Data protection is a big issue in the modern world. Although technology has its many benefits (especially when it comes to job searching!), it also has the massive drawback of data protection issues. Data can be obtained very easily over the internet and, once something has been put on the web, it’s impossible to fully erase it.
This doesn’t mean that you need to lose sleep over it though – although data protection is a worry, it’s also something you can deal with and control yourself. When sending your CV out, think carefully about these two important questions:
Who will be accessing my CV?
If you’re sending your CV to an employer via an application form, then chances are your CV will only be viewed by members of the company, meaning you don’t have to worry too much (personal details like your phone number are very useful here). However, there’s always a chance for your CV to get mislaid, or put in the bin instead of the shredder. So, make sure to keep that in the back of your mind before putting every detail you can possibly think of on your CV.
If you’re putting your CV online, or sending it to a recruitment agency, then a lot more people are potentially going to view your CV. Once your CV is made public on the internet, any employer on that website can have a look at it to see if you’re someone they want to recruit. Potentially, non-employers could view them as well, if the site isn’t very secure. Most people, publicise their CV, and it’s perfectly fine to do so, but think about it before you do it.
Is the personal information on my CV necessary?
Your CV will probably have a combination of these types of personal information on it: your name, your address, your mobile number, your landline, your email address, your website, your Skype ID, and your LinkedIn profile. Some of these, such as your name, are vital. Others are less vital though. Think about the job you’re applying for – is everything included on there really necessary for that particular role, or can you take some bits off? Your address might be useful in some instances, but irrelevant to others, and so consider whether you really need to include it or not.
Finally, think about how you have presented your references on your CV. It goes without saying that you never write your referees’ details in full, in case they end up accessible to people who don’t need them. Instead, finish off your CV with “References available on request”. That way, you’re still providing references, but only to those that have a use for them.
It’s easy to not think about things like this when you’re job searching (you’re likely much more focused on getting a job). Data protection issues can occur whenever two pieces of personal information are combined, and so always make sure to fully consider your need for personal details, and who you are allowing to see them.