Then And Now: How Have CVs Changed Over the Years
CV stands for Curriculum Vitae. It is a written overview of a person's educational qualifications and other experiences. Is also a complete profile of a candidate including his full name, phone number, address, email id, educational qualifications, hobbies, achievements, soft skills, languages known, computer skills, career objective, marital status etc. An ideal CV must not contain more than 2 or 3 A4 size pages. It can also be described as a short document that gives you a chance to show a prospective employer the best of what you've got. It sells your skills, experience, and shows them you're the right person for the job. Making a good impression is important in today's competitive job market. You might be asking, is a CV also a resume? Let’s see down here.
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Difference between CV and Resume
Although CV and Resume both are used for the same purpose, there is a little difference between them.
A CV and resume differ in layout, purpose, and length by which, a CV contains your educational and academic information as well as teaching and research experiences, awards, honors etc. and is static and doesn't change for different positions, it covers your entire career including educational and academic background and It is generally used for academic positions like faculty opening, internship, fellowship etc.
A Resume is a concise synopsis of most relevant professional experiences about the particular job for which you are applying, it can be changed according to the job situation because it is short and snappy, no particular format rule, its information only snuffles around the best suit of applicant. It is generally used for business industry, governmental and non-profit jobs.
Importance of a CV
Think of a CV as an essential piece of personal marketing to promote yourself to an employer so that you stand out and be called to meet. Almost every time you apply for a job, you will have to submit a CV, usually along with a customized cover letter. But why is a CV important? A CV allows you to highlight all of your relevant professional and academic experience, and show an employer that you're a great fit for the job. A well-crafted CV will:
Outline your skills and experience
Your CV should clearly show a potential employer your most relevant professional experience, skills and qualifications. Since employers may have a large number of CVs to look through, making this information stand out is vital to ensuring that your CV ends up on the 'yes' pile. A good CV might use formatting elements such as color and layout to make sure the employer sees the most important information.
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Highlighting your value
Instead of simply listing your previous roles and the responsibilities you held, you should make sure you mention 2-3 concrete things you achieved for your former employer in each role. For example, you might mention targets you hit or new processes you implemented. This shows your potential employer the value you'll bring to their company.
Catching the employer's attention
The most important information on your CV should appear towards the top of the page. This might include your profession, any relevant qualifications or a short personal statement that succinctly tells the employer why you'd be a great fit for the role. You may also choose to add a headshot or a professional logo or to use visual elements like colors or a creative layout to grab the employer's attention.
Positioning You as The Right Person For The Job
You may think that since you're sending your CV along with a customized cover letter, you can get away with sending the same CV with every job application. However, in order to show the potential employer that you are the right person for the role, it's a good idea to edit your CV each time you send it. Study the job posting carefully and consider what the company believes are the most important attributes for a candidate to have, then edit your CV so that it highlights the qualities they're looking for.
Landing you an interview
A CV is just the first step in the recruitment process, but if it's not well-written, logical and professional, you're unlikely to get any further. If you do it right, there's a good chance your potential employer will offer you an interview based on what they've learned about you from your CV.
Different types of CV
If you're crafting a new CV (or your first CV) you'll need to think about what type of CV you want to make. This will depend on your experience, circumstances, industry and personal preference. The different options include:
This is the most traditional type of CV, and is what most employers expect to see. A chronological CV lays out your professional experience in reverse chronological order so that your most recent job is at the top of the page. Ideally, a CV should go back around 10-15 years, or cover your last 5-6 positions.
Although most CVs are chronological, in certain situations you may decide to order them differently. For example, if you are changing careers, you might prioritize education and experience that is most relevant to the role you're applying for, moving less relevant experience further down the page. However, ensure that your CV is as clear as possible for potential employers.
Creative CVs heavily use visual elements such as pictures, graphs and colors to represent skills and experience. Creative CVs are common in fields such as marketing or design, but may not be a good idea for more formal industries like banking or law. You can get an idea of whether a creative CV would impress your potential employer by studying their job advert and website—if it's written very formally, it's probably best to stick to a traditional CV.
Many large companies use software for the initial sorting of CVs. This software searches electronic CVs for keywords, previous job titles and other information and decides whether they should get through to the next stage. This means that you need to present information in your CV that a computer can understand to increase its visibility.
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How Have CV changed over the years
As a job seeker, you want to put your best and most professional self forward on your resume. To ensure you secure interviews for those positions you most desire, you need a modern and professional CV. Let’s take a look at the stages at which a curriculum vitae has changed.
Catering your resume toward a specific career theme. Using the “one size fits all” approach of the past, is out of the question because talents have become specific. As a result, employers want to see how you meet or exceed their job requirements through relevant professional experience, education, expertise, aptitudes, and skills. The best CV strategies overcome any barriers that may exist. If the only education you have is a high school diploma, for example, adding that to your resume could hinder you in your job search. In this case, education is a barrier, so it would be best to leave it off your CV. If this is your situation, your strategy should focus on highlighting your years of relevant experience.
2. Personal Branding
Personal branding is essential in a competitive job market. Once you identify your brand, you have to reinforce it in your resume to help sell yourself to employers. Your personal brand is different from a career objective. An objective is an outdated section and should be eliminated. Your personal brand is a statement that defines what makes you unique, differentiates you from the competition, and lets your target audience know what you are capable of and the value you bring.
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3. Applicant Tracking Systems
Many employers today use an application tracking system (ATS) that will scan your resume to determine whether or not you possess the required or preferred job qualifications for which you are applying.
Optimizing your resume with relevant keywords in your desired industry and job title is the best way to “beat the ATS.” Keywords reflect the content of a job post, which includes the required or preferred number of years in a specific area as well as your education, certifications, areas of expertise, regulatory knowledge, critical skills, and technology proficiencies. This does not mean copying and pasting a job description or the bulleted responsibilities into your resume with hopes of your file getting hits. Instead, tell your career story while including relevant keywords throughout the resume.
4. Resume Length
According to LinkedIn and Indeed, employers spend an average of six seconds reviewing a resume. Six seconds! You can’t afford to have yours be a long, drawn-out document like the ones of the past. I often refer to these types of resumes as “career obituaries” because, while they may have a lot of great content, trying to review all of that can bore employers and cause them to toss your resume. Your resume should make a quick impression, and its content should be concise yet strong and impactful. Also, consider length, which is, ideally, one to two pages long.
It is not enough to include job descriptions in your experience section because doing so can make your resume look like those of every other applicant whose professional experience is similar to yours. Instead, write about your accomplishments, which can help take your resume from great to outstanding and can be the X-factor that separates you from the competition.
Think about challenges that you’ve encountered on the job. What actions did you independently implement to overcome them? Did you take on responsibilities that weren’t part of your job description? What were the results? Did you win an award? Did you quickly earn a promotion? Did you improve processes or productivity? If so, this is the content that you want in your resume, including metrics such as percentages and dollar figures if possible.
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6. Color and Graphics
Many job seekers ask if it is OK to use colors and graphics on a resume. The answer is “yes!” Colors and graphics can help give your resume a more modernized look instead of feeling outdated. Colors can reflect a career theme and reinforce your personal brand. For example, light green can reflect the healthcare industry, while blue can reflect loyalty and reliability. You can also use graphics, such as a table to list relevant skills and areas of expertise, a text box to include a quote from your manager about the value you’ve brought to the organization, or a chart to illustrate how you gradually increased sales.
But remember your strategy. Ensure your resume has the best use and balance of color. While graphics look good and can help illustrate your accomplishments, some ATS systems cannot read the text inside charts, graphs, tables, and text boxes. The white space on your resume is valuable real estate; therefore, be wise in how you use it if you’re considering adding graphics. For example, a graphic designer may want to show off their creative abilities on their resume, but this is not ideal for everyone else. The more you understand and adapt to the ways resumes have changed over time, the more you will increase your chances of having a successful job search and securing your most desired position.
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