As with most countries, Australia has its own specific work culture and set of expectations for CVs. When applying for a job in Australia, it is important to ensure that your CV adheres to Australian CV requirements and is tailored to impress Australian recruiters and employers.
Australia CV Length: For experienced professionals, a three or four page resume is expected in Australia. If you are recently graduated or new to the workforce, two pages is sufficient, but as soon as your work history is robust enough for three to four pages, your resume should expand accordingly.
Australia CV Terminology: The terms ‘resume’ and ‘CV’ are used synonymously in Australia - they refer to the same document. The word ‘resume’ is used more commonly, however, so if in doubt, use that one.
Australia CV Language: When writing your resume, be sure to use correct Australian English - don’t forget those extra u’s, as in ‘colour’ and ‘labour’ (as opposed to the American spellings ‘color’ and ‘labor’).
Australia CV Photo: As a rule of thumb, it is best not to include a photo in your Australian CV. If you intend to host your resume online, or if you are in a creative industry where visuals are highly valued, then an image may be an asset. Be sure to do your research, however - if the company you are applying to isn’t expecting a photo, it can hurt your chances. As Australian HR and recruitment consultant Karalyn Brown says, “When you put your photo on your resume you are inviting a recruiter with their own set of prejudices, to consider how you look along with what you may have achieved.”
Australia CV Personal Information: The only personal information required for an Australian resume is your contact information - your name, address, phone number, mobile number and email address (which should be some variation of your name - keep it professional: firstname.lastname@example.org or something similar). Any other personal information such as age, marital status, and number of children is not relevant to your experience or job performance and should not be included.
Australia CV Objective: It is recommended, though not mandatory, that you include a Career Objective at the top of your resume. This can also be called a Career Profile or Summary. Your objective serves as a short introduction to you and to your resume and should give the hiring manager a reason to continue reading. According to Karalyn Brown, “A resume without a career objective is like a movie without a title, or a trailer.” Your objective should be brief - three to five lines - and should give a very clear description of the experience you are bringing to the position, and what your goals and ambitions are for the role you are applying to.
Australia CV Work Experience: Display your work experience in reverse-chronological order, with your most recent position at the top. Each entry should include the beginning and end date of your tenure, and be sure to account for gaps in your employment. Give details about your work experience, including your responsibilities and achievements in each role. Use quantifiable information wherever possible, and use powerful verbs like ‘delivered’, ‘trained’, and ‘promoted’.
Australian CV Education: List your relevant degrees and diplomas in reverse-chronological order, including dates. Include the name of the institution, your major, minor, and specialization, as well as any significant awards you may have received.
If you have information that you would like to display that was not covered by the sections above, you can include them in a separate section on your resume. Other sections include:
Skills: It is common to include a simple list of skills kept separate from your work history. This is to provide a quick, at-a-glance look at what you excel at, without delving into your experience too much.
Volunteer Experience: Volunteering experience should be noted on your resume. If you prefer, you can include volunteer experience in your Work History section, but be sure to note when a role is a volunteer position. Languages: If you are fluent in multiple languages, noting them may be an asset.
References: A simple ‘References available on request’ note will do here. It is not necessary to provide references until requested to by an employer or recruiter.
A well written and correctly formatted resume is integral to your job search. When applying for positions in Australia, it is important to tailor your resume to suit Australian CV requirements and expectations. Don’t let a poor resume stand between you and a great career in Australia!