In our online world of job applications, is the best CV presentation no longer paper? Is the paper CV now dead, with digital CVs reigning supreme? Today we discuss the merits of using both a digital and paper CV format when applying for jobs, and whether the paper CV is a thing of the past.


Choosing the Best CV Format for Your Job Application

When applying for jobs online, often you’re asked to attach a digital copy of your curriculum vitae along with a cover letter. In some cases, simply your LinkedIn profile is taken instead of a CV. Does this mean that the paper CV is a thing of the past and you shouldn’t use it?

Quite frankly, no. A hard copy of your CV offers you plenty of benefits and can often make your application stand out above the others. The decision as to which format to use will often depend on the job you are applying for and the way in which the recruiter has asked for applications to be sent. However, if the choice is up to you, then here are a few things to consider:
  • A paper CV is a physical thing, something which can be touched and looked through anywhere. You are judged on the presentation of your CV and the paper you use.
  • Digital CVs are often subjected to filtering software, where keywords are looked for. If you don’t have those words, your CV can be discarded before having even been seen by a recruiter.
  • Older managers involved in the hiring process sometimes prefer a hard copy CV than a digital version. They are more comfortable in making decisions on paper, not via a screen.
  • A digital CV needs to be available in a format which is easily opened by the reader. You may consider sending multiple file types with your application.
  • Digital CVs save you money, which is especially important if you are sending out many applications.
  • A digital CV allows you to hyperlink to examples which confirm the claims you make in your resume.
  • Bringing a paper copy of your CV to an interview is good practice, demonstrating professional courtesy and that you are organised and prepared.

Ready to Start Writing Your CV? 


It’s a good idea to have both an editable paper and digital version of your CV. This prepares you for any eventuality in your application process.  And, really, there is no reason why you have to choose one method over another. You can combine both methods.  Submitting your CV online, in addition to getting a paper CV into the hands of a hiring manager is a good strategy. 

There are three main CV types you will need to select from when writing your CV: chronological, functional and combination. Take a read of our article How to Pick the Right CV Format to learn how to write the best CV for your individual circumstances.
For assistance in the editing or writing of your CV, we’re here to help. Contact us directly and together we’ll create a powerful and irresistible CV!