What Can Help You Better – A Resume Or CV?

Ever had a grape? If you did, was it green or black? If you had both, can you tell the difference in taste, texture and health benefits from both? This is pretty much the difference between a Resume and a Curriculum Vitae. Even though both are for the same purpose, i.e.; showcasing you, both have their own distinct features that often are misinterpreted. This often leads to failure at the first stage of job application itself. So, which one helps you better? Let’s understand in detail.

A Resume

Derived from the French dialect, a Resume is a concise document of your professional career and skill sets that ideally does not exceed one page. It is a document that includes brief points for the recruiter to quickly and clearly make decisions about your profile. In short, a Resume is your professional catchphrase that decides in a matter of minutes whether the recruiter likes you or not.

Curriculum Vitae

Derived from the Latin dialect, a CV is an expanded version of your Resume that can be a two-pager or even more. It includes detailed explanation, references, and notes of your professional career for a person to understand everything about you. It includes your personal aspirations, skills, talents even if they are not connected to your profession. In short, A Curriculum Vitae is a form of your biography that intrigues a recruiter on knowing more about you both professionally and personally.

What’s Best for you?

The answer is both. It only depends on what the recruiter wants to know. In jobs that are highly academic in nature, a CV is the usual requirement. In other jobs, a Resume is the first choice of requirement. So, what are the major distinctions that make them unique from each other?


A resume is usually a single pager document with least content possible as a priority. In rare cases, a resume may go to the length of two pages, but may also lose its strength. Treat every word you write in your resume as creatively written copy – Less words with more impact.

A CV is a multi-page document with most content you can use with regards to relevancy as priority. With no restriction on length, your CV can go to any length you feel necessary, unless it becomes a biographical novel of your own. Treat it as a piece of content about you in an orderly fashion with a long form explanation of each aspect – Impress more by expressing more.


A Resume has a clear cut purpose of becoming a written form document of your professional self. The ingredients it can include should always reflect on your professional career in the form of experience, skills, talent, hobbies etc.

A CV on the other hand has no limitation in terms of ingredients. You can include every aspect of your life that you feel is expressible including professional career but not limited to it. Personal achievements, interests, aspirations, and even liking can be included in it as long as you do not drive boredom of irrelevance from it.


A Resume has no fixed layout or chronology. It can be shuffled around with what you wish to display first based on the job that you are applying to. In industry norms, it is recommended to customize your resume for each job that you are applying for. To do that, the order of layout cannot be restricted.

A CV follows a static layout order and chronology. Usually, the job that you are applying for lets you know what to include in your CV. Note that a CV is created based on demand. So, one should always create their CV thinking of every important aspect, and then trim them down based on individual requirements of the recruiters. In terms of chronology, your CV should follow the below order as per standard industry norms:

  • Personal Details (Name, Contact info, Address)
  • Brief introduction
  • Professional Career
  • Academic Career
  • Extracurriculars
  • Achievements
  • Skills
  • Talents
  • Hobbies
  • Additional Personal information

Resume Or CV?

Now that you know the distinct features of the green and the black grapes, you can decide on what you need for the current situation. This will ensure that you provide the recruiter what he/she is looking for. If you want to build your resume for free, and keep it saved on the cloud for customizing whenever you need, you can get your resume builder by signing up on Vasitum.

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