This past couple weeks I’ve been sifting through CVs for the frontend developer we’re looking to hire at Conferize. So far it’s been a mixed bag, but I’ve noticed a few recurring themes across those that are being progressed on to an interview. Based on this experience I’ve jotted down some tips that I believe would help potential candidates in assembling a more well rounded application.
Write a custom cover letter
We don’t expect War and Peace, but something that makes it clear you’ve spent some time looking in to the company and what you can bring to the table by joining. A two liner indicating that this application is in response to the job advertisement you came across isn’t a cover letter.
Read the job description carefully
Before applying ensure that your skill set overlaps those listed in the job description. The more recent experience the better for a mid to senior level frontend role as the landscape has changed a lot in the last five years. Just having jQuery experience isn’t going to cut it anymore. Obviously there is some flexibility in the extent of the overlap, but you ought to be confident in your abilities in the things that do.
Ensure links are still active
Otherwise they shouldn’t be listed on your CV. Any active links ought to be representative of you and your craft. Having a personal website that looks and performs well across viewports leaves a good impression when applying for a frontend position. Obviously an active GitHub profile would be ideal.
Spelling and grammar matters
Syntax plays a large part in programming, and if it isn’t correct your application simply won’t compile. The writing on your CV is no different. This is especially true if your applying for a remote role where communicating effectively is of paramount importance.
Keep it short and concise
Try to keep your CV to two pages - anything longer is waffling. Cull any information that’s not relevant to the role except your hobbies or interests. Examples of this I see frequently are office addresses of past positions held, driving license status and work experience not in the technology sector. If your really struggling I suggest dropping any qualifications except the most prestigious.
If you claim that you possess 6 years React experience then your obviously lying. If you claim to have contributed to Angular and it’s not on GitHub then if you come in for an interview I’ll ask you about this. I don’t mind if your PR was rejected, the fact you tried to contribute indicates your passion and understanding of the subject.
These are just my opinions based on my experiences screening job applications for frontend roles, and your mileage may vary. Happy job hunting!