How To Write A Personal Statement For A Job? Employment
Personal statements are often used in job applications, but can also be used for college and university applications, too. Here, we’ll give you some hints and tips for creating a personal statement for a job that goes the distance. Read on to find out more!
What is a personal statement?
First thing’s first…what is it?
A personal statement for a job is usually a paragraph about you that goes on the top of your CV. It’s sometimes known as a personal profile, professional profile, or even a career objective – so keep an eye out for these kinds of terms too in your job hunt.
Your personal statement should be an ‘overview of you,’ covering things like: who you are, why you think you are suitable for the role, what you will bring to the job, and your career goals.
If you are wondering why a personal statement is important (after all, shouldn’t all that be in your CV anyway?) it’s worth knowing that recruiters get 100s of CVs sent to them every single day. And on average they spend about 6 seconds looking at a CV before making a decision on the candidate. So, having a personal statement at the top of your CV gives a brief, easy to read summary that will hook the recruiter in and make them want to call you in for an interview.
Example of a personal statement for a job:
A friendly and enthusiastic individual, currently looking to return to a retail assistant role after spending the last 3 years raising a family. I possess excellent communication and listening skills, and I work extremely well in a team, as well as being able to work confidently on my own. I have recently volunteered at a local charity shop, as a sales assistant, to refresh my skills, and I am committed to continuing my career on a full-time basis.
How to write a personal statement
Like the example above, your personal statement should be short and sweet. Remember, your aim is to catch the attention of the recruiter so they read your CV in more depth before inviting you to interview.
Before you start, it’s best to sit down with your updated CV and make a list of all of your relevant skills and experience. Examples of skills you could include are:
- Numeracy (i.e. good at working with money)
- Team work
- Problem solving
Once you have a list of these things, it should be a lot easier to pull together an effective personal statement.
What if I have no work experience?
Having no work experience doesn’t mean you can’t write a good personal statement. There are plenty of other ways you can demonstrate your skills. Do you have a hobby or an interest? If you do, it’s likely you use key skills to do this and the best part is you can put this in your personal statement. Similarly, if you were involved in any clubs, teams or projects at school.
The key to writing an effective personal statement is keeping it relevant to the role you are applying to. So make sure you read the job advert and any accompanying information thoroughly to understand what the employer is looking for!
What do I put at the start of my personal statement?
Many, many people struggle to write about themselves. So, if this is you, don’t worry! To kick off your personal statement, see if you can come up with a short, sharp statement (no longer than one sentence) that describes you accurately.
This could be one that highlights your previous work experience:
‘A flexible construction worker with three years’ experience in bricklaying, roofing, plastering and plumbing.’
Or one that shows skills and experience you have from hobbies, interest or education:
‘A hardworking individual with a passion for creativity alongside a Distinction in Level 3 Graphic Design.’
Again, keep it short. And don’t forget to big yourself up a little bit! Make the recruiter believe that you are the best person for the role you are applying for.
What goes in the middle of a personal statement?
When it comes to writing your personal statement, it’s best to have at least a loose structure in mind to help you get everything down that you need to. You could include:
- Why are you applying?
- Why are you suitable for the role?
- What relevant job experience or training do you have?
- What projects or experiences have you taken part in that could show your abilities ?
- What makes you the perfect person for the job?
Use the answers to these questions to write your personal statement.
What goes at the end of a personal statement?
The end of your personal statement should make it clear to whoever is reading what your goals are professionally. For example, the construction worker above may put:
‘Looking to take on my next challenge in the world of construction, and develop my skills with a reputable local business.’
Or, for the aspiring graphic designer:
‘Looking for a start in the exciting world of graphic design, where I can learn from the best with a creative and innovative company.’
Remember: keep it brief!
Do’s and Don’ts for your personal statement
To help you on your way, here is a list of the do’s and don’ts for your personal statement.
- Make sure your tone is polite, friendly and (most importantly) professional.
- Keep it short and sweet. Your personal statement should only be around 3 or 4 sentences long.
- Include relevant information, such as previous experience.
- Highlight your key skills.
- Make it clear what kind of role you are looking for – this will help highlight your suitability for the one you are applying for.
- Use the job advert, person specification and any other information you have about the company to inform your personal statement.
- Make your achievements clear! Blow your own trumpet!
- Use slang words or be too conversational
- Include any personal information that’s not relevant. For example: how many children you have, whether you are single or married, etc.
- Be negative!
- Lie or exaggerate the truth.
- Take a template from online without personalising it!
Need a bit more help?
If you need help in writing your CV or personal statement, we can help. For a detailed and private 1-2-1 with one of advocates who can advise, please call 01902 96228 or fill in the form below to request a callback.