Your CV is one of the most important documents you will ever produce. It is your first opportunity to make a good impression on a new employer.
It should contain no spelling mistakes or grammatical errors - get someone else to double check it for you
It needs to be user friendly and easy to read; don't try to be too flash - keep it simple and relevant
You want it to tell the person reading it why they should invite you for interview
Before you actually write your CV, sit down and make sure you have all the information you need (dates, company names, job titles, reference details, exam grades, etc.). If you are applying for a particular position - read the requirements for that position carefully and think how you meet those requirements.
DO NOT GET TOO 'CREATIVE' - details can and will be checked by employers. By all means present what you have achieved in a positive light, but do not lie. Any employer is likely to reject someone who has lied on their CV.
Your CV should be no more than 5 pages - the average however is 2 to 3 sides long. You should use no more than two different fonts (the smallest font size should be 11), and keep use of colour to a minimum.
Start with your name and personal details (they will need to be able to contact you to arrange an interview!). You do not need to write curriculum vitae - they will know what it is.
For each section, you should put a heading so the CV is easy to navigate for the person reading it.
A short personal statement giving a summary of who you are and what you want in a few carefully worded sentences is a good start.
Education & Qualifications
You should detail any qualifications and training you have received, starting with the most recent. Employers like to see exam grades, and where you studied; they do not need to see a detailed breakdown of the modules you studied (unless it is very relevant to the job you are applying for).
You should detail your work experience, again starting with the most recent. It is helpful to put in the company name, dates you worked, and your job title, followed by a few bullet points summarising your main duties and achievements with that employer. Bullet points will help you not to waffle! It is useful to highlight any particular achievements (for example, where you have saved the department money, or if you completed a project to a tight deadline). It is helpful to put reasons for any gaps in your CV (e.g. six months' travelling around Asia) and reasons for leaving (for example, redundancy or relocation).
It is recommended that you supply the details of at least two referees (name, address, contact number, email address), preferably former employers. It is recommended that you should notify these people that reference requests may be coming through to them and that they should respond as soon as they can. In some cases, you will not be able to start a new position or have your application processed until your references have come through.