How to Write an Effective CV/Resume

Keep reading if you are unsure how to write an effective CV. CV/Resumes are a critical part of your application and should be taken very seriously during the application process. They represent a summary of what you have accomplished and stand for. The good point is that it is you who decides what to include in them.

Recruiters use them to decide which profiles fit best to what they are looking for and thus get invited to the next round. CVs/Resumes are your name card and will be used as a source of information throughout the application process.

What to include? See below some tips.

How to Write an Effective CV: Main guidelines

Make sure your CV/Resume stands out and does not look generic neither in form or content. The recruiters/seniors should remember you after reading it.

Select carefully what information to include and put it in context of its transcendence. Emphasize your accomplishment and make sure the reader understands their value.

Achievements in extra-curricular activities should be emphasized as they convey a strong message – and probably a few curious remarks. Such details will get you an opportunity to talk about something you are passionate about during your interviews.

On Education

List in reverse chronological order your academic education, including achievements such as scholarships or university exchanges. Trading houses generally look for top-notch candidates from a variety of backgrounds.

Engineers and math-physics-chemistry majors abound in commodity trading. This is because technical knowledge proves very beneficial in optimizing value and evaluating the feasibility of new trading ideas and investment ventures.

Finance and business graduates are also very present, as traders must have a very good understanding of commercial logic. Overall, major it is generally not a deal-breaker; applicants need to be quick with numbers and good at people.

Work

Most employers will be mainly interested in your main responsibilities as well as your team and individual accomplishments. Trading houses generally look for entrepreneurial candidates, hence make sure to include details about what was the personal impact you had in achieving final results.

Trading houses recruiting for future traders will look very positively upon candidates with experience in operations and other jobs “on-the-ground”. With some exceptions, many of the largest traders are not famous for recruiting many juniors, yet instead recruit individuals with proved experience and industry knowledge. For this reason, if you happen to have been involved with a sugar mill or worked at a coal mining operation, make sure your CV highlights it.

Other skills and achievements

Most of the common guides about how to write an effective CV overweight the importance of the education and work sections.

Many recruiters will be impressed to read about volunteer and charity work – especially if in remote areas and abroad- as they might reveal deep insights about your character and values. Do not forget to include activities that show initiative, entrepreneurship, or resilience and commitment. They’ll make you stand out in front of seniors.

In line with other industries, trading houses value experiences abroad very positively. Did you happen to live 10 years in Mongolia or Namibia while you were growing up? Did you study abroad? Such experiences shape characters and will help differentiate your application.

Languages

List all languages you speak fluently (business-level) or indicate your level of proficiency. In commodity trading, polyglots are highly sought for, since they have an easier time communication with foreign suppliers/customers. Most commodity traders speak at least one foreign language fluently apart from English.

Design

Do not forget that design is one of the most important aspects in how to write an effective CV.

  1. Make sure that you have selected an appropriate sample CV
  2. In case of doubt simplify.
  3. Do not include a picture or personal details
  4. Include your contact details and availability (important!)
  5. Use a simple font such as Calibri, Verdana, or Helvetica (forget about Comic Sans)
  6. Be memorable – not too arrogant, but make sure to highlight your successes

Finally, now that you know how to put your CV together, consider learning how to improve your cover letter and interview performance. If you are ready to apply, select your target company at our selection of the best commodity trading careers sites.

David Goldstein

David is the Head Editor at Commodity Trading Guru. He has trading experience at large commodity trading houses globally. Currently he lives with his family and two dogs in a village near Geneva and enjoys triathlons and snow sports. Ask him about fine wine and modern art.