as 11-point Calibri or 11-point Arial. Avoid boxes or excessive amounts of colours, so a recruiter’s attention is not distracted from your content.

If you have to upload your CV, make sure it’s the PDF version.


If you are looking for a new challenge or are looking for a tech role that matches what you are looking for, speak to one of our experts today.