Never written a CV for a civilian job? Don’t worry, you aren’t in a position that requires any worry, as long as you follow our clear and simple guides.

Writing a CV for a Civilian Job Does Not Have to Be a Daunting Process

Your application will not be majorly different to a regular candidate. However, there may be some slight differences that you should pay attention to when applying for a job and writing a CV.

Here are a few tips for writing your first CV:

Short is Sweet

The biggest mistake most people make on their CV is thinking it should be a full catalogue of everything they have ever done or achieved. The reality is that the more you include in your CV, the less relevant the content is.

If an employer reads anything on your CV that isn’t relevant they will assume you are not right for the role. This can seem brutal but they go through hundreds of applications every day so the more directly you can show yourself as the right candidate, the more they will like your application.

Often, an employer will ignore any CV that is more than an A4 page long. The only time it should be more is if the application is for a highly advanced role that requires a significant description of the relevant qualifications, skills and experience.

Transferable Skills

Ex-military personnel often undermine their own ability because they assume civilian work is a world away from the service. However, today’s market is moving faster than ever and so employers are increasingly relying on adaptable employees rather than those with strictly related qualifications or experience.

For a more in-depth guide into what you should discuss and include in your CV, head over to our ex-military transferable skillset guide.


Many candidates with little application experience don’t realise how much employers dislike irrelevant content on a job application. Not only does it suggest you are inexperienced as you have had to include something irrelevant, but you don’t want the job enough to make any necessary adaptations.

As such, you must always adapt your CV to the application, so it demonstrates all the relevant skills and experience.


Like with the last point, you need to show that you will fit into the company. As such, you should first write a small personal statement demonstrating that you aren’t a robot as some Hollywood movies make military personnel out to be.

You should also consider the type of company you are applying to – the operation of a business requires considerable synergy between the staff. So, make the statement personal but also relevant.


Employers go through hundreds and sometimes even thousands of applications for every job. If you make any typos or mistakes on the CV, they might consider it enough to ignore your application. They are looking for excuses to say no, so don’t give them one.