When it comes to CVs for television, they are a bit different from other industries so it’s a good idea to make sure yours isn’t standing out for the wrong reasons. Your CV is often the first opportunity you get to make an impression with a potential employer so hopefully, these tips below will help you make sure that your first opportunity to make an impression …isn’t your last.
1. Name It Right
Production managers and production companies receive so many CVs. Make your CV searchable and easy to identify by labelling it “CV – NAME – YOUR JOB TITLE”.
2. Title It
Similar to the name of your CV, you should identify what you do/what roles you’re applying for in the headline at the top of your CV. It’s important this title matches your professional experience and is realistic in terms of the roles you are qualified to take on.
3. Make It Easy To Find Your Contact Details
Don’t bury your contact details – make sure they are easy to see on your CV. It’s also worth including a simple footer on your emails with your phone number as well. While we’re on the topic of emails, your email address should be professional i.e. firstname.lastname@example.org or something along those lines.
4. State Your Location
Australia is a big country and production managers will want to know where you’re based and where you’re available for work so make sure you include this on your CV. It’s best just to list your city though, no need to include your whole address for privacy reasons.
5. Be Clear & Concise
The best way to make your CV clear is to use headings and bullet points – avoid using paragraphs. Make it easy to be skim read so that, within a few seconds of picking it up, someone can have a good idea of what you have to offer.
6. Highlight Your Relevant Skills and Training
Even with limited TV experience, you probably have lots of skills and experience that are valuable to a production, so don’t forget to include these on your CV. As a runner, you will most likely be doing a lot of driving, so having driver’s license is probably the first thing a production manager will be looking out for when they are hiring. You should also list other achievements and certifications like having a first aide certificate, current working with children check, fluency in foreign languages etc.
7. Tailor It
It’s boring but it’s worth it. Put the effort in to tailor your CV to the role you’re applying for. It doesn’t mean that you have to completely rewrite your CV for every role but making a few amends to highlight your skills applicable to the specific role and updating your references is a good idea.
8. Keep it to 1-2 pages
There is no reason why your CV should be any more than two pages (especially if you’re applying for entry level roles). Any more than two pages probably won’t be read.
9. Spell & Grammar Check
It’s obvious but there are so many people who don’t do it! Proofread your CV before you send it and if spelling and grammar isn’t a strong point for you then get someone else to proof it for you.
10. Make it Look Good
Some people would disagree with this – in fact, I’ve seen people advise the exact opposite BUT I think that giving your CV a bit of personality rather than just a stock standard black and white CV, is the way to go. I’m not saying go crazy with WordArt but a nice design and colour scheme is a way you can make your CV stand out from the rest. Make sure it’s still in an easy to read format and avoid colours that are hard on the eyes. To be realistic, experience is always going to trump a flashy CV but it doesn’t hurt to show you take pride in your work.
BONUS TIP: Whatever you do…don’t include a head shot on your CV.
Considering a career in TV but don’t know where to start? Check out my post 10 Tips For Getting Your First Job In TV – Part 1 (the link to Part 2 is listed at the bottom of the page).
Want to stay ahead of the game in TV? Find out how in my post The Easiest Way to Stay a Step Ahead When Applying for Entry-Level TV Jobs