How do I Write a Creative Curriculum Vitae?

Sheri Cyprus
Sheri Cyprus
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It's important to remember that a creative curriculum vitae (CV) must be professional, yet still stand out from the CVs of other candidates. Achieving this delicate balance isn't easy, but tends to be the most successful approach for job applications in creative design fields. Viewing potential employers' websites as well as closely reading their job ads before you write a creative CV may be helpful by giving you some insight into the company's highest work values. Structuring your creative curriculum vitae with these company values in mind can be a good idea. After all, the best way to present yourself as a job seeker is being the right fit for the specific firm.

To show potential employers right away that you're the best person for the job, make sure the CV you write begins with a clear objective immediately after the beginning portion that includes your name and contact information. By matching your objective with the exact title of the job a company uses, you are already showing that you're on its wavelength. For instance, if the advertised job reads "Marketing Designer wanted" but you list your work objective as just "Designer," this isn't matching what the company wants. Go a step further and use another quote from the ad such as by noting that the ad says something unusual or specific like "part-time, on-call position." In that case, you could write on that particular creative curriculum vitae "Objective: Part-time, On-call Marketing Designer" to show that you understand the company's needs and are looking for exactly what it wants.

The first skills you should showcase on your creative CV should be your strongest ones that relate to the qualifications the potential employer wants. Many employers, or the human resources department of a company, quickly scan each CV to decide whether the candidate is suitable for the short list for the position. Pick either your job experience or education background — whichever shows you as the best match for what the company is seeking and use that one first, followed by the other. Do your homework and look for clues about what type of employees the company seems to want by reading the "About Us" or "Our Team" section of the website.

If you're asked to send an online creative curriculum vitae, a great idea to help you stand out is to provide a link to your portfolio. Use your best samples and try to make them as relevant as possible to the work a company expects from a new creative hire. Place the link in the section on your CV in which you are discussing these sample pieces. If your experience is limited, or if all you have to show is your top-notch classroom work for an entry-level creative position, having an excellent portfolio that fits in with the type of designer the company is seeking can really help you get noticed. Don't let having your portfolio link stop you from making sure you followed all of each potential employer's guidelines for applying as well as making sure your CV is in a professional format without typos or other mistakes.

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