How to adapt your CV for a career change

Written by: Jennifer Jackson
Published on: 19 Dec 2022

Penguin Recruitment

Moving into planning or changing roles within the industry? Katy Thorne, senior consultant at Penguin Recruitment, shares top tips on how to tailor your CV.


Specialist town planning recruitment firm, Penguin Recruitment, expects many people to move into the town planning sector from other sectors in 2023, partly due to the shortage of talent within this market.

We spoke to Katy Thorne, senior consultant at Penguin Recruitment, for her advice on how to tailor your CV for a career change.

“We find that a lot of people can transition into town planning from urban design and architecture as there is some crossover between these industries”, explains Thorne.

Highlight relevant qualifications for the role

As a recruiter, there are certain things she looks for from career-changers. “We often see job changes into the industry”, she says, “but for this to be valid we do need candidates to have relevant degrees or equivalent qualifications in order to be successful, so make sure you highlight these on your CV”.

Thorne adds that if you have experience that is transferable, either within the public or private sector, this can also be useful, but ultimately you do need the right qualifications.

Focus on your transferable interpersonal skills

If you’re moving from one career path to another and you’re just getting started on updating your CV, Thorne advises to position the most relevant experience at the top of the page - this may include: studying an MSc in Planning or BSc in Geography, for example. “This will show the employer your commitment to transferring sectors, since a lot of other information about you may not be as relevant”, she says.

Thorne also advises that you emphasise your transferable interpersonal skills, such as people skills, interests, extra activities you’re involved in and time management - along with examples where possible.

Top tips

In order to consider a career change, Thorne says you may need to consider a salary drop as you will most likely be entering a new career at a graduate level or an entry level role.

“It would also be beneficial to explain on your CV what you hope to get out of a career in planning, why you would like to join planning, and why you are looking to leave your current role”, Thorne adds.

If you’re looking for a career change and would like some advice, please contact Katy Thorne at Penguin Recruitment:

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