Is a CV right for you?
A CV or curriculum vitae (a Latin term meaning “course of life”) is a document that presents a full history of your academic credentials and entire career history. While the vast majority of job seekers in the U.S. will want to stick with a traditional resume, those pursuing specific job titles or positions should consider a CV.
CVs are most commonly used in the following job titles and industries:
- Professors and other academic
- Scientists and researchers
- Medical professionals
- Specific jobs in entertainment, travel, library sciences, engineering, military, architecture, publishing and government work
The CV is popular in fields where hiring managers seek specific credentials in top candidates, such as specific degrees and training, relevant outside skills, or a pertinent background in the field, for example, relevant publication experiences or research fellowships.
How we can help you create an impressive CV
LiveCareer offers an array of tools designed to help you craft a CV from start to finish, including:
Our customizable Resume Builder
Use LiveCareer’s Resume Builder to create a personalized CV that will help you stand out from the competition. With our step-by-step builder, we’ll help you choose a template, add customizable content, create relevant sections, and get simple guidance to create a resume that highlights your qualifications. For step-by-step directions on how to create a CV, scroll down.
CV Examples for hundreds of job titles
LiveCareer offers hundreds of sample CVs by category and job title that will help you decide how to customize your document.
Depending on your career, industry, and level of experience, formatting a CV can be a challenge, but LiveCareer offers several ways for you to model your CV for the best results.
How to Write a CV
Need some help crafting a compelling CV? LiveCareer has broken down the process for you and can help you prepare the 12 core sections you’ll find in most CV examples.
Our customers prove our CV Builder is better
Modifying your CV
Although CVs are different from resumes and include more sections, it’s possible — and easy — to use our Resume Builder to create and customize a CV. Follow these simple steps to build your CV:
- Click one of the “Create My CV” buttons. On the new page that appears, select “Create a New Resume” to begin the process.
- Follow the steps on the page and fill in the blanks. The builder will automatically guide you through creating the summary, adding your work history, skills and education.
- After writing your summary, you’ll be able to add extra sections and begin customizing your document. Click the box next to the section (or sections) you want to add to your CV or click “Add Your Own” to manually type in a section that isn’t on the menu.
- When you reach the end of the builder, you’ll see your CV, just as the example shows. If you go over a section with your mouse, that area will be selected, and an icon with arrows will pop up on your right. By pressing this icon, you’ll be able to move that section to a different part of the document. This way, you can organize the layout of your CV accordingly.
- If you would like to change the headers of any of your CV sections, simply hover over where it says “Summary,” “Education,” etc., until the Rename button appears. Then put your new title in the space provided and click enter.
- You can change the formatting of your document on the menu at the bottom of the page. After clicking the arrow next to “Normal,” press the “Custom” button. A new menu will appear, where you can adjust the margins, font size, font style and spacing. If you want to change the color, a menu with different options will appear when you click the “Color” tab.
- Be sure to click “Spell Check” at the top left to ensure no grammatical errors.
- Once you’re satisfied with your CV, you can click “Download” and save the document on your computer. If you don’t want to download it just yet, press “Save and Next” so your work isn’t lost.
How do I write my first CV?
Like with a resume, you can absolutely create a CV with little-to-no traditional work experience. Any volunteering, internships, or industry-relevant freelance work can fill out a work history section just as easily. Additionally, CVs emphasize the finer details of one’s education anyway, so feel free to delve into the specifics of your academic background if you have one.
What formatting and skills should a standard CV have?
Companies seek employees that fit in with their culture, so they want to see something more than just work experience on their CV. The hobbies and interests you choose to share should be as relevant as possible to both you and the position you’re applying for. For example, if you are applying for a travel-writing position, highlighting any secondary languages, an interest in history or photography are great relevant interests to add.
How should a CV look in 2021?
A good CV should include every element of your work and academic history along with other relevant background information. In some countries and for specified industries, they can also include your picture, hobbies, interests, and various background details. The structure of the CV is very dependent on your background and entire career history so keep your document grounded in what you want to highlight across not only your work history but also academia and relevant interests.
Do you need a new CV for every job?
It’s recommended that you write a new CV for each job you apply to that requires one. Your CV should be tailored to contain information about why you want to work at this particular company or in a certain position in the first place. Employers are adept at picking up on generic statements and will often not continue reading if your CV is full of generic information and things that aren’t relevant to what the company is looking for. When a job posting requires a CV over a resume, it’s usually because they are looking for specific levels of experience and accomplishment, so submitting the same CV to several jobs would not be a good idea.