How to Write a Software Developer CV

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How to Write a Software Developer CV

Whether you are a software college graduate, an experienced software developer, or perhaps a software developer out of work looking to join the task force, looking out for a suitable job opportunity can be daunting. The entire process, from the moment you seek out a job to the actual onboarding process, is arduous. Getting the right software job as a developer is a process, and breaking it down into simple steps will help you deal with not only the stress but also help you bag that job. 

And the very first step in the job-acquiring process is building a good CV. In this article, we will be sharing information on how to write a CV for a software developer.

Understanding what is a CV

CV is the short form of Curriculum Vitae. Curriculum Vitae in Latin translates to course of life. So, a CV is a description of the course of your professional life. It is a document which enlists

all your professional experience, skills, knowledge, and expertise.

CV and resume: Are they the same?

CV and resume are written documents used as a formal introduction about a job-seeking candidate. CV and resume are often interchangeably used these days. 

One of the major distinctions is the geographical area where these terms are used. For example, the term CV is used in the United Kingdom, mainland Europe and some parts of Asia. 

A resume is used in the United States of America, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and some parts of Asia.

Another distinction between these two documents is the length. CV tends to be slightly lengthier than a resume. However, it does not matter if you use either of the terms these days.

In America, a CV is used for academic purposes, whereas a resume is used for seeking jobs.

The importance of crafting a good CV

Building a good CV is often the most neglected by software developers. However, it is important to note that writing a good CV is one of the most crucial steps. 

  • Screening a CV is the first step in most hiring processes. Most human resource professionals or hiring professionals will decide whether to set up an interview based on one glance at your CV. 
  • Your CV is the one thing that will set you apart from a huge number of other candidates applying for the same position. It is, therefore, crucial that you craft your CV carefully. 
  • It is also important to avoid common mistakes that might get your CV and, thus, your candidature rejected.  

How to create a CV for a software developer?

Creating a software developer CV is an easy process. Use the following headings in your CV in this order:

  • Personal Details
  • Profile
  • Skills
  • Work Experience
  • Education

Following are some of the guidelines you can use to create a CV specifically for crafting a software developer CV.

Mention your relevant personal details

This is the top-most part of your CV. 

  • Start by mentioning your name in bold so that it is easier for the hiring professional to see your name. 
  • Add your relevant contact details below it. Mention your contact number with the right country code or relevant local code (in case of landlines), email address, and address if you can. 
  • Along with this, provide links for your LinkedIn profile and GitHub profiles. A GitHub profile is an easy way to showcase any code or personal projects you want to share with your recruiters.

Add profile section

  • In the profile section, start by mentioning your developer role – front-end, back-end, or full-stack. 
  • Then write a brief summary of your overall experience to date. 
  • Mention your professional journey in 2-3 sentences. 
  • Mention in brief your previous responsibilities and current position. While doing so, use action words and strong adjectives. 
  • You can also mention your overall years of professional experience as a developer.  

Mention your technical skill set

For a software developer, mentioning the tech-stack and relevant technical skills is essential. 

You can list them by separating each skill with a comma. If the skills are a manageable number to list, you may also use bullet points. 

Describe your work experience

  • Start with the most recent work experience you have and go back in reverse order.
  • Mention the organisation you worked for as a subheading. Alongside it, mention your journey’s starting and ending dates with the organisation. 
  • In the next line, list your responsibilities and accomplishments in the organisation in bullet points. Note to keep the bullet points minimal. 
  • Use strong verbs to describe your responsibilities, preferably followed by your contribution to the projects.

State your educational background

Mention your graduation or post-graduation (if applicable) educational background along with the college names. You can also mention the school attended, but it is optional.

Wrap it up with any relevant certifications

Finally, mention any technical certifications you might have done during your professional journey. 

Certain technical certifications hold value and show that you are well-versed in that particular technology. It boosts your chances of getting noticed and hired.

What should you not add to your CV?

Make sure your software developer CV does not have the following:

Unnecessary personal information

Do not add any personal or irrelevant information to your CV. Anything that is out of the scope of your professional setting is irrelevant. 

A monologue describing your whole career trajectory in too much detail is also best avoided as it increases the length of the CV. In addition, interviewers have very limited time at hand. 

Most of the time, if the CV is too long, they might not read it and skip it entirely. Stick to keeping your CV between one to two pages at the most. 

If you are a highly experienced professional, then you can take the liberty of adding another page. But most CVs should be at most three pages. 

Spelling and grammatical mistakes

Make sure there are no spelling mistakes in your CV. Spelling mistakes and grammatical mistakes can mean that the candidate is not serious or diligent about their work. 

If there are mistakes in your CV, most of the time, it gets immediately rejected. Ensure that you spell-check your CV for minute details using tools like Grammarly.

Any skills that you are not an expert in

Avoid adding any skills that you do not know well. Even if your CV gets selected on that basis, you might stumble in the technical rounds. This gives a bad impression, and your candidature may get cancelled immediately. 

Too many words 

Ensure that your CV is only 1-2 pages long. Do not exceed the page limit of the CV, as it can result in disqualification. Recruiters have a huge volume of candidates to screen. Lengthier CVs just add to their workload. 

Your photograph

As a software developer, your photo or picture is irrelevant to the CV. It is an unnecessary detail, which will just add to the length of the CV by occupying more space.

Software developer CV example 

Based on the guidelines provided above, let us now see what a sample CV for a software developer can look like. This example shows how to lay out some of your previous roles, we have done two as an example.

Anna Smith
Contact no: +44- 7912345678
Email: annasmith@gmailexamples.com
LinkedIn Profile: https://www.linkedin.com/annasmithexamples
GitHub Link: https://github.com/annasmithexamples

Profile
Highly motivated back-end developer with 7+ years of professional work experience. Proficiency in providing innovative and custom solutions to assist business requirements in an efficient manner. Advanced skills and knowledge of programming languages and technical stacks with a good understanding of coding practices, debugging, and other tools required in the software development lifecycle. 

Skills
JavaScript, Android, Python, Java, RestAPI, PHP, AWS, Oracle/SQL, NodeJS, Spring Frameworks 

Work Experience
Company A April 2019 – Present Day

  • Worked on multiple projects and achieved the target deadlines  
  • Created and built a new product from scratch for an e-commerce site
  • Revamped an existing tool with new APIs and tech stack.

Company B June 2016 – April 2019

  • Worked on an application to provide services for a video streaming app.
  • Built RESTful APIs to analyse data on customers’ viewing habits.
  • Created utilities which decreased the buffering time by 60% for the video streaming app

Education
Computer Science Graduate from London University with 8.3 CGPA.
School – London Primary and High School.

Certifications
Oracle Certified Java Developer – JavaSE11

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Conclusion 

Having technical skills is not necessarily a guarantee that you to get hired. You need to put in the hard work at each step, including crafting the right CV. Using a good, readable format and sticking to the guidelines will help you with writing a great CV. 

Once your CV is shortlisted, it is just a matter of a few interview rounds before you get hired.

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