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The CV in Belgium
Belgian CVs are usually long and detailed. although a recent trend is to make them 1 or 2 pages long. They’re always printed and they’re very precise and professional. You should always mention dates, along with a wide description of your working experience.
The Belgian CV should include the following information (the order can vary):
- Personal information (this section should be complete and include name and profession of the spouse or partner, names and ages of the children, if applicable).
- Education (in University or high school studies, grades should be included).
- Working experience (the longest section, with exact dates).
Usually points 2 and 3 are written in chronological order.
If you’re a man, you should clearly mention if you’ve served in the military. If you come from a country where military service doesn’t exist or isn’t mandatory, explain it.
Working experience is considered very important. So in your CV you should mention every experience, including student practice periods and work during holidays.
You should name every responsibility and task from every position, emphasizing those with satisfactory results. Whenever it’s possible, candidates should name the number of people who worked for them.
Candidates with University studies should also describe all their experience (because of the students practice system in Belgium, 83% students enter the market with working experience). Foreign languages are considered very important. You should mention speaking, writing and reading level. Even though sometimes a photograph is included, it’s not usual to send diplomas, references or recommendations from other enterprises along with your CV.
Except for manual labour, you usually have to send a CV and cover letter for most jobs.
Candidates with medium and high leadership experience are beginning to use American type CVs more and more.
The main characteristic of the American format CV used in Belgium is that is mentions the candidate’s professional goal. the rest is very similar to a standard short Belgian CV. In some cases, instead of the professional goal, it includes a description of the candidate’s profile, and sometimes both. This section should always go at the bottom of the CV.
Source: empleo.universia.es (Spanish version).