CVs in the Scandinavian country often have certain aspects of layout, presentation and content in common. By writing a CV that sticks to some of these recognisable customs, you may improve your chances of catching the eye of a potential employer.
Whether you are writing your CV in English or Danish, making your resumé easy on the Danish eye in terms of its layout and content is a good way to start.
Write a brief profile text
Below your photograph and contact details, a paragraph of about 6-9 lines describing your experience, skills, education and character is a common way to lead into a CV. This text can be adapted depending on the job you’re applying for and how you want to present your skills.
Use a professional photo
Not professionally-taken, necessarily, but one taken in a professional context or that has a ‘business-like’ feel to it. Good potential backgrounds are windows, office buildings or even the sea – as long as it’s not a reused holiday snap. The photo should also be suitable for printing and many Danish CVs go with a black and white finish.
This anonymised CV gives an idea of how sections on Danish resumés are commonly laid out. Image: The Local
Don’t make it too long
Any more than three pages and your CV is likely to be considered overly hefty, resulting in the unwanted effect of the recipient spending less time reading it than if it was shorter. Aside from the profile text, chronological (most recent at the top) lists of qualifications, relevant employment history and other relevant experience should be kept brief enough to fit within 2-3 normal-sized pages. Extra tip: be sure to number the individual pages.
Danes appreciate creativity, but a CV is not normally the place to showcase it. Keep it simple with clear sections and information and avoid wacky fonts. We recommend Helvetica, Times New Roman and Garamond.
These are a great thing to include if you have agreed them with your referee and they are specifically applicable to the job you’re applying for. If you’re sending unsolicited applications, the sentence ‘references available upon request’ or, in Danish, ‘anbefalinger kan fås ved nærmere henvendelse’ at the bottom of your CV is just as acceptable as well as space-saving.