Career in NGO's
Career in Development Sector

How to write a good CV for international development job in Charity/NGO sector


So you’ve decided to apply for that position at a Charity/NGO, but you’re stuck, blankly staring at your CV, not knowing how to best get across your experience or even if it will make the cut. You’ve got this nagging stat in the back of your head, that on average less than 10% of CVs make it through the first stage of the recruitment process

Here are some tips to help you stand out on your CV and cover letter when you’re applying for a job in international development

Make sure it’s no longer than 2-sides

Make sure it’s no longer than 2-sides and know that the first half of your CV is key – it is what the recruiter will look at first and if they aren’t intrigued to read further, they won’t! Note: Some employers such as the UN might take a longer CV, so check and do your research before hand especially on the position you are applying for.

Keep your resume clear and concise

An employer takes an average of 30 seconds to skim a resume. You want them to see right away that you are qualified for the position

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Keep it brief. Only include the relevant information

Now you have your relevant experience and you’ve shown your knowledge and passion for the organisation and its focus and ethos. What else do you need? 

 Be concise with what you include in your CV and cover letter. If previous roles aren’t particularly relevant to what you’re applying for, then don’t go into detail. If the post isn’t asking for a degree, then leave it to the end with minimal detail. Make your application as compact as possible.

Be honest

Lying on your resume is never a good idea. You don’t want to overstate your skills or results as it will mislead the employer. Have confidence in what you have to offer.

Say something different.

Before you submit your application, give it a read through from the perspective of someone hiring. Not only will this give you the opportunity to look out for any typos or mistakes, it will help you gauge whether what you’ve said will stand out from the crowd.

Most applications will end up sounding similar to each other. What can you say to make people take notice? Is there anything in your application that will make you stand out? If not, then why not? Make sure you sound like a unique individual, perfect for the role.

Learn more about how to prepare for an Interview click here