Different CV’s for different Countries

Often, we are told it is prudent to have 2 or 3 versions of your CV to accurately reflect the type of role you are submitting your CV for. This is common practice and OK to do as long as its not a lie. Rather, more that it drawers out, to the attention to the selector the keys points of your value proposition.

Fundamentally if these are collated correctly you will see 2 or 3 different personalities. Distinct attributes, strengths, and experience.

If this is accepted as an OK practice, we must therefore acknowledge the role international differences play in the outlook and function of the CV. Within the global village there are polarising differences in culture. For a CV, one Country it could be expected to have a picture within the content or attached.

For others it is frowned upon and may even put the applicant at a disadvantage.

What does this mean for overseas visitors that are planning to work?

They need to adapt and quick.

Australia in this case has a privileged freedom on the layout of a CV. To the point the individuality is what is expected. However, it does have many tricks and trends that work and don’t work.

Free Tip: Templates stand out a mile and very rarely work.

Regardless whether you are from India, Scotland, Brazil or China you will need to ‘unlearn’ what worked for you in your native Country and discover what works in Australia before sending out your CV. Some changes may seem minor but have a significant impact on whether you get the interview or not. This piece of paper/doc is doing a lot of work for you and you can’t leave anything to chance.

When you click SEND you are full of excitement and optimism as the job is perfect for you. Its just what you are after and you know you will excel in the role. The clock starts ticking. After some time, you may even get a notification that your application has been READ. Time to watch the phone. You don’t want to miss that call inviting you in for the interview. You may even break the habit of never answering ‘Withheld Numbers’ on the expectation it is them.

A week passes and the optimism fades as you start reading more adverts that are less of a match than the one you pinned all your hopes on. Subdued enthusiasm coupled with financial necessity encourages you to apply for these OTHER roles. Reluctantly you await the calls from these ‘lesser’ Jobs whilst keeping one eye open for the call from the best match!

Another week passes. No calls at all from any of them and now you are dejected and rejected. You know you are better than this and cannot understand what has gone wrong. You decide to call the first company to ask. Revisit the advert for the number only to see the advert has been removed. They didn’t even call you to say you have been unsuccessful. You start to apply for everything and hope for the best!

Sound familiar????

Your CV has simply let you down. It had one job and has not delivered. The companies have not rejected YOU. They have rejected your CV.

You cannot afford to miss a trick with your CV when it is not accompanied by yourself to explain it.

The investment you need is in this one component to create opportunity and options! You may dismiss the importance of this stage or even skip it entirely to reply on the CV that worked for you years ago back home, but others have not and it is them that have YOUR INTERVIEW.

Free Tip 2: Your friends, Mum or Partner are NOT the people to confirm whether your CV will work.

Even if you are sending your CV within the Country you are born you still need to put the emphasis on the important of the CV Key.

However, for the purposes of this message we want to highlight how significant the changes are if your using an OVERSEA’s norm.

If you are from overseas, the example described previously is the sad reality for most of you. It’s a passion of mine to break that wheel and help you as it IS POSSIBLE. However, you just need to invest a little into yourself.

To show you how significant the differences are I will use our friends in China as an example:

China CV Requirements

When looking for employment in China, it is important to be sure that your CV will have the format and content that Chinese recruiters and employers expect. There is an expected ‘standard’ and FORMAT RULES that must be used.

1) A recent headshot is expected on your Chinese CV

2) Education is the most important section. The better the education, the better the member of staff. Must be added in reverse chronological order.

3) Display your work experience in reverse-chronological order. Include the company name, job title, and the start and end date of each position.

4) Be wary of any embellishment – language too grandiose may be seen as bragging

5) Ideally keep the CV to one page or 2 max. This is a short and blunt document.

6) Include your date of birth, identity number, passport number, gender, marital status, how many children you have and their ages.

7) Languages and their level of fluency is very import to add.

* A typical template mirrors the look and feel of the application form (above)

I think it is fair to say that if any of my CV Plastic Surgery customers went to work in China, they would need an entirely new CV.

For me, this drives it home just how important it is to understand the country you are in and get professional help BEFORE you start sending your CV out. You only get one chance to make your first impression.

For a free consultation please contact me on:


Good luck

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