Because you are not like everyone else (and that’s good), you can have a professional background and therefore an atypical CV. Adventures or misadventures can cross your professional path. It can be an illness that prevented you from working, a sabbatical year to take a step back on your career or a professional retraining started.
Thus, having several diverse and varied work experiences should not hamper a career. However, some recruiters are reluctant to hire candidates with atypical CVs. If you have experienced this frustration with recruiters’ misunderstanding about your career path, we have some tips to enhance your CV and take advantage of your career path.
What is an atypical CV?
Having an atypical CV means getting out of the boxes in which you are put. If you leave the classic pattern that your colleagues and people who work in your industry have, you have an atypical path.
There are several causes and factors that make you stand out among the candidates recruiters are used to interviewing:
- Training and diplomas different from those of your colleagues
- Diplomas that are not linked to each other, example: mechanics and journalism
- Your professional experience does not correspond to what is required for the position
- You are a self-taught person who has learned through unrelated professional experiences
- You have been self-employed for a long time
These factors and many more can make your job search and hiring more difficult than you expected. Having said that, don’t panic, you have some points to make. If you do it right, you are able to showcase your experiences and skills on a CV and make it attractive to recruiters.
The advantages of an atypical CV
Having an atypical professional background has advantages and disadvantages. Among the advantages, the one that seems to us to be the most obvious is originality. You have an atypical profile because you are original.
Your different work experiences provide you with additional knowledge and skills. As long as the company recruiting you is open to the difference, it would have everything to gain from recruiting you, since you can bring a fresh perspective to a known situation.
Since you have had several experiences and possibly several trainings, one of the advantages you have is versatility. The varied skills acquired during your experiences will be definite advantages.
The disadvantages of an atypical CV
Even if there are advantages of having an atypical course, there are also disadvantages of not being like the others.
A recruiter may find that while you have a range of skills, you haven’t had time to develop enough for a sufficient period of time.
Writing a CV in this case will require more effort and concentration to attract the attention of recruiters who are a little more cautious.
Another disadvantage is that many job sites use software that is based on the presence of certain predefined keywords to offer your profile to a recruiter. If the necessary keywords are not found in your CV, it will not be taken into account and you will not appear in the search results.
If by chance you are called for an interview, you will possibly be asked more difficult questions and we will seek to know the reasons for your originality.
Nothing is lost if you don’t have the job stability and “consistency” recruiters want. You just need to know how to turn the situation to your advantage.
Here are some tips to enhance your atypical profile:
Prepare the presentation of your professional career
You certainly have an idea of how to write a good CV that will attract recruiters. You should not overfill it with information that is not necessarily useful. This advice is even more valid if your field has no relation to the position you are applying for.
Focus on your strengths
What are your main qualities? What emerges the best from your self-taught journey? As we said above, your career has taught you beautiful things. Know how to quote them and match them to the job requirements.
Your cover letter can work in your favor
Let’s imagine that your CV is not necessarily attractive to recruiters, because they consider it to be too extensive, incomplete or not sufficiently in line with the duties of the job. Your cover letter can be a good opportunity to present your professional background and explain your approach: why did you make such a choice at such a time?
Please note, this is not a question of justifying yourself. Your decisions are yours. It’s more about arguing your decisions, explaining the link that your experiences may have with what recruiters are looking for and what the position requires.
Here you can find our best tips and advice for writing your cover letter.
Why should recruiters hire you?
To combat a possible lack of confidence from recruiters, there are some good reasons you can exploit to put yourself forward and trust yourself during a job interview. You will surely be asked questions like: what are your qualities? Why should we hire you? To this, you can cite these reasons:
- You are not afraid to fail
- Your versatility
- You have a different view from others
- You can adapt to different situations
- Your ability to learn quickly
- You don’t let go
- You are curious
It is never easy to talk about yourself during a job interview, even less when we are not in the boxes sought by our interlocutors. This is why these qualities can help you develop your speech and enrich your arguments during your meeting with human resources specialists.