Jobs & Careers

12 alternative CV examples to help you stand out

We've all spent hours trying to make our CV 'sparkle' so we stand out from the crowd. But have you ever thought about doing something completely off the wall?

While employers might be content with two A4 pages of your qualifications, experience and achievements, there's more to CVs than Comic Sans and reverse chronological order (NB: please, never use Comic Sans in your CV).

With a little flair and pizazz anyone can create something that'll really stand out. Here's our pick of some of the most creative CVs we've seen. If these don't inspire you, nothing will!

Looking for extra help with your CV? You can find out everything you need to impress, plus snag yourself a template, in our guide to great CVs.

12 ways to make a unique CV

  1. Google CV

    creative Google CV

    Credit: Eric Gandhi

    Perhaps our favourite thing about this CV is that the idea is actually so simple and easy to create.

    When Eric Gandhi was going for a job at Google, he formatted his CV to look like he's appeared in a Google search for a 'Creative, hard-working, talented designer'.

    Did it work? Yes, Eric was offered an interview just 30 minutes after submitting his application! But he actually ended up turning down his job offer at Google, and has since built an amazing career working for the likes of Walt Disney Studios, Buzzfeed, eBay and the Weather Channel.

    I was looking for a way to stand out from all the other designers out there. Truthfully, I got fed up with following the stuffy, formal conventions that you are expected to follow in your job hunt or work life.

  2.  Massive billboard

    jobless paddy billboard CV

    Credit: Féilim Mac An Iomaire

    Alright, alright, so a billboard isn't quite a CV but this is pretty damn cool and super inventive. And if you're wondering how potential employers could get in touch - Féilim's email address was on the bottom of the billboard.

    The bold stunt proved a big success, resulting in 20 interviews and several job offers. Féilim eventually took a job at Paddy Power - and was saved from emigration as a result!

  3.  Equally massive billboard campaign

    Adam Pacciti Billboard CV

    Credit: Adam Pacitti

    While we're on the subject of billboards, media production grad Adam Pacitti took the world by storm when his campaign seeking employment went viral.

    He spent his last five hundred pounds on a billboard, set up a video CV and a website, and suddenly appeared all over international newspapers and TV. Oh, and he received over 100 job offers.

    He eventually ended up working at media company KEO and spent his first paycheck on another billboard to say thank you.

    Of course I was hoping it would go viral, but I ended up receiving coverage from newspapers across the country and websites around the world.

    If you fancy setting up your own website, here's how you do it in 20 minutes!

  4.  Musical guitar CV

    alternative guitar CV

    Credit: Scott McFadden

    Musician and graphic designer Scott McFadden decided to turn his beloved guitar into a stylish resume and posted the photos online, generating quite a lot of attention.

    It's not the most practical CV to take along to a job interview, but it certainly shows some serious style and flair.

  5. CD CV

    If you're gonna do something, you might as well put your back into it, right?

    In the case of Digital Design student, Sean Ball, this meant turning his resume into a coordinated design across business cards, CD-ROMs (who even uses these anymore?) and an accompanying booklets.

    Urgh, some people just have all the skills!

  6. Chocolate bar CV

    unique chocolate bar CV

    Credit: Nicholas Begley

    Who's to say a bit of old fashioned sweet talking doesn't do the trick? Nicholas Begley was offered two jobs in just three months with this nice example of creative self-marketing!

    This chocolate bar had all the right ingredients, including "100% daily value in Leadership, Creativity, and Business Acumen" and "110% Work Ethic."

    Although he always sent the chocolate bar along with a more 'traditional' CV, the sweet treat certainly helped him stand out from the crowd.

  7. QR code CV

    CV with QR code

    Credit: Victor Petit

    What might appear to be just a boring old piece of paper is actually so much more. If you scan the QR code in place of Victor's mouth, a video of his mouth will pop up and complete the picture.

    You can see the CV in action here.

    I tried to create a CV that would enable me to express myself vocally as soon as they read the paper version.

    It's amazing what technology can achieve these days, eh?

  8. eBay CV

    ebay cv josh butler

    Credit: Josh Butler

    You're a popular candidate right? So why not let the world fight over you? Well, that's what Josh Butler did.

    After applying for over 600 jobs when he finished his A levels, Josh took matters into his own hands, and the clever tactic landed him interviews at John Lewis and a couple of call centres.

    Not only did his resume make him stand out from the hoards of other candidates, he also got bid on three times. Innovation works, chaps!

  9. Fabric CV

    It's very rare you see a CV so visually appealing you just want to stick it on your wall and frame it... or maybe even wear it? But we think we may have a winner here.

    Melissa Washin printed her CV onto fabric and added some hand embroidery for extra style factor.

    Thanks to the CV she ended up getting the first job she applied for after college, and has since worked at the likes of Etsy and Modcloth.

  10. Video game CV

    Just let that sink in for a minute... Robby Leonardi genuinely created a CV that's also A GAME. Well, an interactive CV that kinda looks and feels like a game, anyway.

    You can scroll along the screen to view his skills - it's like Super Mario Bros but for the world of employment and we love it.

    The resume went on to win Robby many awards - and a career at Fox News in New York.

  11. Pixar package CV

    handmade CV for Pixar

    Credit: Brian Moose

    WHAT'S IN THE BOX? Well, it's only an old-school style film canister, with a sketch book full of awesomeness that Brian Moose sent to Pixar in the hopes of getting a job with the company!

    Pixar better have hired this guy.

  12. Interactive video CV

    So a lot of people have tried to hop onto the video CV bandwagon, but Graeme Anthony just blew this outta the water.

    He created his own interactive YouTube video (a CVIV for short), showing off his smart design and production skills. Pretty clever!

    It shows off my personality in a way a paper CV can't. It's got the wow factor.

    Graeme secured his job at Frank PR when they saw the video and were suitably impressed!

Fancy giving it a bash? Here’s some tips on how to set up your YouTube channel. Once you’ve landed your dream job, you can start using it to make some cash on the side!

Have you got a really creative CV that you want to share with the world? Let us know below!

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