UK CV Format: What to Include & Tips

Before learning more about the UK CV format, you should first know what a CV essentially means. It stands for Curriculum Vitae and is used for applying for employment or job positions. It will help you showcase and summarize your academic and professional journey to date and list your accomplishments, skills, and other aspects. Employers often desire a cover letter with your CV. Canada and the USA have a resume in place of a CV, while CVs are more used in the UK. 

How Long Should a CV Be? 

If you look at a few examples of standard UK resume formats, you will know that the average CV should have a maximum of two A4 sides. However, there is no hard and fast rule about this. Some may require only a single page, while some may require a multi-page UK CV format PDF for talking about their experience, qualifications, accomplishments, and so on. While keeping things formal, professional, and concise is always recommended, you should mention all relevant information without skipping anything. Avoid repeating the content of your cover letter. 

What to Include in a CV?

You should include the following information in your CV: 

  • Include your contact details like your name, address, mobile phone number, and date of birth if relevant. Do not include your photograph unless necessary. 
  • Keep 100 words highlighting your skills and attributes, what makes you suited for the job and things that differentiate you. This profile or personal statement is a must. 
  • List out your educational details and other qualifications. Go back from the latest one and then list your work experience in the same reverse date format, including the position, company name, length of work, major duties, and so on. 
  • You will then talk about your accomplishments, and skill sets, including languages, other knowledge, technical skills, etc. 
  • Keep a smaller portion for your interests and passions, which may also be relevant to the job. 
  • Conclude with references if required by the employer. If not required at this stage, mention that they are available upon request. 

CV Format

Here are some pointers to remember concerning the UK CV format: 

  • Do not title your document as a CV or Curriculum Vitae. Your name may be the title. 
  • Break up your document with section headings, make them bigger (fonts 14-16), and bold. 
  • Go for clear fonts like Times New Roman, Calibri, or Arial. Keep the size between 10-12. 
  • Maintain consistency of fonts and font sizes throughout your CV. 
  • Everything should be listed in the reverse chronological pattern, i.e., with the most recent one listed first. 
  • Use bullet points and proper spacing. 
  • Name your document while saving. 
  • If the job advertisement asks for a particular format, go for the same. Otherwise, save it in PDF format. 
  • For posting the CV, print with A4 white paper. Print only on one side. Do not fold your CV. 

Tips for a Good CV

Here are some tips for writing good CVs: 

  • Try to use active verbs as much as possible while proofreading for spelling or grammatical errors. 
  • Do not overuse phrases like team player, multi-tasker, sincere, or hardworking. Go for examples that can showcase these skills instead. 
  • Customize your CV for the job position and company in question. 
  • Ensure that you have a professional email address. 
  • Do not exaggerate anything since you will be asked about it later or may have to show proof of your competence accordingly. 
  • Always have a cover letter unless the company states something else. 

FAQs: 

What CV format is widely used and accepted in the UK, and why is it so?

The widely accepted format is the reverse chronological CV since it helps list the most recent accomplishments first, followed by the others in a simple and easy-to-understand manner.

What’s the difference between a US resume/CV and a British one?

The UK calls the job application document a CV, while the USA calls it a resume. The latter is more concise and usually based on a specific format, often a single page long for more convenience.
Resumes are customizable for every position and do not have to follow any specific format.

Does the UK follow the standard Europass CV format?

The UK usually follows the standard format in reverse chronological order for professional experience/academic listings. You can look at what is included in Europass CVs but organize them in the way you deem fit for the job position. You can keep your CV to a couple of pages. The Europass CV format is accepted across Europe, but you should go with a concise and well-formatted version for the UK instead.

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