The career path of an academic scholar is full of competition for the best roles and research opportunities available. With the innovations brought about through the Digital Era, an already competitive field has become significantly more so. To stand out from the crowd, an academic scholar must showcase themselves in the best possible light, using things like their curriculum vitae to demonstrate their knowledge and creativity.
Now, resumes and CVs look completely different than those of even five years ago. Through things like infographics, you can prove to any potential employer or funder that you know your field and you’re willing to stay relevant and up-to-date on the latest technology. Your CV can prove that you’re the best applicant for the job.
The Importance of Your CV
As Ph.D. graduates slowly are on the rise, the need to stand out from the competition increases, as well. When your specialty is in a generalized field, especially, it’s crucial that you learn how to market yourself as best as possible to set yourself apart from others who are desperate to gain a foothold in the best career paths of academia. Still, there are frequently going to be hundreds of other people vying for and applying for the same position you are interested in, meaning your CV has to make an impact to get noticed amongst the many others who have skills comparable to yours.
This is hard to do when you’re limited as to the space you are allowed to fill. Your entire scholastic history must be condensed to one page, two at the maximum. When your CV is lengthy and full of text, it’s most likely going to be ignored by busy hiring officials who have to narrow their search down to a handful of top candidates. You want your CV to look different from the rest while still quickly showcasing the relevant information you know the interviewers are looking for.
To do this today, it’s better to limit the text and make maximum use of graphic elements where you can.
Ways to Make Your CV Stand Out
Any potential employer for a coveted academic position is going to be weeding through dozens, or even hundreds, of resumes and CVs. To make yours stand out from all of the other applicants’ documents, consider these tips:
● Keep it short and simple. Include the information that would be pertinent to the potential employer. Even though academic CVs can be lengthy, it’s best to keep your part of it succinct. You can include attachments that the reader can reference, but your text part of the CV needs to stay limited to under two pages.
● Structure it accordingly, keeping the most important information near the top of your paper and working down to the least relevant. Your education and employment history, as well as any of your publications, should be easily seen.
● Write it as geared towards your audience. You may have to tweak your CV for each job you apply for, but make sure it contains information that your audience will be interested in. Get to know the institution you are applying at and what they value. Place the relevant information and skills that you have that match towards the top of your CV.
● Ask for feedback from someone who can help you. There is no magic format for CVs for every academic job, but someone in the field in which you’re applying should be able to critique your CV before you submit it.
● Use easy-on-the-eyes text and keep your margins at one-inch on all sides. Make sure you leave empty space along the sections.
Anywhere you can use a visual in place of text, consider this option carefully.
How to Add Infographics
Adding infographics on your CV is a powerful way to make a statement without saying anything in text. Use a program like Impactio to design eye-catching infographics that you can insert into your CV in areas such as:
● A professional portrait image of you
● Awards that you have received, using infographics to show the numbers that helped you win those awards
● Logos for your previous employers and educational institutions
● Flags to show any other languages you speak
● Graphic images that depict your skills
● A timeline to showcase your previous employment history
● Logos to link to your social media for your career pages
Make sure the colors you use in your CV are professional but vivid enough to stand out and grab the reader’s attention. Feel free to use cartoon images as long as they are still considered scholastic.