Although there are often a large number of applicants for sales assistant positions, many CVs are quite poorly written, which offers an opportunity for you to stand out from the crowd by spending a little time sharpening your cv into an effective sales tool.
Attention to detail
You are probably aware that a customer’s impression of a company is formed by how the sales assistant looks or sounds. In the same way, a potential employer’s first impression of you will be determined by how your CV looks and how easy it is to read. Therefore you must ensure it is neat, well structured and contains no spelling or grammatical errors.
You can ensure a good initial impression by using a legible font, such as Calibri or Arial. Both are easy to read either on screen or when printed out. If using Calibri, opt for 11 or 12 point; Arial is a little bigger so choose 10 or 11 point. Additionally, stick to black and white font and when listing information try using bullet points.
When you have finished your CV, read it and then read it again. When you have done this ask someone whose English you rate highly to read it again for you and try to identify any errors in spelling or grammar. It is hard to overstress how absolutely essential it is to get this right. Nothing will harm your chances more than shoddy spelling or clumsy grammar.
This is one of the biggest parts of sales assistant roles and it will really strengthen your CV if you highlight how fantastic you are at engaging with customers. You can do this by including any successes you have had, such as mystery shopper reports, ‘Customer of the Month’ awards or letters of thanks.
Have you taken part in any merchandising or sales promotions? These are often a frequent event in a sales assistant’s role, so any relevant experience is well worth highlighting. You can include details either in a Major Achievements section towards the beginning of your CV or as part of Key Activities in your Career History.
Relevant information to highlight includes the purpose of the event, your contribution and the outcome. Also try to include factual information as it helps the hiring manager visualise the situation. For example:
“Part of the Sports Direct team that launched the new XYZ trainer range in the Oxford St. store – involving dance demonstrations in front of XYZ customers and answering questions on product care. The promotion successfully launched the new trainer, resulting in sales of more than 300 units after each event.’
Almost every role in sales has one or more targets and employers are sure to be impressed if you understand how your contribution fits into the wider company effort. Think of your career to date and try to come up with examples of products or services you have sold, together with the volume. If you have also had targets to meet and have performed well against these, you should mention the details. Many companies run internal sales competitions so if you have participated in these and have done well, you can use these examples to show that you are a star sales person. Having done well as a sales assistant in the past will mean employers are likely to think you can do so again in the future for their company.