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NTU Guest Lecture - Careers & CV Advice 2024


About Us

People Marketing Fashion Recruitment is a boutique recruitment agency, established over 30 years ago, specialising in the fashion & lifestyle industry.  

We recruit for a diverse range of vacancies in the UK and Internationally,


All our consultants have first-hand industry experience and are passionate and knowledgeable about the industry and the individuals who work in it. We have an extensive network of candidates & clients globally that we have built strong relationships with over many years.


Our client list consists of retailers, brands, manufacturers and suppliers within fashion, textiles and lifestyle sectors. We are proud of our reputation for providing a high-quality personalised service, and for placing the right candidates in successful long-term career opportunities.


Job Roles

Design & Development

  • Design, Graphic Design, CAD Operator, Product Developer

Technical & QC

  • Garment Tech, Fabric Tech, QC, Product Developer, Pattern Cutter, Machinist, Sealer Grader, Ethical/Compliance Manager, Fit Model, Tech Admin.

Commercial & Sales 

  • Account Manager, Sales Exec, Business Development Manager, Sales Manager, Sales Admin, Account Co-ordinator, Area Sales Manager


  • MAA, Allocator / Retail Merchandiser, Stock Merchandiser, Import / Wholesale Merchandiser. Visual Merchandiser

Marketing & Ecommerce

  • Social Media Manager, Marketing Manager, CRM Manager, Digital and Ecommerce Manager, Brand Manager

Buying & Administration

  • BAA, Assistant Buyer, Junior Buyer, Buying Office Admin

Wholesale & Logistics

  • Logistics Admin, Operations Admin, Wholesale Admin, Supply Chain Assistant, Production Assistant



How to register with an agency & the difference between agency and direct job applications.



  • Apply for a Role
  • Register CV
  • Sign Up for Job Alerts
  • Agency can contact you for relevant roles


Job Board

  • Apply for a Role
  • Register CV
  • Sign Up for Job Alerts
  • Employers can contact you for relevant roles



  • Apply for a Role
  • Liaise with Employer or HR Direct
  • Employer may keep you on file and could contact you for other relevant roles



The same applies should you be applying to a large retailer/brand, they will have automated tracking systems, that will work in the same way. To ensure you have the best chance, make your cv readable and compatible.

You may not be aware that many employers use automated systems to search for and screen CVs. Therefore, you need to ensure that your CV includes as many keywords as possible which are relevant to the role/industry you want to work in. For example, if you’re looking for a job in Sales, ensure that related keywords such as “account management”, “negotiation” and “relationship building” are included somewhere in your CV.

You will generally be invited to an informal telephone interview with an agency once you register, so they can understand exactly what you are looking for, this is great interview practice for you, and an opportunity to ask for career advice.

Agency Process

We will talk to you in depth to understand your strengths and goals, we like to understand what you love, and why fashion and textiles is the route for you. Where you see yourself in 2,5 & 10 years.

We would discuss different job roles with you, options you may not have considered, where their place is in different organizations and how your skills and objectives fit into each role. 

Our database has thousands of clients in differing sectors across the globe, for example, a marketing manager in one business, say a start-up sports brand, will differ greatly to a multinational retailer. We ensure the roles you are put forward for, are the right level for your skillset and also the right fit for you personally.

We manage the process from start to finish; which starts by briefing you about the role and company, only when you agree a role is a good fit for you, will your details be submitted, we will arrange interviews and ensure you are fully prepared, know who you are meeting and what to expect from the interview such as if there will be any tests.

When you are successful in receiving an offer, we will manage negotiations on your behalf, again, we make sure you know what the offer includes, working hours, holidays and any other details, so there are no surprises.

You have an opportunity to advise, if there is something you need at this stage. It’s important to us, to ensure both parties are happy. Also this is a good point to mention any pre-booked holiday dates. If at this stage you have other opportunities in the mix, or other offers on the table, we will talk you about the best options, it’s always good to be honest at this stage, we won’t try to force you into a role that doesn’t feel the right fit, we all want you to be excited about your new role. 

All of our consultants have first-hand industry experience and so we are passionate about the industry we recruit for, we hope to be able to use our recruitment knowledge alongside our expert industry knowledge to offer you credible advice on how to move forward with your chosen career. We build lasting relationships and many of our candidates return to us, throughout their careers.

Working with a specialist agency means you can access additional support and advice, throughout your job search process. We will work with you to understand what you are looking for, what your aspirations and career goals are, and how best to start off your career path

Your CV

Your CV is your opportunity to make a good impression

Make sure it showcases all your relevant skills and experience in the clearest and best possible way.

Your CV will grow with you over time, and you will add to it as you gain knowledge and experience

 You can read through the person specification and job description for the role you’re applying for and then tailor your CV so it highlights relevant points where your skills and knowledge match the job advert. This will give you the best opportunity to be shortlisted.

 What to include and how to structure your CV

 Personal Summary

This is your chance to grab the recruiter’s initial attention, so this section should consist of short sentences totalling three or four lines and be around 60-70 words.

 This should highlight key aspects of your CV such as your key skills, job roles and achievements and should briefly outline the type of job you want and, more importantly, explain WHY you think you’d be suited to this kind of work.

 Avoid using generic adjectives to describe yourself, such as ‘hardworking’, ‘enthusiastic’ or ‘confident’. You may be these things, but so are all the other people who are applying. Tell the recruiter what makes YOU different to all the others!

 We prefer you not to write in the third person! Always use ‘I’ and ‘me’ when talking about yourself.

 Personal Details

Keep this section simple. Simply give your:

 Name -Include your full (legal) name, and also how you prefer to be referred to.

 Postal Address - Many people prefer not to include an address, but without this, you wont be fully registered, and may not come up in searches. Its better if we can understand a radius for possible jobs - if you will relocate - just mention this. But still include a full address.

 Mobile Number - If you prefer not to be called during certain hours, just make a note of this. If you have limited signal at home, you might want to provide an alternative number.

 Email Address - Please use, a professional looking email address – not one you used for social media, when you were 15. This will stay with you throughout your professional career.

We also prefer this to be a personal email, not your university one, as in a few years, we could lose touch.


List relevant skills & knowledge this will include systems and software you can use confidently or have used previously i.e. Word; Excel; Photoshop; etc.

 State your level in each honestly i.e. Beginner, Intermediate or Advanced.

 Employment History

List all work experience (both paid and unpaid) and voluntary work in reverse chronological order, beginning with your last position.

 Provide brief details of the companies you've worked for i.e. the name and type of business.

 State the dates of employment and include details of your key responsibilities and - more importantly - key achievements within the role.

 Ensure the details are factual and relevant to the specific role for which you’re applying as employers want concise information that sells your skills to them.


In reverse chronological order (most recent first) you should list:

 Any professional qualifications achieved or training courses attended, including any you’re currently studying

 Your university, course & degree gained (if applicable)

Your secondary and further education including vocational qualifications, A-Levels, GCSEs and the grades you obtained

 List any foreign languages

 Additional Information

you know along with your proficiency at each as either Basic, Conversational or Fluent.

 Any additional awards, skills or things you want to mention

Volunteer work or organisations you are involved in may go here.

Driving licence could also go here.


When you do secure an offer of employment from a business, they will want to speak with people who know you in a professional capacity and can vouch for your skills and experience as well as give an account of the kind of person you are.

These people are called referees and are usually previous employers, colleagues or teachers/lecturers. You can list these on your CV, if you wish.

Final Considerations

  • Make your CV look professional: focus on clear, consistent formatting.
  • Don't have unexplained gaps if you have been travelling or unemployed - include the details. Time out is often a good discussion point at interview.
  • Be concise: your CV should ideally be about 2-3 pages.
  • Short paragraphs and bullet points look neat and make the CV easy to read
  • Ensure you add achievements to each role citing tangible benefits they bought to the role.


Common CV Mistakes

Once you’ve completed the first draft of your new CV, read through the below list and check you haven’t made any of these common CV mistakes. You’ll be glad you did!


  • Writing “CV” or “Curriculum Vitae” at the top -This is a waste of space as the employer will understand the purpose of the document.
  • Adding in details such as age, marital status, religion etc. - These are irrelevant to an employer and take up valuable space on your CV. All the employer needs to know is how suited your skills & experiences are you for the job.
  • Only include information which is relevant to the job you’re applying for – the employer doesn’t want to know your life story!
  • Typos! - Using your computer’s spelling and grammar checker is good practice, but also get a friend or relative to read the CV through as they'll be able to spot things a computer can’t.
  • Don’t include a photo on your CV -This is irrelevant and some employers really don’t like it, and it takes up valuable space.
  • Don’t put your salary information on your CV - A savvy recruiter will be able to estimate from your job title & responsibilities what salary bracket you fall into.
  • Don’t stretch the truth - This will only serve to trip you up further down the job application process. For example, if you state your MS Excel skills are excellent when in truth, they're basic and you're presented with an Advanced Excel test at interview, you’re going to look pretty silly.
  • Don’t try to use humour in your CV - What people may find funny in person generally doesn’t come across well on paper. While humour may make your CV stand out to a recruiter, they'll probably remember you for all the wrong reasons.
  • Don’t include images/artwork on your CV - it again takes up valuable space, makes artwork harder to review, and messes with the ATS.


The challenge here is to retain an element of creativity to ‘stand out from the crowd’ whilst remembering the most important reason for a CV is to give details of your skills and experience don’t lose the important information by trying to be too creative.


Cover Letter

Now that you have perfected your CV, let’s look at the Cover Letter...

Many people think that in a digital age, the cover letter isn’t important – but you wouldn’t send a blank email with your CV attached would you – this is the place for your cover letter.

This  is the first thing a prospective employer will see, and they will judge you on it immediately. If they like what they read, they'll move on to your CV. If they don’t, your CV may not even be seen.

Begin your letter by making a clear reference to the job role you’re applying for e.g. Re: Junior Designer, Ted Baker London  - Make sure you change this for every role, there is nothing worse than getting a CV addressed to the wrong company. 

Stress that you’re very interested in the role and why you feel you are the best candidate – be realistic.

Highlight the skills you have and how they are relevant to the job but avoid quoting sections of you CV – elaborate

Explain briefly why you want to work for this company in particular – demonstrate your knowledge of the organization, do your research.

Briefly state your reasons for seeking a new role but avoid being negative about your current employer / situation.

Close by reiterating your interest and when you can make yourself available for interview should they wish to meet with you

It's always worth adapting your covering letter to ensure it doesn't look like a one-size-fits-all letter of introduction.   This may seem a lot of work but if you don’t tailor your covering letter it severely lessens its impact. Experienced recruiters will receive lots of standard covering letters and can spot these very easily.

Check and check again for spelling and grammar, you will be quickly rejected for not taking time and attention on your first communication with the employer.

Thank the reader for taking time to read your letter and CV and mention you look forward to hearing from them.

 Remember to attach your CV and portfolio or other documents if relevant.



LinkedIn is your most valuable professional social networking tool. Largely because of the speed you can react & engage with industry professionals and hiring managers.

  • You can connect with professionals in your sector
  • Get seen by employers looking to hire
  • Learn more about job roles and your industry
  • Keep up to date with news
  • Find and apply for jobs
  • Chat in real time, to your network
  • Reach out for help, advice, or promote yourself.


Firstly, as mentioned with regard to your CV, you’ll need a professional sounding email address. ​​Do not use inappropriate references in your email address. Create a new email account if you need to, something that will stay with you throughout your professional career.


The more detail you fill in on your LinkedIn profile, the more engagement you will get.


Upload a photo - You will get much better engagement if you include a photo. Your photo should be of you, on your own & be in a professional or relevant setting

 Write a Headline - Your headline is 120 characters, where you can grab the attention of your network – it should say, who you are, what you do and what you are looking for.

 Your headline should attract the kind of employers you want to work with and be engaging enough to get them to read more about you or connect with you.

 Your Summary

Your LinkedIn summary can match your CV profile, it’s to let people know who you are and what you are passionate about – where your skills are, and what you are looking for from your career, in a short, imaginative way.

 As with your CV, its better to write in the first person.

 You should use phrases that show you have some knowledge of the sector, include relevant keywords, and let your network know if and how you want to be contacted.

 Work Experience

List your work experience as is on your CV – its really important to align the two, recruiters looking at your CV will check your LinkedIn so make sure the two match perfectly.

 Include details of any work placements, shadowing or internships.


LinkedIn advise your list your achievements at work using the STAR method - Situation – Task – Action – Result.

 Portfolio - You should also add portfolio links or images here.


It’s possible to add up to 50 skills on your profile.  - LinkedIn recommend you add 5 skills or more if you want to appear in searches. You can look at some of the skills listed on similar job profile to be sure your skills are relevant.


Again its important this matches your CV , list you education and schools, as well as any awards or projects you have been involved in.


LinkedIn, like any other social network works better the more connections you have, reach out to people who interest you and start to build your network.

 Start with people you know at university or college, and through work experience / internships. These will be great people to get endorsements for your skills from, people who know you and can vouch for your skills

 As you meet people though networking or industry events, connect with them, you don’t need to send them an essay saying why, just send them a connection request, most people will be happy to grow their network too.

 Get Noticed

The best way to get noticed on linked is to be active, share news, updates, and comment, share and like other peoples posts.

 Creating your own content will get you noticed and raise your profile, but be sure you’re maintaining a positive, and professional image.

 You can also join groups within the LinkedIn Network, relevant to your career/industry.

 Search and Follow

You can look up people who interest you, business owners who inspire you, and its great practice to look up people who interview you.

 You can follow brands that you love, so you can keep up to date with news and job adverts, and look at the hiring managers at these companies.


How To Use Job Boards

There are a number of industry specific and generic job boards

Drapers / Drapers Jobs

Fashion Workie

Catwalk Yourself

Retail Choice



CV Library

Business of Fashion

Google Jobs



  • You can often access CV building tools & Tips on these job boards.
  • You can do a quick search on job title / location.
  • Then you can generally filter by, salary, distance/radius, hybrid/remote roles as well as date posted, and then you can sort by the same categories.
  • With the bigger job boards, they will learn your habits, applications, and suggest other roles that may suit you.
  • When you apply for a role, job boards, will generally save your CV so the next time you apply it will be much quicker
  • Be sure to update the saved version of your CV when you make any changes


Just because your CV is saved in the system, you should resist the temptation to apply for every job listed.

  • You may think this broadens the chances of being selected or shortlisted for a role, but, normally it’s the exact opposite. By applying for every job advertised, you look unsure about what it is you’re really looking for – be sure the roles you apply for are relevant to you as well as your skills and experience.


How To Identify Your Skills


This is all about extracting the detail from your day to day.


If your working experience is limited, your skills will mainly be from your studies, this probably includes things like meeting deadlines, creating presentations, and organizational skills. If you have worked in hospitality or retail, your key skills will be customer service, communication, punctuality.


Look for your skills in the job description:


Identify the key elements in the job advert and adapt your skills to fit.

  • If the job advert mentions this is working in a “fast-paced environment” it probably needs someone who works well under pressure, and has excellent time management skills.
  • If the job advert mentions you will have autonomy on your sector, then they are looking for someone who can manage their own workload, and meet strict deadlines.


Give Examples

As you add these skills to your CV, its worth noting why the made the list, most likely you will be asked at interview to give examples, have these ready in your mind.


  • Remember STAR – Situation, Task, Action, Result


Making a Career Change

It’s possible some of you are considering a career change, and you are well on the way to making that change, its valuable to understand which parts of your previous career path are relevant in your new direction, and which parts you would like to keep.


One of the best ways to start is to make a list of all the things you like and dislike about your last career, this will help you to move towards a role that uses the relevant skills you have gained, whilst leaving behind the parts you don’t enjoy. 


Many skills and disciplines are transferable so to understand the best route for you, it’s important to ask yourself why you want to make the switch.


If you are planning to change job discipline e.g from Sales to Marketing, but stay in the same sector, you will already have a wealth of industry specific knowledge and experience.


Be prepared that in order to make the move you might have to take a step down either in terms of responsibility or salary, but make the most of all your transferable skills.


Think about who you worked with in your past roles that have influenced the decision, think about how you worked with the people in your desired job role, and how you could make a difference.


If you are making a move of sector, you should try to understand where and how the two sectors have similarities, this will help you to identify your strongest transferable skills and how best you will fit into your new sector.


What have you learned in your previous career that can help the future you.

Posted by: People Marketing Fashion Recruitment