What is a CV? Think of it this way, a CV or a curriculum vitae is an overview of an individual’s full working career. This document features personal and professional experiences as well as attainments that will propel individuals to their desired positions in a specific industry. But what are the essential details needed in a curriculum vitae?

Don’t fret. To help you get by, we’ve listed down the nine most important details not to miss on crafting a CV. Gain visual insight through our heap of curriculum vitae design ideas and examples to get your creative juices flowing. The design examples showcase individuality and the uniqueness one has to offer. You may also go through our collection of letterhead examples to inspire you.


CV vs. Resume: What is the Difference?

CV or curriculum vitae. A CV, when translated in Latin, means “course of life”, is a detailed and specified document that may be over one or two more pages. A CV features one’s education, educational attainments, academic, and professional experiences and achievements including awards, honors, and so on.

Resume. A resume is a concise and highly customizable document that is no longer than one page. Its core is to make an individual stand out from a multitude of hopeful candidates.

A resume is crafted to adaptability, which means it needs to be tailored to the specific position an individual is applying for. Unlike the curriculum vitae, a resume doesn’t have to be placed in chronological order and mention a full working career.

For a compact answer, the main differences are length, layout, and purpose. 

As mentioned previously, a resume is a brief document that can be customized for different purposes. It does not follow a specified format rule. On the flipside, a CV is highly detailed, full record on the career of an individual and is static on purpose.

Some companies would ask for one of the two documents, so keep in mind to have both in hand during a job application and job offer, just in case.


The Essentials of a CV

What are the things to include in a CV or resume?

Think of it as meeting a new person and getting in a conversation with them. To greet them cordially is a default embedded on us to receive a measured response. There are more topics and personal stories in mind to converse about and eventually, you’ll get there.

In the case of developing a CV, your course of life must come through, be it professional and academic experience, personality and character, and most importantly, determination for the job you are pursuing.

To get you started, we’ll get you through these essentials you must include in crafting your CV:

  • Personal details. Begin by indicating your full name. Place it on top in whichever alignment you choose. Also, place your date of birth as well as your professional descriptor. This will give the employers an idea of the possible job position you are applying for.
  • Brief introduction. Give a brief description about yourself. You don’t have to dive in deeper; just a smidgen of personal details that will be appropriate. You can also mention the job you are interested in and so on.
  • Specialization. Let the employer know what your skills sets are—designing or advertising-related, marketing, coding, creative writing, and so on. Do mention your all your fortes and don’t leave a single one out.
  • Education. Do mention where you went to high school and college. Even better, do include your master’s education in this category, if you have one. With college and master’s education, you would want to explain briefly on what college and master’s program you took as well as any honors.
    • For recent graduates, put your hesitations behind you and do mention most of your academic and professional experiences. It may be internships, nationwide or international competitions pertaining to your course, group projects, passion projects, and so on.
  • Software skills. Are you proficient with the use of Photoshop or Illustrator or any Adobe software? Do you lean towards having mastered architecture and engineering software? Even having a familiarity with Microsoft tools? Whatever they may be, include it with utmost pride.
  • Experiences. If a CV were a meal, this is the heaviest entree available on the menu. Whether you have academic or professional experiences, they are going to serve well for you and your potential employer. Do place your experiences in chronological order. For example, you got a writing job in May of 2016 and recently you had another one in January 2017; place the latter first and continue with the aforementioned.
  • Best qualities. Are you passionate or keen to details, or maybe even both? Do you always go to work on time and are naturally curious? This category increases your chances since it gives the employer an added insight to your personality and efficiency as an individuals so it is important to have these details included in your CV.
  • Contact information. To close your CV, end with your contact details such as your physical address, work or personal contact number and email address. Keep in mind to place current and updated contact information to ensure direct communication.
  • Spoken languages. For an added personal detail, you may also add in your spoken languages to your CV. It displays versatility and adaptability of an individual on different situations.

It is not that necessary to add in personal interests to your CV design since such document focuses on an individual’s full working career. Personal interests will be revealed eventually once an individual begins in the workforce. To sum it all up and give you a mental picture of how you may begin crafting your CV, here is a CV example for you.


The Anatomy of a Curriculum Vitae

Sybil Bobadilla Personal Branding
sybil e1500249236278

Syril on Behance

This CV design presents the owner as an illustrator which serves the design right. This CV design suggests a child-like vibe and personality. It uses bright pops of pink and orange with a touch of a shaded blue. The layout is simple and clear and does its own take on showcasing its software skills through legends and specified format which gives a concise understanding of such skill sets.

Alessia Tatulli Personal Branding
Alessia Tatulli Personal Branding

Alessia Tatulli Personal Branding

Alessia on Behance

Alessia’s concept of her self-promotion branding expresses individuality and personal aesthetic which is apparent across all her branding collaterals,especially her CV. The latter’s design translates simplicity, order and functionality in terms of design and layout.

Self-Portfolio: Ordinary Man. Life.
Self-Portfolio: Ordinary Man. Life.

Ordinary Man. Life on Behance

Above is an unconventional type of design with its irregular layout and composition of design elements. It uses an eye-popping use of the color yellow and is toned down with the colors white and black which create its modern exterior. The essential details such as experiences, software skills, and reference sites are included yet kept at a minimalist appeal.

Nadine Layon CV
Nadine Layon CV

Nadine on Behance

This CV design incorporates dominant organic lines and handwritten typography which suggest the individual is an illustrator. The design also translates an affable and communicative character. The layout is fluid in nature which places the technical elements as if it has movement.

Vincenzo Castro CV
Vincenzo Castro CV

Vincenzo on Behance

This CV design infuses such simplicity and modernity and reflects personal design preference. It uses outlined graphics which connects to small blocks of text which keeps the attention of the reader. The CV design has a black background behind it and is illuminated with touches of yellow.

CV & Resume Templates

For a quick placement of personal information, you can also use templates to help you get by. These pre-made CV and resume templates display an appropriate layout to match your brand’s design or personal design preference.

You may also use these templates as references for your own CV design.

Free Resume/CV
Free Resume/CV


This design offers a clean cv and resume design and it is compatible with DOCX, INDD, PSD, AI and EPS file formats. This CV and resume design come along with a pre-made cover page design as well as extra four color variations.

Free Resume Template Pack
Free Resume Template Pack

Free Resume Template Pack


This set of templates comes in varying design styles as well as layouts, and not to mention a colorful range of templates. You have the option of editing your chosen template online which then can be easily exported as PDF files.

Free Minimal Resume Template
Free Minimal Resume Template


For an in-depth application of personal details, this CV and resume design might be the one for you. It uses a simple and fine typeface and it comes along with two color variations such as white and black for the print design. The layout is dominantly text than images, so if you are opting for a text heavy CV and resume design, this template is up for grabs.

Do’s and Dont’s in Crafting your CV

Keep in mind that the receiver of your CV, which are head hunters and potential employers, are time-poor professionals. With a multitude of hopeful candidates, make it easy for the potential employers to go over your CV. To make sure you get a measured response, follow and avoid some technical mishaps in your CV.

To help you get by, we have listed the following do’s and don’ts in developing your CV:


  • Make your CV clear and direct in terms of content and presentable in the exterior. No one wants to read cramped blocks of texts. To contrast this, weigh out unnecessary details as well as add in more some graphics such as icons, line art, and so on.
  • Describe your role. You may enumerate your achievements and make them quantifiable whenever you can.
  • Keep your CV at a reasonable length. In some cases, a single page for a CV is not sufficient; two or three pages is appropriate yet it is strongly encouraged to use just two.
  • View your experience in a positive light. Do look at your experiences in an objective way. This includes those bad experiences too. Identify the skills that you had developed in the duration of your previous work or education. However, remember to keep it brief. Enumerating your experience will serve as a mental picture to be presented to your potential employer.
  • Explain your breakthroughs in your career or educational activities.
  • Use positive language. Exclude negatives and double negative statements. Do use words such as ‘motivated’, ‘achieved’ and so on to describe yourself and your full working record.
  • Place your name and email address on every page just in case your pages need to be or get separated.
  • Proofread on the technical elements such as grammar, format, spelling, lapses, and so on. Even with the slightest error/s could result to hesitation from the employer.


Lie or embellish the truth. Once potential employers find out that you’ve lied to them, it will likely blow your chance for the position and success.

Handwrite your CV. The exterior will look unprofessional and unprepared. Do craft your CV beforehand and apply your brand design or design preferences. Just remember to keep it presentable in a professional setting.

Throw it all in, especially unnecessary courses, references, and testimonials. Pertaining to educational information, do include higher education degrees and programs attended.

Include personal details that might be viewed negatively such as reasons for leaving a job, failed business or personal ventures, and so on. By doing the flipside, might give the employer a reason to drop you at this crucial stage.

Include salary information and job expectations. Don’t bother mentioning any financial matters at this point for there is a job offer once an employer decides to employ you. A job offer is a time to negotiate such matters.

Use jargon and acronyms unless they are essential.

A curriculum vitae should incorporate a legible, readable, and appropriate type for a CV design. May we suggest one? The font that you may be searching for is the Edmondsans font. It showcases a medium thick weight which serves ease while reading. We hope that this was of great help in developing your CV.

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