Getting Shortlisted for Donor-funded Projects: Tips from a Top Recruiter | Post Webinar Release

By Sam Ursu

Getting Shortlisted for Donor-funded Projects: Tips from a Top Recruiter | Post Webinar Release

Agriconsulting Europe (AESEA) is a leading international development consulting firm that has been in operation since 1994. AESA’s key areas of excellence include policy development, technical assistance for sustainable rural, social, and economic development, as well as provision of high-quality management and advisory services for international cooperation projects.

Agriconsulting Europe has built their reputation on the successful implementation of multi-disciplinary projects for a wide variety of clients across the private and public sector in more than 120 countries.

DevelopmentAid, as the leading provider of business intelligence and recruitment solutions in the development sector, invited Anastasia Bahu (Recruitment Advisor for Agriconsulting Europe), to discuss how recruiters evaluate a candidate’s CV and how an effective CV can help in getting a candidate short-listed for donor-funded projects.

An overview of the recruiting process

Topics discussed during the webinar included:

  • Understanding the difference between active and passive sourcing of job opportunities
  • How to use LinkedIn to grow your professional network
  • Subscribing to professional job boards
  • Accessing different organizational databases to discover job opportunities
  • Using DevelopmentAid’s CV Broadcast service to get noticed

Applying for a role in a given tender

Anastasia Bahu pointed out the importance of a number of factors while applying for a given tender, particularly:

  • Checking for any potential conflicts of interest
  • The importance of complying with ToR requirements
  • Meeting project deadlines
  • Ensuring that your CV is both in the right format and has the proper length
  • Including updated names and contact information in the references portion of your CV
  • Attaching supporting documents to your CV (certificates, diplomas, etc.)

The CV evaluation process

Referring to the way recruiters evaluate CVs, Anastasia touched upon the use of a scoring grid that weighs a candidate’s relevance and fit for the job, including:

  • Their qualifications and skills
  • Their professional experience (general)
  • Their professional experience specific to the job

Fig.1. Example of evaluation grid

Source: DevelopmentAid

Participants also learned that recruiters evaluate CVs on several key axis, including:

  • Years of experience in a given sector
  • Experience (or lack thereof) of working in a given country
  • Any relevant prior work with the employer
  • Years of experience in similar roles
  • Education level
  • Language(s) proficiency

CV Tailoring

The importance of tailoring (customizing) their CVs for every job opportunity/employer was also highlighted. Some of the reasons why CV tailoring is so important include:

  • To emphasize information relevant to the job opportunity
  • To remove information irrelevant to the job opportunity
  • To make it easier for recruiters to understand the candidate’s relevant work experience
  • To make the CV look professional and thus increase the candidate’s credibility
  • To help the candidate’s CV stand out in a crowded field

Other tips concerning CV tailoring that were shared with participants included:

  • Using the correct format
  • Using a standard font with black text (i.e. no colored text)
  • How to emphasize relevant experience
  • Highlighting keywords
  • The importance of using a spell checker and a grammar checker before submission

Participants also learned which information should not be included in their CV, including:

  • The names of their parents
  • Information about their religious affiliation (or lack thereof)
  • Passport information
  • Personal hobbies
  • An excessive number of personal/professional references
  • An excessive number of publications
  • Pictures, charts, photos, and any other visual elements
  • Expired memberships
  • Irrelevant certifications or training
  • Falsifying their job/professional experience

Lastly, participants learned about how professional recruiters can help them land jobs and get shortlisted for donor-funded projects/tenders.

For those who did not have the opportunity to join us for this online event, a link to the recorded version can be found here. The presentation materials used during this webinar can be requested at

DevelopmentAid is the leading provider of business intelligence and recruitment tools designed to assist all those active in the development sector. Join today and gain access to exclusive information on the full array of upcoming funding opportunities from over 200 international donors.