Resume vs CV – What’s the Difference?

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Resume vs CV - What's the Difference?

I frequently hear early-career scientists and engineers use the term ‘CV’ (abbreviation for Curriculum Vitae) when they are applying for an industry job. This is incorrect terminology, and will likely make a bad impression on the hiring manager, so I want to say a few words to clear up any confusion.

CVs and resumes are very different and should not be confused. CVs are for jobs in academia. A resume is what you want for an industry job search. If you give a CV to a hiring manager in an industry, they will think you haven’t done your homework, and that you are probably not prepared to enter this new world. The private sector is very different than the academic research environment where you got your advanced degree. Nothing screams, “I have no industry experience,” louder than sending a CV to accompany an industry job application. The difference is not just in the name — the two documents are very different in both content and purpose.

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