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Job Search 101: When a CV? When a Resume?

Job Search 101: When a CV? When a Resume?

Did you read the title and think: “But, aren’t a CV and resume the same thing?”

No.

There are some key differences between a CV and resume, which include:

  • How long they are
  • The information they include
  • What you’re applying for

Feel like you might have been using the wrong one?

Don’t worry.

This article will give you all the information you need to create a winning CV, and will tell you exactly when you should be using one.

Use a resume when you should be using a CV, and you could miss out on your dream job.

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Don’t let that happen.

What Is a CV, Exactly?

A CV, or curriculum vitae, provides a summary of your skills and experiences. It will usually be 2-3 pages long, and includes much more details than a resume.

Tailored Content for a Killer CV

Your CV should be tailored to be as relevant as possible to the position you’re applying for, but all CVs should include these basic things:

  • Your name, address and contact details
  • Education and qualifications
  • Your work history and experience
  • Information on your academic background. This can include research projects, teaching or lecturing experience, publications, presentations and awards.

A resume will include the first three points, but will be more tailored to the job you’re applying for, less thorough, and less focused on academic background.

When a CV, When a Resume?

When applying for a job outside of the US, a CV will usually be expected. Some jobs in the US, like those in medicine or academia, will ask for a CV.

For most jobs in the US, however, a resume is acceptable.

You wouldn’t write a three page CV to apply for a weekend waitressing job, but a CV would be perfect if you were applying for an academic research position [1]

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.If in doubt, get in touch with the recruiter for the organisation you’re applying to and ask for their preference.

The Essence of a Perfect CV

Worried your CV will go straight into the bin?

Follow the tips below to craft a CV that’s readable, relevant and persuasive.

  • Tailor your CV to the job you’re applying for. If you’re going for a teaching job, make sure to emphasise your experience in education.
  • Make sure it’s well-formatted. Make your CV as clear and easy to read as possible. Don’t waste time on fancy formatting, and don’t add pictures.
  • Use bullet points. Using lists to display your key achievements, skills and experience is a great way to quickly convey them to the person reading.
  • Don’t include irrelevant information. You don’t need to list every detail of everything you’ve ever done. Stick to what’s relevant to the position you’re applying for.

    What does a good CV look like?

    Checking out examples of winning CVs is a great way to shed some light on what yours should look like. We’ve curated some examples of excellent CVs below.

    Basic CV format

    Does education come before work experience? Where should my address be?

    Check out this example of a correctly formatted curriculum vitae to see exactly how your CV should be laid out.

    CVs for young people

    Don’t have any work experience? Feel like there’s nothing to write on your CV?

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    These sample CV templates will help if you’re still in school or have recently left.

    CVs for graduates

    Ready to enter the big wide world of employment? Make your first job search a successful one with these sample graduate CVs.

    CVs for academia

    Applying for a research position or PhD? These academic CV templates will show you everything you need to include.

    CVs for medical jobs

    Writing a medical CV can feel daunting, even if you know you’re fully qualified.

    Check out this page for advice on how to prepare and structure your medical CV.

    CVs for business

    What should you focus on in a business CV? How detailed should it be?

    These example business CVs will help you to write a winner.

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    CVs for a change of career

    Want to move industry or change your career, but worried it’ll never happen?

    With the right CV, you can find your dream job. Check out these sample career change CVs for inspiration.

    Don’t let your dream job pass you by because you didn’t write a good CV – or worse, you submitted a resume!

    Spend some time getting it right and your future self will thank you.

    Featured photo credit: Flaticon via flaticon.com

    Reference

    More by this author

    Eloise Best

    Eloise is an everyday health expert and runs My Vegan Supermarket, a vegan blog and database of supermarket products.

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    Last Updated on December 13, 2019

    7 Steps For Making a New Year’s Resolution and Keeping It

    7 Steps For Making a New Year’s Resolution and Keeping It

    Are you keen to reinvent yourself this year? Or at least use the new year as a long overdue excuse to get rid of bad habits or pick up new ones?

    Yes, it’s that time of year again. The time of year when we feel as if we have to turn over a new leaf. The time when we misguidedly imagine that the arrival of a new year will magically provide the catalyst, motivation and persistence we need to reinvent ourselves.

    Traditionally, New Year’s Day is styled as the ideal time to kick start a new phase in your life and the time when you must make your all important new year’s resolution. Unfortunately, the beginning of the year is also one of the worst times to make a major change in your habits because it’s often a relatively stressful time, right in the middle of the party and vacation season.

    Don’t set yourself up for failure this year by vowing to make huge changes that will be hard to keep. Instead follow these seven steps for successfully making a new year’s resolution you can stick to for good.

    1. Just Pick One Thing

    If you want to change your life or your lifestyle don’t try to change the whole thing at once. It won’t work. Instead pick one area of your life to change to begin with.

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    Make it something concrete so you know exactly what change you’re planning to make. If you’re successful with the first change you can go ahead and make another change after a month or so. By making small changes one after the other, you still have the chance to be a whole new you at the end of the year and it’s a much more realistic way of doing it.

    Don’t pick a New Year’s resolution that’s bound to fail either, like running a marathon if you’re 40lbs overweight and get out of breath walking upstairs. If that’s the case resolve to walk every day. When you’ve got that habit down pat you can graduate to running in short bursts, constant running by March or April and a marathon at the end of the year. What’s the one habit you most want to change?

    2. Plan Ahead

    To ensure success you need to research the change you’re making and plan ahead so you have the resources available when you need them. Here are a few things you should do to prepare and get all the systems in place ready to make your change.

    Read up on it – Go to the library and get books on the subject. Whether it’s quitting smoking, taking up running or yoga or becoming vegan there are books to help you prepare for it. Or use the Internet. If you do enough research you should even be looking forward to making the change.

    Plan for success – Get everything ready so things will run smoothly. If you’re taking up running make sure you have the trainers, clothes, hat, glasses, ipod loaded with energetic sounds at the ready. Then there can be no excuses.

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    3. Anticipate Problems

    There will be problems so make a list of what they’ll be. If you think about it, you’ll be able to anticipate problems at certain times of the day, with specific people or in special situations. Once you’ve identified the times that will probably be hard work out ways to cope with them when they inevitably crop up.

    4. Pick a Start Date

    You don’t have to make these changes on New Year’s Day. That’s the conventional wisdom, but if you truly want to make changes then pick a day when you know you’ll be well-rested, enthusiastic and surrounded by positive people. I’ll be waiting until my kids go back to school in February.

    Sometimes picking a date doesn’t work. It’s better to wait until your whole mind and body are fully ready to take on the challenge. You’ll know when it is when the time comes.

    5. Go for It

    On the big day go for it 100%. Make a commitment and write it down on a card. You just need one short phrase you can carry in your wallet. Or keep it in your car, by your bed and on your bathroom mirror too for an extra dose of positive reinforcement.

    Your commitment card will say something like:

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    • I enjoy a clean, smoke-free life.
    • I stay calm and in control even under times of stress.
    • I’m committed to learning how to run my own business.
    • I meditate daily.

    6. Accept Failure

    If you do fail and sneak a cigarette, miss a walk or shout at the kids one morning don’t hate yourself for it. Make a note of the triggers that caused this set back and vow to learn a lesson from them.

    If you know that alcohol makes you crave cigarettes and oversleep the next day cut back on it. If you know the morning rush before school makes you shout then get up earlier or prepare things the night before to make it easier on you.

    Perseverance is the key to success. Try again, keep trying and you will succeed.

    7. Plan Rewards

    Small rewards are great encouragement to keep you going during the hardest first days. After that you can probably reward yourself once a week with a magazine, a long-distance call to a supportive friend, a siesta, a trip to the movies or whatever makes you tick.

    Later you can change the rewards to monthly and then at the end of the year you can pick an anniversary reward. Something that you’ll look forward to. You deserve it and you’ll have earned it.

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    Whatever your plans and goals are for this year, I’d do wish you luck with them but remember, it’s your life and you make your own luck.

    Decide what you want to do this year, plan how to get it and go for it. I’ll definitely be cheering you on.

    Are you planning to make a New Year’s resolution? What is it and is it something you’ve tried to do before or something new? Why not pick one from this list: 50 New Year’s Resolution Ideas And How To Achieve Each Of Them

    Featured photo credit: Ian Schneider via unsplash.com

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