Defining Your Career Journey: CV vs. Resume Explained

Embarking on your job hunt often brings up the question: should you use a CV or a Resume? While they might seem like the same thing, they serve different purposes and differ greatly in content, format, and length. This blog post aims to clear up any confusion surrounding these two vital career documents. We’ll look at the basics of a CV and a Resume, discuss the key inclusions for each, dive into their various types, and assist you in choosing the right document for different job applications. By understanding the nuances between CVs and Resumes, you can strategically select the one that will best highlight your skills and experiences, propelling you towards your dream job!

  1. The CV Explained
    Also known as a Curriculum Vitae, a CV is a thorough document that details your entire professional and academic journey. Unlike a resume, a CV doesn’t focus on brevity. It includes your career history, academic successes, awards, publications, and more. It’s the standard document for academic, scientific, or research roles, as it provides a detailed overview of your career, helping potential employers comprehend your diverse range of skills, experience, and academic acumen. A CV is basically a platform where you can portray the wide scope of your professional life without worrying about length constraints. It aims to present a detailed, comprehensive picture of your career.
  2. What to Include in a CV?
    -A CV should encompass your personal details, contact information, educational history, work experience, skills, certifications, achievements, and references. It often includes sections for publications, presentations, conferences attended, and other industry-specific details. Essentially, a CV is an elaborate account of your professional journey, aiming to capture all aspects of your career. When composing your CV, bear in mind the goal is to exhibit a comprehensive image of your professional trajectory. Make sure to include everything from your employment history, educational achievements, to professional skills, facilitating prospective employers in comprehending the full extent of your qualifications.

3.The Various Types of CVs
-CVs primarily come in two forms: chronological and skills-based:

Chronological CV :
-A chronological CV unfolds your work history in reverse chronological order. If you’ve had a straightforward career path in a particular field, this type is an ideal choice. It underlines career progression and a steady history of employment, rendering it the most traditional and universally accepted CV format.

Skills-based CV :
-Also referred to as a functional CV, a skills-based CV highlights skills and competencies over work history. This format is beneficial if you’re switching industries or have gaps in your work history. By concentrating on transferable skills, you can illustrate your aptness for the job, even with a less conventional career path.

-The type of CV you choose hinges on your career trajectory and the nature of the job you’re seeking. For instance, a chronological CV works best for a straightforward career path, whereas a skills-based CV is preferable when changing industries or dealing with employment gaps.

  1. What is a Resume?
    -A resume, unlike a CV, is a concise document summarizing your qualifications, skills, and experiences tailored to the job you’re targeting. Typically, a resume is one to two pages long, providing a snapshot of your professional journey. Its purpose is to quickly engage potential employers by exhibiting the most relevant aspects of your career history, skills, and achievements. Resumes are usually favored in non-academic fields where recruiters sift through a large number of applications promptly. By focusing on brevity and relevance, a resume effectively emphasizes the most noteworthy points of your career.
  2. What to Include in a Resume?
    – A standard resume should include your contact information, a summary or objective statement, work experience, education, and skills. Each section should be tailored to highlight the most relevant and impressive details of your career. Unlike a CV, a resume should be customized for the specific job you’re applying for. This involves highlighting skills and experiences that align with the job description, thereby demonstrating how your qualifications make you an ideal candidate.
  3. Different Types of Resumes

-Resumes can be chronological, functional, or a combination of both:

Chronological Resume: A chronological resume presents your work history in reverse chronological order. This layout emphasizes career progression and is optimal if you’ve had a steady work trajectory in a particular field.

Functional Resume: Functional resumes highlight skills and achievements over a chronological work history. This type is ideal for those with employment gaps or contemplating a career change.

Combination Resume: A combination resume merges elements of the chronological and functional formats. It’s useful if you have a variety of skills and experiences you want to emphasize.

Choosing between a CV and a resume often depends on the job you’re applying for, the norms of your industry, and even the country you’re in. Academic, scientific, and international roles usually prefer a CV due to its detailed nature. Conversely, resumes are generally favored in non-academic sectors, particularly in the US, where concise, tailored documents are appreciated due to the volume of applications.


Understanding the differences between a CV and a Resume can help you make a more informed choice when applying for jobs. While a CV offers a detailed portrayal of your career journey, a Resume presents a succinct summary of your relevant skills and experiences. Which you choose depends on your industry, the job role, and the specific requirements outlined in the job description. If you need assistance creating a professional CV or Resume, feel free to get in touch. We’re here to guide you and help you make the best first impression on potential employers.

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