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ABCV: The Do’s And Dont’s

Sima Kumar CV, CV Clinic...

ABCV: The Do’s And Dont’s

Marble, Laptop, Mac, CV, Blog, Apple
Photo by Scott Webb on Unsplash

As you can imagine, recruitment agencies receive A LOT of online applications. However, personalisation still wins. As candidates apply for jobs online and are filling out pre-formatted forms there are a few tips to increase your chances of getting noticed and standing out from the hundreds of online applications. Most notably, follow up and send your CV to the recruitment agency. Here are some key pointers on how to build your CV whether you're a fresher who just graduated or someone already working and looking for a new role.

Photo by Brooke Lark on Unsplash

Javid Pathan, Co-founder of Directory and Head of Temp Division places a lot of talent daily. He is someone who can guide a Directory candidate into full time work with his connections with leading luxury fashion retailers in London. Making a positive impression with a key decision maker at an agency is critical to candidate success. For the hundreds of random and unqualified online applications received by Javid, the ten who make the effort to follow up their online application with a personalised CV are the ones that start forging their career path with speed and success. 

Here is what Javid looks for in a successful CV submission and he does it in less than a minute. Confirming, first impressions count.

Photo of Javid Pathan by Victoria Diamandi

  1. One size DOES NOT fit all. In the age of laptops, tablets and wifi even on the underground, Javid says tailor your CV for the job you’re applying for. An easy way of doing this is to use a template and have key portions that can be customised. Recruiters understand candidates are casting a wide net, especially when it comes to fashion retail jobs. That doesn’t excuse vague and lazy CV submissions.
  2. Use strong affirmative statements in your cover letter and opening paragraph. The fashion business is fast moving, interactive and demands dynamic personalities with exemplary people skills. Javid says highlight your opening statement so the reader is inspired and curious and wants more information about the applicant. This isn’t about arrogance, it’s about aspiration.
  3. As a recruiter who goes through hundreds of applications (he was wading through 400+ for one job in particular when we spoke about this post), Javid advises candidates to be succinct. Use power words and bullet points. 
  4. Eligibility to work in the UK. If you can’t work in the UK, don’t bother applying. Recruiters are not immigration. Whereas Directory is filled with internal teams as well as a strong candidate pool that is from many different countries, every single one has the legal right to work and live in the UK. It’s understandable that fashion hopefuls look to London to make their dreams come true. However, with stricter laws on immigration and the right to live and work in London, it is up to the candidate to button up their responsibilities and apply once they receive the green light. Candidates looking for sponsorship should always contact the brand they wish to work for directly.
  5. Spell Check. Did you know candidates can have the best CV and lose the chance of an interview with a recruiter or a brand because of poor grammar and spelling mistakes? This is something luxury e-commerce retailer Farfetch is so strict about they state in on their job descriptions for applicants when they apply. When a candidate doesn’t check for spelling mistakes they are showing the recruiter they don’t pay attention to detail and produce thorough work. These are two must have skills every fashion brand Directory works with looks for. Even when candidates apply where English is their second language, always use tools to bring your CV up to par. Grammarly is widely used, easy to instal and will act as an online editor.

If you’re looking for work in fashion retail and want to have your CV looked over by a member of the Directory team, get in touch online or via email at

Establishing a relationship with a recruiter is smart and strategic when it comes to starting on the journey into fashion retail. Directory, currently has multiple roles from temp, to full time in luxury fashion, luxury jewellery and lifestyle fashion brands. Contact the team and join Directory today, start working in your dream job by the end of the week!