My financial career Preparing your CV

How do you ensure your CV is added to the 'I want to meet this person' pile, rather than thrown away with no chances of being considered?

Step 1

Firstly, you will need to get the basics right.

  • Personal and contact information

  • Education and qualifications

  • Work history and/or experience

  • Relevant skills to the job in question

  • Interests, achievements, hobbies

  • References (ask permission first).

Step 2

Secondly, presentation is key. A successful CV is always carefully and clearly presented. These days people mostly apply for jobs directly with employers online or upload their CV onto recruitment websites to help them get noticed.

However if you ever do need to put your CV/application in the mail, make sure the CV is never crumpled or folded.

Step 3

Thirdly, don’t give up! If at first you don’t get a job you’re interested in, keep trying. Lots of young people will be looking for roles at the same time as you, so competition for jobs can be intense. Don’t get disheartened if you aren’t successful on your first attempt.

Top tips for preparing your CV

No more than two pages of A4

Your CV is your chance to show you tick the right boxes for the role you want. What you need to remember is that employers receive lots of CV's all the time so it is unlikely they'll read each one cover to cover. Keep yours short and make sure you include all your skills that are relevant to the role.

Understand the job description

Read the details from start to finish. It might be helpful if you take notes and create bullet points, highlighting everything you can do and any bits you can’t. For the areas where you are lacking, try to adapt the skills you do have. For example, it might be that the job requires some sales experience, so be sure to mention any retail work you have undertaken during your studies. It will help you demonstrate key skills, and show how they are relevant to the role.

Tailor the CV to the role

There is no such thing as a generic CV. Every CV you send to a potential employer should be tailored to that role, highlighting your relevant skills.

Making the most of your skills

Don’t forget to mention your key skills that can help you to stand out from the crowd. It could be that you have excellent communication or computer skills, speak a foreign language or are excellent at problem solving.

Making the most of your interests

Highlight the things that show off other skills you have gained which could be relevant to the role. For example, where you’ve taken positions of responsibility, worked in a team or taken initiative.


Employers will usually require two references. Those should be from someone who has employed you in the past and can vouch for your skills and experience. If you have never worked before, use your teacher or tutor as a referee.

Routes into financial services

There are several routes into the industry, from school-leaver schemes and apprenticeships to graduate training schemes and internships.

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A-Z job profiles

Get an idea of possibilities and career options by viewing common roles in financial services.

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Financial services sectors

Learn more about the different sectors in the financial services.

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My financial career

Take me back to the my financial career page. Find information about different sectors, jobs and routes into financial services.

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