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CV vs. Resume: Which One Should You Use?

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If you’ve had your time going through a myriad of vacancy announcements or job ads in the Australian job market, there’s a high chance you have seen both the terms CV and resume being used interchangeably.

CVs vs. Resumes

Length

CVs are inherently more expansive, accommodating a detailed account of an individual’s academic and professional journey. The standard for CVs in Australia and New Zealand is 2 to 4 pages depending on the candidate’s professional experience (more the experience, longer the CV and vice versa). Conversely, a resume is designed to be concise and to the point, typically spanning 1 or 2 pages. Its brevity ensures a swift review by hiring managers, focusing on key qualifications and achievements relevant to the targeted position. In essence, the length of these documents reflects their purposes, with a CV allowing for a comprehensive exploration and a resume emphasising immediate relevance.

Information

A CV delves deeply into an individual’s academic and professional achievements. It encompasses not only employment history and educational qualifications but also projects, publications, conference presentations, volunteering experience, certifications and academic honours. This comprehensive approach provides a holistic view of the individual’s contributions to their field. On the other hand, a resume prioritises relevance and succinctness. It typically focuses on work experience, skills, and achievements directly related to the targeted job. While a resume may touch upon education and certifications, its emphasis remains on showcasing qualifications tailored to the specific position.

Use Cases of CVs and Resumes

Whether you want to use a CV or resume in Australia when applying for jobs depends on what the job requirements state. In Australia, unless a clear page limit has been stated in the job description, a CV or a resume would typically capture the same essence in terms of professional experience. Longer CVs are ideally prevalent in academic and research roles, senior executive positions, and industries that prioritise a thorough understanding of a candidate’s entire career trajectory. Resumes spanning 1 or 2 pages on the other hand are commonly used for roles in corporate and business environments. They are also preferred for technical and specialised positions where a concise and targeted overview of a candidate’s qualifications is highly valued.

Be it a resume or a CV, drafting career documents the right way often requires expert intervention. This is where CV Writers’ significance comes in. If you’re a fresh graduate looking for opportunities to break into the industry, or a professional seeking to move on to a better career, we have services tailored to your needs.

Want to know more? Check out our CV services or talk to a career specialist for FREE!

Ben Wood
Ben Wood

Professional and executive Career Coach with seven years of experience providing CV writing and career services to 400+ professionals and executives, with specialist knowledge in public sector appointments, executive profile development, and tech/telco careers. Background of 20+ years in IT includes 10+ years at Telstra where he managed engineering and product development teams with up to 100 staff.

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