What the Recruitment Process looks likeApril 4, 2019
10 simple tips to get a potential employer interested
Clarity: Be concise, the chances are that anyone looking at
your CV has already looked at, or is about to look at, dozens of others so why
should your CV stand out? People agree and disagree with a number of points
about a CV and what format it should take, but clarity and layout are definite
“must have” points no matter who you speak to. All a recruiter has time to see
- Who you are -name and contact details
- Work experience – Always start with
current role (Head Chef/Sous Chef, Senior Chef de Partie), employer (if you
have progressed while with the same employer list each role separately and the
time you were in each)
- Key tasks achievements – For each role
list a few of the key tasks and achievements while in this role, this is a
great chance to impress.
- Why did you leave each role – If possible,
briefly explain a move from one employer to the next (eg outgrew role,
headhunted by another restaurant, opportunity to progress my career, wanted to
developed new culinary skills, make it a positive)
- Education and Training – Along with
career progression any training or courses achieved along the way (HACCP, First
AID, Third Level training, IT skills) can be added at the end of the CV. It
will always impress a potential recruiter that you have continued to improve
and develop your skills along the way and the skills don’t always have to be
culinary (eg completed a computer course). How you did in school is not really
that important to a restaurant/hotel unless it was in a culinary school. Do
list the school you attended if you have space but if it crowds the CV you
probably have enough in already to interest a potential employer.
- Hobbies and interests – These are not
really that important but help an employer see that you have a life outside
work and can give them something to talk to you about in an interview. If it is
not really an interest to you don’t put it in your CV to impress as you will
get caught out. If you are not a “avid reader” don’t say you are!
- References – There is no harm in
including a couple of previous chefs you worked with or mentors who will give
you a good reference. The catering world is small and everyone knows everyone
so instead of a potential employer calling someone who will just say “yeah,
Mark was fine” put down someone who will say “yeah, Mark was great!”
- Pictures – They really are better than words!
if you have a couple of dishes you are proud of and show off your skills why
not include a picture of them? They really make you stand out and show off your
skills, they also can be a great talking point for an interview. If you have
not cooked it don’t include it as you will definitely be asked to go into the
detail at some point.
- Layout – Crisp, clear and concise. Two
pages is a maximum. If you have plenty of roles in the past just highlight the last
four or five depending on how the two pages are filling out, and list the
remaining roles in bullet points saying where/when and what position. Really a
potential employer just wants to see your current level and your progression.
If you are a Head Chef they can assume you have progressed naturally so only
need your last 4-5 roles in detail.
- Personality – This may seem an odd thing
to say, but try to get a bit of your personality into your CV. You can do this
by avoiding some of the standard terms used to describe yourself such as “hard
working”, “enthusiastic”, instead how about “keen learner”, “high achiever” or
“like to test my skills”
Finally, it is really important to realise that a CV is the
first impression that a potential recruiter has of you. As I said at the
beginning there is a strong chance that they are sitting at a desk with 20
other CV’s and a limited attention span to select the best ones. Strive to
stand out but not stick out if that makes sense. It is important to put as much
thought as you can into your CV as that is your one chance to get called for
interview. Once in the interview you can sell yourself with your confidence and
enthusiasm, try to reflect this in your CV.
About the Author – Mark MacMahon heads up the Hospitality Division in Gilligan Black and has 30 years industry experience. If you need advice on how to present yourself to get your dream job, or you are looking to hire talent for your kitchen reach out to Mark on email@example.com or give him a call on 01 7999100