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Here's why you should update your CV and LinkedIn even if you aren't job hunting

Here's a funny story: This week I started volunteering in the resume hub at a not-for-profit organisation and the coordinator asked me to email through my CV. It had to be sent through that day as I was starting the next day. No worries, I thought.

However, a quick search of my files revealed that my most recent CV was over a year old. In that time I had completed a 9-month project management contract role, then started my own business. However, I hadn't updated my CV in that time. I had managed to update my LinkedIn profile, but it was far from perfect.

Now, I'm a resume writer and It took me a good couple of hours to get my CV and LinkedIn profile up to to speed. Not only had my job changed, but the whole focus of my CV was now on my new business. I had to write my profile and skills sections from scratch.

Be prepared

You never know when your dream job is going to crop up or when a recruiter is going to contact you about a role. And of course, they'll need your CV by tomorrow! So you need to be prepared.

Writing, updating and tailoring CV's (and completing job applications in general) is enormously time consuming. And more often than not you are required to submit your CV in a very short time period.

If you're one of the many people that haven't updated the format of their CV for years (if you still have a 'Career Objective' or 'Personal Details' section, I'm talking to you), then it's time for a total refresh. Read my other blog posts for inspiration in this area.

A friend of mine was approached recently by a recruiter for a more senior role. He had less than 24 hours to submit his CV and had to pull an all-nighter to get it done, then head off to work the next day. He old CV was guilty of having a 'Personal Details' section. It also did nothing to sell him, with not one achievement listed, and he came across as much more junior than he actually was.

Set reminders

It's a good idea to regularly review and update your CV and LinkedIn. Remember to do this by adding 3-6 monthly reminders to your calendar. Even if you haven't changed roles in this time, your responsibilities or projects might have changed and you can add them in.

You might also want to change the focus of your CV and LinkedIn profile if you are planning a career move in the near future. A tweak of your LinkedIn headline could send recruiters your way.

Allows time for tailoring

By having the bones of your CV and LinkedIn profile up-to-date, when you do have to complete a job application you can focus on tailoring it for the position. This will allow you to submit a quality applicationin a short time-frame that gets you an interview.

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