Resume vs. CV: What are the Differences Between Them?


What is CV?

A Curriculum Vitae, commonly known as CV means the course of life in the Latin Dictionary. This is a lengthy document, which contains thorough and extensive detail of your life, which covers all your awards, achievements, and previous work experience. This document is organized in a chronological order, and is formatted in a way which makes it easier for the person reading to get a full review of the individual’s life, education, and work career. The CV remains the same, even if one is applying for various positions; the difference exists in the cover letter.

What is a Resume?

A Resume is a very short and brief document. Unlike a CV, a Resume is to be kept of only one page maximum. If you believe that adding extra information will be useful, only then can the resume be of two pages (those cases are very rare).  The main aim of the resume is for it to stand out, make sure that the document provides concise detail of the individual applying. The resume should be formatted in a way according to the position applied for, only the most applicable work experience and skills are highlighted. Thus, for each position applied the resume changes to fit the requirements of the particular post. A resume is a custom built document and in contrast to the CV, does not need to be in a chronological order and should not include all your education, life experiences and career. An outstanding resume should include the previous work contribution that can add value and be relevant for the position applied for.  A resume is submitted alongside a cover letter which should cover your objective, the reason you have applied for the job and why you’re the most suitable candidate.

What should be included in a CV?

The person applying for a job should include his/her full name, the valid and most recent contact information, professional title (that normally includes which position is being applied for), the objective (a short introduction of the person), research interests, education (starting from the most recent), Publication (research papers, articles, blogs, books that have been published), any teaching experience (in school, university), conferences or short courses that have been attended, any skills that might be valuable for the organization applying to, certificates received, extra set or knowledge of languages and most importantly, references (a person or an organization that can vouch for the person applying).

What should be included in a Resume?

A resume should include your full name, the name of the position you have applied for, the most recent contact information, a short summary of yourself, work experience (relevant to the position you have applied for), education, skills (one again relevant to the job applied for), extra language and lastly certificates (that can add value in your resume for you to get chosen).

Usage of a Resume and CV over the world

In the United States and Canada, the most preferred document is a Resume. The document should be short, accurately formatted, and precise. However when citizens of both the countries apply for jobs outside their country, they tend to use a CV.  Moreover, when applying for academic positions, a CV should be used.

In the United Kingdom, New Zealand, Ireland and Germany, a CV is used when applying to any sort of job position; a resume is rarely used or demanded.  In all of Europe, CVs are preferred.

In countries like India, South Africa and Australia, both the documents are used, depending on the position or organization applying to. When one is applying in the private sector, resumes are used whilst a CV is used when applying for jobs in the public sector.

How to Write a Good Resume

Your resume should be written according to the needs of the organizations where you have applied. For example if you applied for a teaching position, make sure your resume covers your previous teaching experience, your education or any educational courses or certificates you have received. Avoid adding any other irrelevant information that does not meet the criteria for the job description. Usually organizations or companies have sample resumes attached on their websites, so try using those rather than another template.

How to write a Good CV

If you’re applying for an international job outside your country of residence, add personal information and give details’ of where you live, the employer would like to know you. However if you’re applying, for example in a fellowship, don’t add personal information. Even though the CV is a lengthy document, make sure that it does not exceed more than 2-3 pages and keep updating it with the most recent information.

CV and Resume Writing Tips

Regardless of the document that you are creating, a CV or a Resume should grab the attention of the employer and make sure that it helps you stand out from the rest of the individuals applying.

  1. Your Resume should be according to the position you have applied for.

This is mostly suitable when writing a Resume because a resume is very short so it should first cover the points that relate to the job description.

  1. Use a Template

Nowadays, there are a number of websites from where you can download a template which can help you in constructing a CV or a Resume. This will help you structure your document in a very organized manner; will help the person reading your document see your skills and qualifications.

  1. Read you document thoroughly

Before sending you resume or CV to the organization, make sure that you proof read it at least five times.  Having done that, ask a family member or a friend to read your document for you and edit anything that requires changing. The document should be free of any grammatical or spelling mistake. It should be documented and structured in a way so that your skills stand out, for example you might want to use bullet points when writing down your previous work experience. This process is very important because a mistake in your CV or resume can negatively affect your image and may reduce your chances of getting hired.

What you think? Which one would b more suitable for you, a resume or CV?  Before you start creating any one of it, ensure that the one you are opting for is relative for your profession or not.

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