Developer CV Guide – 3 Small Tips.

Darwin Recruitment

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So, you’re a developer that’s now looking for their next role, be it permanent or contract. This short read is focused around improving the success rate in your applications by making some small, outside-of-the-box tweaks on your CV that you may have not even thought of.

As a technical recruiter – I can firsthand say that I flick through at least 20+ newly active CVs on a daily basis, I’m fortunate to be in a position where I converse with technical hiring managers day-by-day, understanding their thought processes and ultimately what they look out for when they themselves are scanning through a high volume of CVs and applications sent to them.

This gives me a wider insight into what makes a CV most appealing to businesses, and what can set aside one CV from the other – even if behind the lines the actual individuals themselves are just as competent as each other.

So let’s get started with some ideas that I would point out.

1. Summary of your workflow

If I could tell you firsthand how many CVs I see that mostly focus on the buzzwords, the methodology, and not much else. Ultimately a key thing for hiring managers is firstly understanding if you are a fit technically speaking (Of course) but secondly and equally just important would be the environments, development cultures, and the team format that you have worked amongst.

Businesses need to be sure that you can integrate seamlessly into their way of work, the organizational flow & pretty much that you can hit the ground on two feet, running.

If this is something that you may have missed out on, try including a bullet point or two about the team size that you worked in, if it was an agile environment, and whom you worked with closely or reported to (This could be PMs, QAs, stakeholders, Engineering Leads etc.).

2. References

Not many people will include this on their CVs, in some instances for understandable reasons but ultimately, when your CV goes directly to a hiring manager – there’s some huge value in having some short (1 or 2 sentence) statements from your managers in previous positions towards the bottom of your CV.

If your experience was good, and you still have a great relationship with the manager – then seriously, why not showcase this. It’ll encourage hiring managers to trust your profile could be a great fit for their teams.

If it were me – I’d personally aim to reach out to some (Maybe 3 or 4) previous teammates/seniors, to type something brief up. Including their first name, the business you worked with, their position, and of course the statement itself.

3. Repo’s / Open Source code

Okay, not every developer has an abundance of open-source code that they are able to share. No one expects you to spend your free time outside of work coding on personal projects or even to be able to open source all of the work you are doing with your clients, NDA’s do exist.

But, so many businesses that I have worked with and managers that I speak with, love to see a short view of some of the work you’ve done in the past and your ideology behind it. It’s a great way to move forward quickly in processes & also, in some instances – I’ve seen hiring managers bypass technical tests just because of open-source code alone.

So if you have code that you can open source, excellent – make sure you feature a link at the top of your CV (GitHub, GitLab, Bitbucket etc.) I’d even go as far as asking businesses in interviews whether you can expect to work on any open-source code too – it’s in your best interest.

Hopefully, this helps. If you are a developer that has seen some success in tweaking certain parts of your CV in the past or if you are a manager that has some alternative views on what sets aside a great CV from another – then it’d be great to hear some of your stories too!