Last Updated on: January 3rd, 2017
At some point in your life, if you are a looking for a job, you will get asked to submit a CV to an employer.
If you have a CV, that’s great! If you don’t have one, then you need to create one.
If you’re a freelancer, you should have an updated CV on hand at all times. You never know when you will need it!
Some job seekers – freelancers included – don’t know what a CV is. Or they don’t have one.
So today I will tell you everything you need to know about CVs.
I will answer the most commonly asked questions, too.
CV and Résumé FAQs
In this article, you will find answers to:
- What is a CV?
- Why Do You Need One?
- Why Do Employers Ask for One?
- What are the components of a CV?
- How can you create a CV?
- What if you have no work experience?
- Can you show me some samples of CVs?
- Which tools and/or services can you use to create a CV?
By the end of this article, you will be equipped with the knowledge you need to apply for a job using your CV.
And all of your CV or Résumé FAQs will have been answered!
You’ll even get access to a free template!
What is a CV (Curriculum Vitae)?
CV stands for curriculum vitae, which is a Latin phrase for “course of life.”
A curriculum vitae is a summary of your work experience, skills, and education.
In the USA and Canada, it is known as a résumé, which is a French word for “summary.”
CVs are typically longer than résumés, but the two terms are often used interchangeably.
CVs also generally contain a cover letter while résumés do not.
For a more detailed explanation of these terms, read CV vs. Résumé: The Difference and When to Use Which. You can also read Curriculum Vitae (CV) vs. a Résumé to see the specific differences between the two.
Nowadays, both CVs and résumés are often submitted electronically. It’s best to save your digital version of your CV or résumé as a PDF because PDFs are easy to read and to attach in an email.
Why Do You Need One?
As a job seeker, you will need to show your potential employers what your qualifications are.
You will also need to impress them.
If you have a CV that includes all of your pertinent information and has the skills they are looking for, you have a better chance of getting the job.
Why Do Employers Ask for One?
Most employers follow a specific process when they need a new employee.
They will post a job ad, ask for a CV to be submitted, select a few people to interview, interview them, and then choose the best person for the job.
Employers for a CV because they want to know who you are. They want to know if you have the right qualifications for the job.
By collecting CVs from prospective job candidates, they can analyze the information and choose the best person for an interview. If the interview goes well, then you might get the job!
TIP: When you are applying for a job, be sure to read the instructions provided by employers in their job postings. When it comes to CVs, some employers are very specific about what they want you to include. They also might want you to list things in a certain order. Follow their instructions carefully!
What are the components of a CV?
Basically, a CV tells who you are, what you know, what you have done, and what your skills are.
The information on your CV should be carefully selected to show exactly how you meet the job requirements.
You should customize your CV for each job you apply for, too.
The different components you should include on your CV are:
Your contact information
Your key qualifications
Your work history
Any volunteer experience you have (that relates to the job you are applying for)
Any awards you have received
Any professional licenses or certifications you have
Any professional development you have undertaken
Your hobbies or interests (to show your personality)
Endorsements, letters of recommendation or a list of references
*If you’re a freelance writer, you should also include any blog posts, papers, books/e-books, and any other related publications you have (in newspapers, magazines, etc.).
Clearly, your CV or résumé can contain many different things.
Ultimately, it is up to you to decide what to include in it, based on your own personal education and experiences.
Whatever you choose to include, make sure it is relevant to the job you are applying for.
How to Create a CV
How to Write a CV shares some really great tips on CV creation.
Creating your CV or résumé will take some time, but it’s not hard to do.
First, decide which components or sections you are going to include.
Second, put them in the order you want them.
Third, gather the information (and any online web links) that you will use in it, and fill out each section.
TIP: Be sure to ask permission from your references if you are going to provide this component. (Note that you can say “Letters of References available upon request.”)
What If You Have No Experience?
If you’re applying for your first job or applying for a job that you don’t have any prior experience in, don’t panic! You can still make your CV or résumé look good!
Highlight your education and skills. Include power words and adjectives when describing yourself or your skills. (Adjectives are “describing words” or “words used to describe something.”)
For example, you might be “ambitious,” “eager to learn,” “loyal,” “trustworthy,” “devoted,” and “punctual.”
You might have “excellent” interpersonal skills.
You might have “outstanding” writing skills.
You might have “amazing” or “mind-blowing” communications skills.
As long as you can make a good impression, that’s all you really need to worry about!
Experience will come in time, and when you gain experience, you can update your CV with these details.
Can you show me some samples of CVs?
Freelance writers should be able to craft their own CV or résumé.
However, it’s always nice to have a sample to look at.
There are many samples online. Find one sample here.
Find another here.
TIP: Update your online profiles when you are creating your own CV or résumé!
Which Tools and/or Services Can You Use to Create a CV?
There is a company called CV Folks that specializes in creating CVs. They will write you a professional cover letter, and/or create a professional CV for you.
If you have Microsoft Word, you can also use a résumé template provided there. Or you can access them online.
Other templates can be found online, too. A simple Google search will show you many!
Another option is to hire me to help you. I’m a freelancer for hire! See the 4 services I offer.
Whatever you decide to do, I wish you good luck with your CV or résumé creation!
Now that you know the answers to the most commonly asked CV or Résumé FAQs, you are sure to find a good job. 🙂
Happy job hunting!
PS. If you *really* want to succeed in the freelancing field, I highly suggest you take Elna’s course, Write Your Way to Your First $1k.