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Skills-based CV Writing

Skills-based CV Writing Icon

Used by jobseekers with limited experience, skills-based CVs, otherwise known as functional CVs, highlight the skills you have rather than the experience you don’t. This skills-based CV template shows you how:

Mia Smithson
52 My Street, Fourtown, Fiveshire, WX59 9XW

A recent graduate with employment and voluntary experience, I have skills and attributes to offer the business world including leadership, analytical thinking, problem solving, team working and communication. I am keen to learn on a graduate programme and to make a contribution to the organisation.


University of Exeter (2019-2022)

BA Archaeology 2:1

Fourtown School (2012-2019)

A-levels: history, English, French. AS-level geography

10 GCSEs including maths and double science


Working in a team

  • Staff member at Starbucks fulfilling orders and providing excellent customer service
  • Project assistant for Dig NW collaborating with the project team to plan Summer Dig events and ensure each day ran smoothly
  • Committee member of university Archaeology Society, devising and facilitating annual programme of events and talks
  • Editing and publishing newsletter for South West Branch of Council for British Archaeology


  • Successfully combining study, part-time work, volunteering and extra-curricular activities
  • Coordinating well-received archaeological events for Dig NW and the university Archaeological Society. Summer Dig participants commented, ‘What a well-organised day. It rekindled my interest in archaeology’. ‘It was so exciting finding real pieces of ancient pottery’. ‘Mia showed me how to interpret and care for the pottery we found’


  • As staff student liaison for my course year I negotiated changes to the seminar timetable to enable better use of available rooms and IT
  • As chair of the university Archaeological Society I negotiated event programmes with colleagues and staff, booking speakers, agreeing terms and negotiating budgets

Written communication

  • Writing articles for non-archaeologists for local Archaeology Branch newsletter
  • Report writing as project assistant to Dig NW Summer Digs
  • For my university course, producing essays, reports, seminar papers to strict guidelines

Verbal communication

  • Dealing with customers at Starbucks, including complaints referred by junior staff, as well as communicating with staff and managers
  • On my university course, creating and giving presentations to large and small groups, some on my own and others with fellow students
  • As project assistant to Dig NW, briefing participants on Summer Dig event, including health and safety inductions
  • As chair of the university Archaeological Society, introducing speakers, leading panel discussions and chairing question sessions


  • Shift leader at Starbucks, responsible for rotas, customer experience and training new staff
  • Chair of university Archaeology Society, leading committee meetings and taking a strategic lead
  • Responsible for groups of adults and children

Analytical thinking

  • Applying theoretical and scientific principles and concepts
  • Applying statistical and numerical techniques to process data
  • Interpretation of spatial data
  • Forming structured arguments supported by evidence

IT skills

  • Competent user of Microsoft Office applications including Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint
  • Knowledge of bespoke packages, GIS and statistical analysis and modelling tools


Shift leader, Starbucks Exeter (2021-present)

  • Organising staff rotas to ensure adequate cover for each shift
  • Supervising staff and maintaining health and safety and food hygiene standards
  • Working as a member of the team to provide great customer service
  • Upselling and cross-selling to maximise revenue and meet branch targets

Project assistant, Dig NW (2020-2022)

  • Working with other project assistants to plan, book and coordinate Dig NW’s programme of Summer Dig events for members of the public and school groups
  • Facilitating each event, ensuring health and safety and dealing with problems and issues as they arise, referring to project leader as necessary
  • Giving talks to event participants, demonstrating archaeological techniques and handling finds


  • Chair of University Archaeology Society
  • Staff student liaison for my course
  • Newsletter Editor for South West Branch of Council for British Archaeology

Please be aware that this is an example. Use it as a template to help generate ideas and structure your own CV but avoid copying and pasting. Your own CV needs to be original and tailored to the job you’re applying for.

A brief personal statement at the start of your CV will set the tone and highlight the parts of your experience of interest to employers. Keep educational information to a minimum but be sure to mention any relevant modules or projects.

Your list of skills will form the majority of your CV. Choose to highlight the skills mentioned in the job advert or person specification, as these are the attributes that the employer is looking for.

Below your skills list your employment history, including any voluntary activities.


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