There are many benefits to learning how to write a Spanish CV. Possessing a commanding knowledge of Spanish shows a dedication to the job in question. Plus, it makes things easier for employers in Spanish-speaking countries.
This goes beyond simply running text through a translator. There’s an art to composing a great resume or CV — particularly in a second language, as there are cultural norms that also need to be followed.
This is a job seeker’s one chance to show potential employers what makes them stand out from the rest. However, if that resume isn’t in the employer’s native language, it’s a safe bet it will end up at the bottom of the pile. This is certainly the case for anyone submitting a resume in English when the language in question is Spanish.
Here are some top tips on how to write a resume in Spanish.
How to create your Spanish resume
Before typing up your resume, it’s vital to know what information to include. Keep in mind that complex, technical jargon can often be difficult to translate into Spanish with total accuracy. This is why anyone writing a Spanish resume for the first time should have a native speaker proofread it before submitting to employers.
Information to include
Ensure that all information listed in the various sections of your resume is relevant and appears in order of importance. Here are the specific sections to include when considering how to write a Spanish CV:
- Photo/la foto: While it’s not mandatory to include a photo on the cover of a resume, it does help the employer humanise the applicant and can be quite common in Spanish-speaking countries. The employer sees the applicant as a person rather than a collection of words and bullet points. In a stack of resumes in which the majority of applicants have similar skills but only a handful have photos, this can help you stand out.
- Personal information/datos personales: Applicants should place their name and contact information at the top of the resume. Depending on the circumstances, it can consist of a home address, email address, and phone number, but will need to include nationality and your residency number if you’re already living abroad, such as your NIE number in Spain, or your RUT if you are in Chile, for example. This information is often the heading, or title, of the resume. It’s also where the applicant should attach a photo, if they decide to do so.
- Education/formación académica: This is one of the most important parts of the resume. Besides the section detailing professional experience, this is where most employers’ eyes first land. The applicant should list all relevant education history and credentials in reverse chronological order, with the most recent degree appearing first.
For each degree, include a short summary of the course of study and what year it was completed. If the applicant didn’t go to university or college, then this is the section where they should mention any relevant training or courses they have taken.
- Professional experience/experiencia profesional: Professional experience takes up the bulk of most resumes. This is where applicants list their work history relevant to the industry in question. Therefore, it’s not necessary for the applicant to mention every job they’ve ever had. It’s best to list only the most impressive and most recent work. Long gaps in employment history are red flags for employers.
Similar to the education section, applicants should list their employment history in reverse chronological order with a short summary describing the roles and responsibilities performed in each job.
- Skills/informática: Strong skills can really catch a potential employer’s attention, especially if the applicant is light on work experience. The applicant should pay close attention to the skills mentioned in the job description and list any he or she possesses. More general skills can apply here too. Some examples include clear communication, analytical thinking, leadership, etc. More specific skills include things like proficiency in specific computer programs and being licensed to use special equipment.
- Languages/idiomas: This section is important for a Spanish resume. It’s impressive to employers if an applicant is multilingual. Here, applicants should state the languages they speak and their level of proficiency, such as native, intermediate, or beginner. If you have been studying an official program such as with the Cervantes Institute, remember to list your level, such a B2 or C1 etc.
Writing your cover letter
A cover letter, also known as a carta de presentación in Spanish, needs to be short and formal. At the top right should be the applicant’s name, address, and telephone number. Below this should be the recruiter’s name, their company, and the date and job reference. The main text should mention the job the applicant is applying for, why they’re applying, and what makes them a suitable candidate. It should end with a formal Spanish expression, a signature, and a printed name beneath it.
Useful phrases to include
Wondering how to write a Spanish CV and covering letter? Below are some useful phrases:
- Estimado/a – Dear (in the plural form. This can be used alone or as estimado/a if you are writing to a specific person)
- A quien corresponda – To whom it may concern
- Si necesita más información, no dude en contactar conmigo – Should you need any further information, please do not hesitate to contact me
- Espero tener noticias suyas pronto – I look forward to hearing from you soon
- Saludos cordiales – Best regards
- Reciba un cordial saludo – Yours sincerely
Adapting your resume from English to Spanish
There are differences in expectations for Spanish versus English resumes. Therefore, it’s not necessary to translate a resume word for word from one language to the other. Instead, the applicant should adapt it.
For example, resumes written for employers in Spain tend to have less information than those written in English, and professional experience is not as detailed. When writing a resume in Spanish for a job application in Mexico, education is one of the most valued sections. In this case, the applicant should include as much relevant detail as possible.
Also, don’t worry if your CV in Spanish suddenly seems to be so much longer than your English version. This is because formal Spanish is often much wordier, so it takes up more space. This is expected in the Spanish-speaking world.
Write a perfect Spanish resume
The above tips on how to write a Spanish resume should allow any applicant to stand out amid the competition. You need to ensure you have the correct information, layout, and phrases that a Spanish employer is looking for. Once the resume is complete, the best thing to do is read over it, get a native speaker to proofread it, then read it over again for good measure. Keep making changes until the resume is perfect, and there’s no doubt it will impress potential employers. iScribo helps you to write properly your cv in Spanish.