How to improve your CV to work in Japan
Having a good CV or resume is extremely important when looking for a job. Not only will study and work experience will be considered, but also our summarizing skills and our ability to write different ideas in an orderly manner. On top of that, we should be aware that there are different ways of writing our CV depending on the country where we are applying for the job, and what it could be a perfect resume in country A might be immediately ignored in country B.
Today we are going to give you some tips on how to write a CV for a job in Japan.
Picture: Depending on where you live, attaching a picture to your CV is not only unnecessary but it also can be considered something negative. However, in Japan, you should never forget attaching your picture. Take it wearing a business attire, facing to the camera and with good quality. Try to look professional, men should be shaved and women should not wear too strong make up. Forget about selfies, blurry pictures or those taken with your friends from your trip to the beach last summer. If you cannot even make the effort to take a professional looking picture probably you are not a hardworking person (this is what many HR officers may think).
Personal information: You must always include full name, gender, address, date of birth, phone number and email address, at least.
Academic history: Normally this is written in chronological order, from older to more recent. If you have already graduated, writing information about what you did before university is not generally necessary. You should write your university name, your major and the years of entry and graduation. Since Japanese culture cares a lot about neatness, remember to write clearly and straight to the point.
Employment history: Same as with your studies, write about this in a chronological order and clearly: name of the company, position, dates and main tasks done in each job. Make sure that the person who is reading can understand what you were doing in your previous job even if they do not know your company at all.
Skills and languages: Write down all your skills, from technical to linguistic with your proficiency level in each one of them. In Japan, having certifications measuring your skills level is quite important, so if you have obtained any certificate or license do not forget to mention it.
Others: Here you can write about your hobbies, volunteer programs you have done, goals for the future, etc. In case you are not attaching a cover letter, you can also mention briefly your reasons to apply for the job.
Your CV is the first impression the human resources staff will have about you, and this will decide if you continue to the interview stage or you are dismissed. Make sure to work on it in order to maximize your opportunities!