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Make your CV work as hard as you

By Luke Aldred

​We know that our social work community are extremely hard-working, but incredibly busy. With increasing caseloads, huge pressures and only so many hours in the day it can sometimes feel impossible to have a strong work-life balance. That’s why multi-tasking is so important! If you’re considering taking the next step on the career path, we know that you won’t have much time to search. Whilst we bring you the latest social work job vacancies straight to you, it’s also helpful to ensure that your CV is working just as hard as you are! At Sanctuary, we consider ourselves experts in recruitment. We view countless numbers of CVs every single day, which means we can spot which ones stand out from the crowd, and which ones need a little TLC. What’s more, once we’ve got a great CV, we know how we can help our community use it to their advantage. 

Here are some of our top tips to help your CV work as hard as you do:

Details matter – is your CV flawless?

First things first. When you’re getting ready to job hunt, you need to share your CV as widely as you can. And that means that you need to be confident that there are no mistakes. It can be easy to have a few typos here and there, but unfortunately it won’t reflect well on you. 

To make sure that your CV is up to scratch try using automated tools such as spell check or Grammarly. These will search through your text and highlight any unexpected errors. In addition, it’s always wise to ask a trusted friend or family member to review your CV. Whilst automated tools are fantastic, they (obviously) lack an insight into the social care profession so may not notice if any initials or synonyms are incorrect. 

Check the latest job terminology

Recruitment is a time pressured environment. When a need for a social worker is identified, the hiring manager is under considerable pressure to make the right appointment as soon as they possibly can. This is one of the many reasons why many choose to use automated tools to help them scan and review CV’s as quickly and effectively as possible. These tools will look for specific keywords which are likely included as part of the job advert or job description. 

Therefore, we always recommend paying attention to the job advert and tailoring accordingly. If there is a specific phrase used within the advert, try to weave it into your CV. Not only will this ensure that you’re CV is ticking the boxes for the recruiters, but it will increase your likelihood of being filtered through to the next stage. 

If it’s a specific job role that you’re keen to apply for, speak to your Sanctuary consultant. We’re always on hand to offer CV advice, so we can help you to make the right tweaks to improve your chances of winning your dream role. 

Set yourself apart from the crowd

The personal profile is a key part of your CV as it’s the part that really helps you to stand out from others with similar experience. We previously blogged about the personal qualities that make a great social worker, and it’s wise to try and incorporate some of these qualities into your profile. Part of being a great social worker is having the ability to build a rapport with people. If you have a unique hobby which is often an icebreaker (perhaps you’re a secret bobsleigh champ) then mention it and explain how it helps you to build positive relationships. 

When it comes to your career history section, try to use proactive descriptions. It’s not just about explaining what you did/what your responsibilities were; its about explaining what impact you had on that specific task. For instance, if you worked in a managerial role and you helped to reduce administration tasks, rather than saying “I reduced administration tasks” why not expand it to “I coordinated a new administrative strategy which reduced administration tasks by 10%, allowing the team to spend more time working directly with families.” You can immediately see how this change in tone completely changes what was said and sets it apart as a strong, confident candidate.

Share, share share… and share some more

If you’re confident that your CV is ready to go, then it’s time to start sharing! Thanks to the growth in technology, it’s now easy to upload your CV at the touch of a button and wait for an influx of opportunities to head your way. 

Make the most of these opportunities by ensuring that your professional LinkedIn profile is up to date. These days, the first thing that many hiring managers will do is look up potential recruits online and view their public profiles. If you have a network of strong contacts on your LinkedIn page, then make use of them. It’s called online networking for a reason – there’s no harm in asking people if they are aware of any upcoming vacancies, particularly if you work as a locum practitioner. 

Allow Sanctuary to do the hard work for you!

Of course, the easiest and most efficient way of job hunting is to simply ask Sanctuary to work on your behalf. All you have to do to get the ball rolling is simply use the “Upload CV” button at the top of the page.

Once we’ve looked at your CV, we can help to place you into a new position quicker than ever before. We can work with you to find out what your career goals are and help you find the most appropriate social work job roles to help you on your way. We offer both locum and permanent positions across the UK so you can be sure that we’ll be able to find the best job opportunity for your career.