We’ll be honest - the “perfect” Cyber CV doesn’t exist. There’s certainly a framework that everybody should follow, but there’s lots of room for flexibility!
Click here for some:
5 Top Tips for Making a Successful Cyber CV
No recruiter wants to look at the same CV over and over again, struggling to differentiate between candidates. We like to see spirit, creativity, and passion.
It can be hard to put your best foot forward within the standard expectations (such as summarising your life story within 1-2 pages) but, with these tips, it’ll be much easier.
1. Pay Attention to Detail
There are lots of little things that can send a Cyber CV to the bottom of the pile, like spelling mistakes and background inconsistencies… detail is also one of them. If a recruiter doesn’t feel like they’ve had a sufficient glimpse into your life, they might not feel enticed to find out more. To level up your job application and get more attention, don’t be afraid to highlight all the great things about yourself as well as your achievements.
You’ll see in a number of our examples, that the applicants have listed a host of their achievements as part of their experiences, such as:
‘Managed and delivered training for a global team’
‘Advised the global head of security operations on issues and provided solutions aligned with the strategy’
2. Be Clear
A CV that is difficult to decipher will see no success - that also goes for CVs that are poorly designed or ‘messy’. To this end, you must dedicate some time to adding structure to your Cyber CV and making sure the layout is really clear. In all of the examples we’ve provided, there are clear sections for different categories. It sounds simple, but clearly labelling and dividing each section will enable hiring managers to extract the information they need at a glance.
3. Only Share Relevant Information
Do you want to know the truth? We don’t need to know about where you went to Primary School, or where you worked when you were sixteen (...unless it was at an IT firm). Your Cyber CV should include relevant information only, excluding all the ‘ramble’ that many candidates use to bulk up their resume. We appreciate that you might have worked in a retail position that taught you a lot but, unless the skills you learned there are pertinent to your career in cyber, it doesn’t need to be included.
Depending on the position you are applying for, hiring managers in cyber may expect to see experience such as:
How you have implemented or maintained effective measures against cyber attacks
How you have developed your knowledge of information security systems and standards
What your experience in operating and maintaining security tools such as firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and antivirus software looks like
Of course, this is dependent on the role you are aiming for, but tailoring your experiences to the job you want (where possible) is always a good idea. In our example from ‘Joe Heyo’,you’ll see that Joe included one of their previous experiences with a caveat that it was a role in a different field.
4. Be True to Yourself
At its core, a Cyber CV needs to detail your work experience, background, and education. The way you present this information, though, is completely up to you. Bullet points? Paragraphs? Single Sentences? It doesn’t matter, as long as you stay true to yourself! You’ll see that all of our examples, whilst highlighting key information, follow similar patterns yet the styles differ - this is a perfect example of how you can incorporate your take on your CV whilst ensuring all of the main points are covered.
Creating a CV that is an accurate representation of yourself is the best thing anyone can do for their job search.
5. Have Fun With It
Just like you’re a unique individual (who would leave to be treated as one), so is the recruiter viewing your CV. What works best for some people won’t work at all for others, so you don’t expect to please everyone. It’s just not possible. Get creative with your Cyber CV, have fun making it, and don’t get too bogged down by the do’s and don’ts. This next stage of your life is meant to be exciting!
What Does a “Good” Cyber CV Look Like?
We’re not the only ones who think the rules are a little restrictive.
“The internet is littered with dozens of rules and suggestions, often conflicting and confusing in nature. Things like keeping it below two pages; using precise metrics; making it AI-parser friendly; and telling a story of your experience and history.
Personally, I don’t believe there is one standard of “good”.
Every hiring manager will prefer a different style and, while certain industries – like academia – generally like long and verbose records, other industries – like accountancies – like a checklist of “can” and “cannot” (give me the latter any day of the week!).”
He even has a mission to fulfill– issuing a challenge for anyone in a leadership position within the UK’s cyber industry.
I’ve [come up with] the idea that cybersecurity leaders should take a moment to share their CVs for two reasons. First, to understand what would be consistent across the board in our view of what “good” looks like and, second, as an exercise in humility; we get to judge applicant CVs every day, it’s only fair you get a chance to judge ours too.”
Choose Forward Role for Your Job Search
At Forward Role, we connect candidates with exciting and progressive job opportunities that’ll see them to the top of their careers. Registerto discuss your CV with our experts and chat about your next career steps.
Whether you are an experienced Cyber professional searching for your next challenge or a recent graduate who is just starting out, we would love to hear from you!
Contact us today.