Your CV is all about your professional experience and skills you have acquired over the years.
And while all that is really important, adding your personal details on your CV can be equally important.
Your personal details may seem like a minor detail, but they are actually the very first thing a hiring manager sees when going through your documents.
So you need to introduce yourself properly, or you might lose them before you can even show your experience and skills.
To get this right, we need to get the answers of a few questions, and we will go through them one by one:
- Why are personal details on CV important?
- What personal details must you list on your CV?
- What personal details are optional on your CV?
- What personal details you SHOULDN’T include on your CV?
- How to format personal details on your CV correctly?
If you don’t feel confident in your overall CV performance, you should check out our CV Builder and create a unique and eye-catching design.
But if you are ready to dive into the personal details on your CV, stick around.
Why are personal details on CV important?
First things first, are personal details on your CV really that important?
Simply put - yes, and here is why.
As we already mentioned, your personal details are your first chance to introduce yourself to a potential employer.
Usually, hiring managers go through a pre-selection of candidates before they decide which they would like to call in for an interview.
Listing personal details like your name and contact information in an easy-to-read and easy-to-find way on your CV can help them contact you.
But omitting those or not formatting them correctly can eliminate your chances right away.
Furthermore, many organizations have databases of all their previous job position candidates. Having your personal details listed correctly can help hiring managers contact you for any future suitable job openings.
What personal details are a must on your CV?
There are plenty of personal details you can list on your CV depending on various factors like job position, experience you have, etc.
But no matter whether you're writing a CV for a job, or for applying for a federal or academic position, there are a few personal details entries that are an absolute must.
The first piece of personal details you need to provide is your full name. That way you introduce yourself to the hiring manager and you establish a primary connection with them.
When writing your name, make sure it is the largest text in your whole CV. It should be at least 6 points larger than anything else.
If you are feeling creative, you can always set a different font or color for your name only, but make sure it looks good. If you are not confident in the result, you should keep it simple.
In most cases, your first and last name are the best way to go, but in case your name is too long and does not fit well on the page, you can write your first name and use initials after that.
The other crucial part of your personal details is your contact information, as it is the only way you can ever be contacted for an interview.
Nowadays, email is usually the preferred method of communication and will probably be the first choice of the hiring manager when contacting you.
But don’t list just any email that you have got. An email address that seemed funny in college is not the right email address for the job.
You would want a professional looking email to list on your CV.
Your best option is to use a provider like Gmail and keep a format that includes your name, like “email@example.com” .
That is the second must that you should not exclude from your contact information. It is just as important a means of communication, as your email address.
Make sure you list your personal cell phone, so that you would be sure that the hiring manager would reach you.
Keep only one phone number on your CV. Any more than that might come off confusing and would be more difficult to keep track of.
In this modern age many people work from home, and so your address is no longer a must.
But typically, it might work well for you.
There are some reasons for some employers to prefer local candidates, including:
- Tax purposes
- Traveling time
The safe way to go is to check the job listing first and see if it is required.
A thing to be extra careful about here is what part of your address you include.
If you decide to include any, make sure you only list city and state.
Any more information is too much, and can even be harmful to you, if your CV ends up in the wrong hands.
What personal details are optional on your CV?
After you list your full name and contact information on your CV, you can easily move on to your work experience section, but if you have the chance, you can include some more personal details, as they may help you out more than you think.
If possible, you should always include your professional title right beneath your full name.
It should show the hiring manager two different things about you - what you do and what is your level of experience in the role.
Keep in mind that you should use a job title that is common enough for the hiring manager to understand it. If it is not that common, you can always find a common equivalent and use it instead.
What you need to be careful of here is that your LinkedIn profile should reflect what you have already listed on your CV. Any mismatches might come across as a potential lie and you might lose your chances to get the job.
Personal website or Portfolio
If you are applying for a creative position, a website that showcases your portfolio, work achievements and skills, can really be a great addition to your CV.
Another great reason for including a personal website is if you are a web developer, as that would be a great proof of your talents.
In the modern world, it is crucial to know more languages, as the world is becoming more and more connected.
So, any language skills you have would not remain unnoticed.
Your potential employer would absolutely be happy to see some additional language skills on your CV.
If you have any certification for any language, don’t miss out on listing it.
What personal details you SHOULDN’T include on your CV?
When talking about personal information, there is such a thing as too much information. There are plenty of things that should not be shared with the hiring manager, as your CV is a working document after all.
The job listing may state that you should be living in a particular state or city for you to apply for the job, but that has nothing to do with your nationality.
The only thing that matters is if you are qualified for the job.
And even though employers are forbidden by law to discriminate depending on factors like nationality, you can only increase your chances for discrimination by listing your nationality on your CV.
However, there are job positions where it would be necessary to list your nationality, like a government or private job where citizens of a particular country can apply.
In most countries it is illegal for an employer to take your gender into account for a job position.
But even if that’s not the case, you should not list your gender unless the job you are applying for is not gender specific, as it can again result in unwanted discrimination.
Your CV is a working document that has place only for work-related information. And thus, your personal life and sexual orientation have no place within it, and are usually unwelcomed.
Another personal information that can lead to discrimination is race. Although in most countries it is illegal to take race under consideration for a job position, it is best if you exclude it from your CV.
One more piece of your personal life that has no place in your CV is your marital status. Being married and/or having children should not be a factor for considering you for a job position.
However, keep in mind that some jobs, like in the military or armed forces, may require candidates to stay unmarried for a specified period after joining
Religion or Belief
No matter if you are strongly religious, or not at all, that has no place on your CV. Employers in many countries are forbidden by law to discriminate against any individual depending on their beliefs and religion.
Long gone are the times when CVs included photos. Nowadays that is something that most people avoid. You would not want to be judged by your appearance, but by your experience and skills.
Furthermore, in some countries it is illegal to add a photo to your CV.
Date of Birth
Some employers may prefer older or younger workers, but your age should not reflect in any way your professional skills.
The only timestamp you would want to add in your CV is the years of relevant experience you have.
In some rare cases though, there are restrictions like a minimum or maximum acceptable age for the job. It applies mostly for government jobs, and in this case you should consider listing your age to show that you meet the criteria.
Listing your current salary may be considered unprofessional by your potential employer.
There is enough time for you to negotiate your salary, if your interview goes well, but at this point, you don’t need to share that information.
How to format personal details on your CV correctly?
Formatting your personal details correctly is just as important as listing them.
The best way to go is to have your name with big and bold letters at the top of the page, followed by your contact information and any other personal details in smaller font below.
In some cases, you can even have a separate block with all your personal details.
No matter what format you choose, you need to make sure your personal details are easy-to-read and easy-to-find. That means they should be somewhere on top of the page and should use a standard font.
After all, your personal details are your call-to-action for the hiring manager as soon as they decide they want to contact you for an interview.
Examples of personal details on CV
Now that we are all done with the theoretical part, it would serve you good to see some great examples of what we talked about:
As you can see, all these great examples have similarities in all the right places:
- The name is written in a bigger font size than anything else
- The professional titles specify both their role and the level of expertise
- The contact information includes all the necessary means of communication
We are all done, you are now ready to perfect your personal details on your CV.
Let’s just go through it all one more time:
- You MUST add both your full name and your contact information on the top of the page
- You CAN add other relevant personal details like professional title, LinkedIn profile, personal website, portfolio, languages you know, etc
- You SHOULDN’T add any personal information that is not work-related and/or might lead to any kind of discrimination
Make sure you format all your personal details correctly and you should be good to go.
Take one last look at our examples to get you going, and get your dream job in no time.