Best Resume Format In Canada

Canada newcomers mostly find it difficult to write a perfect resume in Canadian format. This article will cover how to create a resume for Canada in the Canadian resume format.

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You will also learn:

  • Does Canada say CV or resume?
  • What is the proper format for a resume in Canada?
  • How do you write a resume in Canada?
  • And lots more.

So, if you’re looking for a sample resume format in Canada to work with in creating yours, you’ll love this guide.

Let’s get started!

Does Canada Say CV or Resume?

The terms, CV and Resume can sometimes be greatly confused for each other. Recruiters in Canada may sometimes request a CV (Curriculum Vitae) rather than the usual resume.

Must Read: Working while Studying in Canada

Though both business documents look quite identical, they really aren’t!

Although in Canada, especially in places like Quebec, residents tend to use both CVs and resumes interchangeably, in other provinces in the country, both terms are used differently.


A CV is an in-depth and well-detailed case study of one’s experience of work, accomplishments, and qualifications. CVs are used mainly by professionals looking to go up the ladder in the workplace (like someone applying for a senior executive job) or people applying for academic, educational, or research positions in an institution.

While CV can be as long as 5-10 pages, a standard resume format is just about one (1) to two (2) pages.

A Canadian resume on the other hand is a document which an employer or recruiter uses in evaluating a person’s candidacy for a position in a company in Canada. It is a one-page document that shows a person’s special abilities, professional experience, and academic accomplishments.

The basic objective of a resume format in Canada is to urge the reader to consider one’s experiences and unique talents to qualify for the job opportunity being recruited for.

What is the Popular Resume Format in Canada?

The primary features of a resume format in Canada include:

  • The document is often written in one column.
  • It should contain both paragraph writing and bullet points.
  • Each subheading should be made distinguishable through the use of hard lines and bold text.
  • The document should concentrate on the abilities and skills you have that directly transform to the particular job you are applying for.
  • Lastly, the document should be of a single page in length, except you have many special abilities and experiences that would qualify you for the job.

Resumes written in Canadian format do differ from the standard format both in function and structure. The standard format may feature one or two columns with included additional stylistic or graphic elements while the resume format in Canada is written in one column and does not include any graphic element.

One-column resume format in Canada showing its header

Both formats do posses headers at the top of the page that displays the applicant’s name and contact information.

The standard resume format features about five or six sections that include resume objectives, educational experiences, job histories, skills and one or more optional sections following the header section, and even a professional photo. This is also usually accompanied by a one-page cover letter.

Rather, the resume format in Canada includes only four sections outside the header and it does act as a stand-alone document without any need for a cover letter.

Tips for Writing a Resume Format in Canada

Here are some tips used for writing a resume format in Canada:


Other standard resume format in Canada rules include:

#1: Avoid these terms

There are some terms that are not typically used when writing a resume format in Canada. These terms include:

  • GPA
  • Internship
  • Gap-year

#2: Research the typical job language

Take some time to research the typical language people commonly use when applying for jobs in Canada, especially in the industry that you’re currently applying for.

In addition, Canadian English slightly varies from the usual United States English, so, in that case, many words that are spelled with an ‘o’ are spelled with an “ou” in Canada.

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#3: Be brief and concise

Now, you may be so used to detailing your work experience in its entirety when writing a normal resume… STOP IT!!!

A good resume format in Canada needs to be more tailored, not necessarily having to include all job roles you’ve taken in the past.

Most Canadian resumes usually contain just one or two work experiences as this would allow the recruiter to expatiate on your achievements and impact on the company during that time.

You may be used to specifying your soft skills in one section and your hard/technical skills in another, but when you are working with a Canadian resume format, do well to group them together in just one section.

Also, ensure to include skills that are in relation to the position you are currently applying for. When writing a Canadian resume, do well to exclude all personal details about your hobbies and interest unless they are correlated to a skill that is functional in the workplace.

The broad professional summary at the header of your Canadian resume serves the same purpose as the standard resume’s cover letter. In that case, there is no need to send more than one document to a possible employer when applying for a job.

How Do You Write a Resume in Canada?

Given the standard resume format in Canada, you can follow the outlined steps below to write your first standard Canadian resume:

Resume header

In your resume header, include your name, address, phone number, and email address. Ensure to increase the font size of your name and make use of bold characters in this section.

Professional summary

This part should be about two-paragraph long. The section can be thought of as a combination of ideas behind your standard resume objectives and cover letter. It should thus be written in paragraph form and should include full sentences.

Area of expertise or core strengths

You may prefer to input your strength and abilities under this section. This is the section where recruiters spot your abilities and power for completing projects and assignments as regards the current job position you are applying for.

Professional achievements

This is the section for your work experiences and the information to be displayed here should be recent. It should show your work experiences that relate to the job that you’re applying for.

Ensure to include only one or two chronological experiences here. This should be listed from the most recent work experience and that while moving back in time.

Educational experiences

The section for your educational accomplishments should be the last thing on your Canadian resume. It should be described from your most recent accomplishments and down to older educational achievements.

Now I’d Love to Hear from You:

What specific features do you think job recruiters in Canada really look out for in a resume? Let me know by leaving a comment below!

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