Include Extra Information About Yourself
When writing a CV, I often include a section entitled other information. Most of the items included under this heading are, of course, optional, but then, as you probably know, there are no hard and fast rules for CV writing. A CV is a marketing document, for use in a very competitive environment and its one and only function is to give information, usually to a prospective employer in support of a job application. What information you give is entirely up to you.
The purpose of my other information section will usually be to include things that don’t belong anywhere else on the CV. It can also be useful for giving a bit of background about the type of person you are, but don’t fall into the trap of including too much of this type of stuff, for fear that you make it appear that your out of hours activities are more important to you than your work..
Some personal information including date of birth and marital status, used always to be included on a CV but, following the introduction of the age discrimination act in October 2006, this is no longer required. However, Nationality and Visa status (if applicable) does need to be included to show whether you are eligible to work in the UK.
Many hours of valuable working time can wasted by people escaping from the office for a quick cigarette, so I usually take the opportunity to put in Health: excellent non smoker. If you do smoke, just leave this item out and nobody will notice its absence. Driving: full clean licence (full UK licence if you have points), is another thing that may or may not be relevant to the job application and which you may choose to include.
Extra curricular activities may be included under a section of their own, but unless they are significant, this also may be the type of thing you may relegate to ?other information?, along with any achievements which are not job related.
Depending upon the nature of your job, things like languages, IT skills and computer literacy may already have been included in your profile, but if they haven’t, it is useful to include them somewhere – so this section comes in handy for that as well.
Lastly I come to the Interests and Hobbies section which many people believe should be left out altogether. If you have the space, I don’t see any harm myself, in including information about yourself and your interests. But keep it in perspective, remember that the CV is being address to an employer who may prefer to think that your work is the main thing in your life.
One good reason for including interests is to demonstrate that you have an active lifestyle. I always try to start with some activity such as sport or keeping fit – even walking the dog is better than nothing! Things to avoid mentioning are dangerous activities, which might mean you would need time off work with broken limbs. Also travelling which could mean that you would be seeking to relocate at some time.
Now, I am well aware that things like reading and current affairs, theatre and cinema, family life, socialising with friends are boring and everybody does them, but as long as the interests are confined to only one single line there is no harm in presenting yourself as a well rounded person.