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Difference between CV and Resume (CV vs Resume). When to use which one?

A query most of the job seekers and professionals have, is ‘What is the difference between CV and Resume?’ and which one to choose. In this blog, I’ll give some important information on the topic: CV vs Resume so that your vision will be clear about them and will help you understand which one to choose in which situation. Although both the documents play different roles in different conditions, it is very important to get some knowledge about them.

Do you ever wonder why a CV is used in the UK and Resumes are used in the USA for applying for jobs? What is the difference between CV and resume? Before proceeding to the answer, let me clear some points here.

What is a CV (Curriculum Vitae)?

A CV (Curriculum Vitae), is a Latin phrase which means ‘Course of life’. This is a detailed document that can be laid over two or more pages which represents a detailed overview of your achievements, accomplishments, awards, honors, education and is more than just a career biography.

A CV is a static document which doesn’t change for different job role. The only thing needs to be changed is the Cover Letter for applying for any job role using a CV.

What is a Resume?

‘Resume’ is a french word which means a short statement of the important details or you can call it a ‘sum up’. It is a concise document that should not be longer than one or two pages because its purpose is to give an employer a quick glance on your career and make you stand out from the competition.

A proper Resume contains a short description of your education, qualification, professional experience and sometimes your personal interests, research, blogs, and competencies. It is not a static document and needs to be changed according to every job position you are applying for. This makes it easy to scan for an employer and delivers a clear idea of your skills.

      Factors       CV Resume
Much Longer in length as it contains
detailed information.
Relatively shorter and to-the-point.
Max 2 pager.
It focuses on career details.
Focuses on professional skills.
A CV is made in Chronological order.
A Resume can be made in Chronological,
Functional or Combined order.
It contains detailed professional experience.
It contains company name, designation, and duration.
Represented chronologically.
The highest proficiency skill is prioritized.
Contact Info.
Multiple contact information can be added.
Email and phone number is sufficient.
I hope the above information clears your concept. Now let’s see which information should be added to CV and Resumes.

Contents of a CV (Curriculum Vitae):

A proper CV should contain the detailes of –

  • Contact information
  • Educational information
  • Work experience,
  • Projects
  • Honors
  • Awards
  • Certifications
  • Fellowships
  • Professional memberships

Contents of a Resume:

A proper Resume should contain summarized information on –
  • Contact information
  • Education
  • Work experience
  • Core competencies and
  • Professional skills

When should you use a CV?

A CV(Curriculum Vitae) can be used in the academic industry where your educational background and career details play an important role. This can help the employer understand your growth from the beginning of your career and if you are the best fit for the job role or not because the CV is a static document and does not change according to the job role.

When should you use a Resume?

If you are applying for a technical or creative sector, Resumes should be your best choice. A well-designed resume focuses on your skills and competencies which are the most important factors for these industries. A proper resume attracts recruiters easily and makes you one step ahead of other job seekers.

Usage around the world:

Millions of CVs and Resumes are used daily across the world. Though, I have mentioned earlier that some job roles prefer CVs and some prefer Resumes, still different countries have different rules.

Here is the list below:

      Country       CV or Resume Format
Functional, Reverse Chronological
Functional, Reverse Chronological
Functional, Reverse Chronological
Functional, Chronological
Reverse Chronological


Let me help you. Look, it is a safer option to carry both as you may not be sure which one to submit. Resume is more preferable these days because an employer doesn’t have much time to go through one’s document as there is a large number of applications received for a particular position. So the first impression plays an important role. Sometimes, they use ATS to filter candidates. So, better stick to a professional resume and keep a backup CV. It will never fail.

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