A CV isn't just a record of where you have worked. It may not be an autobiography, but it is a document that will sell you to a prospective employer.

One of the main mistakes I see with CVs is that candidates often focus too much on their detailed responsibilities in each of their roles and not enough on what they have actually achieved.

That, for me, is the one single difference between an ineffective and a dynamic CV. Take a quick look at your own CV and consider what you have written under each role. Have you simply listed your responsibilities, in effect copying your internal job spec, or have you elected to use dynamic words such as achieved, restructured, developed and re-oriented, in order to highlight your key achievements?

It is worth remembering that the key purpose of your CV is to get you to the next stage in the job-hunting process whether that is the first interview, a speculative meeting, a phone conversation or a dialogue with a networking contact, for example.

In reality, CVs are probably only given a cursory glance initially, with a recruiter or a hiring manager briefly reviewing the candidate against the main aspects of the job role before deciding whether or not to take them to the next stage. The important point, therefore, is to make sure that during that initial screening process, the main selling points of your CV shine through.

Within the grocery industry, CVs tend to be skills-based. In other words, the focus is on the candidate's key transferable skills, supported by specific achievements in each role. It is so important to make sure that the key skills you choose to highlight are relevant and align with the requirements of the role on offer. Check the list of must-have skills for the job you are applying for and if there seems to be a match, make sure your CV reflects this closely. Make it easier for the person conducting the initial screening to select your CV from the numerous others weighing down their in-tray.

Be careful not to limit yourself to just one CV. More focused jobseekers tend to develop a core CV then tailor this to suit the role or roles for which they are applying. Your career history, achievements in your job, academic and professional development, and personal interests would all stay the same, but it is your profile and your key skills that may vary slightly to more specifically reflect the requirements of the role on offer. So you may eventually end up with a bank of three, four or even more CVs tailored to specific types of jobs.

So, is your current CV working hard enough for you - or is it time for an upgrade?

Glenn Steward is a professional business coach and director of The Training Edge Co.