What is a personal statement?

A personal statement, otherwise known as a personal profile, CV profile or even a career aim is essentially a bite sized representation of who you are as a professional, and what you have to offer in terms of experience and ambition.

Is a personal statement necessary?

The short answer is ‘you do not need to have a personal statement in your CV‘. However, studies show that on average recruiters spend less than 10 seconds looking at your CV. By including a snappy personal statement you can captivate the recruiter to spend more time on your CV.

How to write a personal statement

Your personal statement should include a brief overview of who you are, your strengths and any work experience and/or education you’ve got. Be sure to include skills you’ve gained, such as time management, customer service, teamwork, computer skills etc.

How to structure a personal statement

Personal statements are usually around four to six sentences in length, or between 100 to 200 words. A personal statement can be written in third person or first person, but should ideally remain consistent throughout the statement.

A personal statement should typically answer the following questions:

  • Why does the role interest you?
  • Why are you suited to the role?
  • Do you have any previous job or training that relates to the job role?
  • Have you taken part in any projects or activities that help demonstrate your capabilities?
  • What specialist skills do you have that make you an ideal candidate?

Personal statement examples:

Example 1:

‘I am a mature, positive and hardworking individual, who always strives to achieve the highest standard possible, at any given task. I possess excellent communication skills, and I have the ability and experience to relate to a wide range of people. I enjoy learning new things, I can work very well under pressure and I have the sales experience to handle customer complaints and solving problematic situations.’

Example 2:

‘I am an ambitious project manager looking to progress into a senior project position within the aerospace sector. I have developed communication skills when working in managerial positions at large engineering corporations, nurtured successful working relationships and, resultantly, possess an advantageous professional network. Due to over 12 years of experience within this industry, I am fully equipped with commercial awareness and product knowledge. I am looking to secure a challenging role in a market-leading aerospace company where I can bring fresh strategic vision and value to the business.’

Example 3:

‘I am an recent graduate in Computer Science from Westminster University, who took part in a 1 year placement with Samsung Electronics during which I was involved in designing websites and creating databases. I have strong technical skills as well as excellent interpersonal skills. I am eager to be challenged in order to grow and improve my communication and professional IT skills gained through previous experiences in the IT sector.’

Example 4:

‘A highly-skilled design engineer looking to resume a position in industrial design and construction. Extremely knowledgeable with twelve years industry experience. Possesses a wide skill set, including condition-based maintenance, through working on automated systems on large-scale design projects. Looking to re-establish a career in a progressive organisation which requires design expertise.’

Example 5:

‘I am a recent graduate with a 2:1 degree in Journalism from the University of Kent seeking an entry-level position in journalism. During my degree, I have developed an excellent eye for detail due to the heavy demands of assignments and research. Over the last year, I have also balanced an editing position at University of Kent’s media society, where I have written articles and managed a small team of writers, proving that I have potential to excel within a professional writing field. I am looking for a challenging, fast-paced environment within journalism to utilise my creative knowledge and develop my writing skill-set further.’