How To Write A CV (With Template, Sample And Tips)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 22 November 2021

Applying for a job by sending out your CV to potential recruiters can be a daunting task. Irrespective of your profession or the company you are applying for, the first thing most hiring managers are likely to notice is your CV, thus, it must be perfect. Having a well-written CV can help increase your chances of getting a call for an interview with your potential employers. In this article, we discuss a CV, its different types, why it is essential, how to write a CV and provide you with a template, sample and some tips.

What is a CV and why is it important?

CV is short for curriculum vitae, a Latin term that means course of life. It summarises your professional experience, education, significant awards and honours, scholarships, grants, research, projects and publications in a single document. A CV may also include your contact details and an objective statement. In short, a CV is a brief document that allows you to showcase yourself in front of a potential employer.

Preparing your CV before you apply for the job you want is very important since it sets you apart from the swarm of applications for a particular job. It advertises your skills, talents and expertise and exhibits your suitability for the position. When assessing job applications, employers often request a CV and shortlist the candidates based on that.

How to write a CV

Knowing how to write a good CV can help you go further in your career. You can review the points given below for writing a CV:

1. Introduce yourself with a header

Begin your CV by including your full name and other details like your job or professional title, phone numbers, home address, email address and links to your social media profile at the header. This allows recruiters to know who you are and how to contact you in one look. You can also choose to add a link to your website or your portfolio. Doing so gives them an idea of the quality of the work you have done so far.

2. Include a professional profile (optional)

Consider adding a professional summary to your CV, which is a brief yet informative statement that emphasises your essential skills and separates you from the competition. It highlights a few key accomplishments and expresses your career goals. This typically enables hiring managers to give your CV a quick glance and understand your candidature.

Related: How To Write A Resume Headline

3. List your employment history

Next, list your work experience in reverse chronological order. Include your job title, the name of the company, how long you have worked there and the tasks and responsibilities you handled on a day-to-day basis. This lets your prospective employers get an idea of your professional journey and determine whether your work experience is relevant to the post you have applied for and if you are a suitable candidate for the position.

4. Detail your educational qualifications

Provide an ordered list of your education details with the highest degree on top. Include the names of the institution, the degree you obtained and the marks you scored. If you are currently pursuing or have pursued a diploma or a certificate course, you can add that too here.

5. Add relevant skills and achievements

List any skills that can be helpful for the intended role, such as photography and editing skills, foreign languages or coding. To make yourself a more appealing candidate, try to include talents that apply to the job description. Consider adding both hard and soft skills, as it can make you look like a well-rounded, desirable candidate.

6. Include additional details

Next, you can include relevant sections and organise the details with the help of bulleted lists. This could be anything like awards and honours or grants and scholarships that you may have received. You can also include your licences and certifications and add details of any volunteer work that you do. This can make your CV look impressive and also be a good topic of discussion during the interview.

Read More: Soft Skills: Definitions And Examples

Types of CV formats

Here are two standard formats that you can use to craft an impressive CV:

  • Chronological CV: If your work history reflects steady growth in your area of expertise and you have proven work experience in the same sector, you may consider choosing a work-focused (chronological) format for your CV. It is ideal for candidates who wish to advance in the same career or industry.

  • Functional CV: If you have finished college and are exploring the professional workforce for the first time, have many employment gaps, or want to change careers, a functional or skill-focused CV may be the best option for you. A functional CV format focuses on your skills rather than the employment history.

    Related: Curriculum Vitae (CV) Format Guide (With Examples And Tips)

Tips for writing a good CV

Here are some tips and tricks to help you draft a CV:

  • Use professional fonts. Consider using uniformly sized, professional-looking fonts like Calibri or Arial in dark colours.

  • Choose the best format. See if using a chronological or a functional format is the right option for you.

  • Include relevant skills. Look at the most critical details and skills that apply to your desired job and try focusing on them.

  • Use active language. Try using active verbs when presenting your skills and achievements.

  • Make it easy to scan. Consider using bullet points and short sentences to list information. You may also choose to add icons to the section headers.

  • Use a professional email address. Consider creating a new email address if your email id is inappropriate for professional use.

  • Proofread. Consider using a grammar and spell checker or having a friend read through your CV to catch any errors.

Read More: What Is A CV?

CV Template

Here is a template for drafting a CV that you can edit and use according to your requirements:

[Name]
[Designation]
[Address]
[Phone number]
[Email address]

Professional summary
[Introduce yourself, highlight your best qualifications and explain why you are a fit for the job]

Work experience
[Job title] [Date of employment]
[Name of employer] [City and state of employer]
[Description of your responsibilities and accomplishments]

Education
[Title of degree] [Dates attended]
[School name]
[Title of dissertation or thesis]

Skills
[Relevant skills]

Hobbies & Personal interests
[Short paragraph or bullet points on your pursuits]

Volunteer Work
[Position held or job performed] [Dates of service]
[Organisation] [City and state]

Accomplishments
[List your achievements]

Publications
[Authors with your name in bold] [Year of publication] [Title of article] [Publishing journal]

Awards and honours
[Name of award] [year]

CV sample

Here is a CV sample you can follow:

Ashish Gupta
ashish.gupta@email.com
+91-6787787767

Objective
To carve a niche in the corporate world by contributing my best to achieve excellent results, enhance and expand my skills and knowledge and prove to be an asset to the organisation.

Professional synopsis:

  • A dynamic professional with years of experience in the areas of data analysis, business research, competitive analysis and project management

  • Hands-on experience of various tools and databases, including SQL, SAS, SPSS, Excel, Tableau, Hoovers, Dow Jones Factiva

Professional experience
Superior Technologies Gurgaon, India
Business analyst
March 2016 to present

  • handled ad hoc research projects in a client-facing environment, including needs assessment, list generation and identification of targets, competitive landscape and business development

  • analysing and synthesising the data using MS Office and bringing out value-added insights to the client

  • preparing competitive intelligence reports, competitor analysis, SWOT analysis, industry trend analysis and business opportunity analysis

  • forecasting, scheduling and setting up the team targets, project deadlines

  • adept at working with senior management, business heads, both onshore and offshore, for decision support initiatives, analysis of existing business and new business proposals

  • responsible for loading, extracting and validating client data and carrying out specified data processing and statistical techniques

Projects undertaken

  • TSB data integration project

  • big four analysis

  • e-payment platform analysis

Evolve India Ltd. Delhi, India
Qualitative research analyst
Jan 2013 to March 2015

  • preparation of reports, charts for the submission to the client as per the required templates

  • working in different projects relating to IT, sales, industry trends

Certifications

  • awarded National Eligibility Ticket for Lectureship (USS NET) in September 2013 by the University Scholarship Society

Scholastics

  • Post-Graduate Diploma in Management (2010-12) from Sahara Institute of Management, New Delhi

  • Bachelors in Business Administration (2007-10) from Sitara University, Rohtak

  • CBSE XII (Commerce with Mathematics) in 2007 from Springvalley College, Gallahang

  • CBSE X in 2005 from Happiness School, Bareilly

Technical credentials

  • proficient with. MS Office

  • working knowledge of VBA Macros

  • working knowledge of SQL

Co-curricular activities

  • worked as an instructor for aptitude and reasoning at Harrow Institute, Faridabad, from May 2010 to June 2011

    Please note that none of the companies mentioned in this article are affiliated with Indeed.