Drafting, updating and re-drafting your curriculum vitae is a process. It’s a process you will spend many hours on over the course of your life. It will also materially impact your career. These are all reasons why it is important you get the best out of it and make yourself shine.
At the same time, however, a CV has to be concise, with no more than two A4 pages as the general rule of thumb. With these two opposing requirements in mind, what place, if any, should your online and tech hobbies have in your CV? Here are a few words of advice in this regard.
The first thing to note is prioritization is of utmost importance.
Do your hobbies offer something more than other achievements or experience that could go in their place? It goes without saying that an impressive avatar level in an online fantasy game is unlikely to outweigh actual work experience, but some online and tech hobbies may offer a great deal.
If you have experimented with programming, tried your hand at a prototype pair of automated shades or set up a series of websites, that demonstrates tangible skillsets and creativity that may genuinely speak more highly of you than some of the weaker items currently on your CV.
Additionally, these kinds of hobbies also imply you are a particular kind of person – someone not content to spend all your free time doing nothing or kicking back in front of the TV – which, if presented well, can feed into a more generally favorable perception of your character on the part of your prospective employer.
The second criteria in deciding whether or not to include online and tech hobbies is relevance. It is important to augment your CV for each job you apply for, and in doing so you should ask yourself whether the job is likely to involve the skills or experience your hobby has given you.
Even if the specific position you’re applying for does not involve those skills, it may still be worth including your hobbies if other areas of the company rely on such skills, as this may give you the edge over another candidate. If the company or organization does not require those skills, then it might be a waste of your valuable CV space.
How to Use Them
Finally, if your hobbies do meet the criteria of importance and relevance, make sure you exploit them well.
Brainstorm what precise skills these hobbies have bequeathed to you, whether commercial, design, competence in a particular program or whatever else.
Make sure you emphasize these skills in a concise manner, strategically highlighting how these skills intersect with and/or complement other experience that you have. A good CV requires meticulous crafting to braid it together, but if you take the time necessary to do it well, then your online and tech hobbies can make valuable additions to this important document.
About the author: Post by guest blogger Shane, a writer who enjoys blogging about modern technology from automated shades for the home to high-tech gear for outdoor pursuits.