How long should a cover letter be is one of life’s mysteries. Until you read this guide. Discover the best cover letter length, no matter what job you’re applying for.
You’re about to discover a carefully curated collection of modern CV templates that are professional, eye-catching and best of all available to download for free. We’ve done the hard work for you and selected 20 of the best free CV templates online. Here they are.
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Free CV Templates for Word
In the search for free CV templates Microsoft Word is still king. Almost 600,000 companies in the US alone use Office 365. That market dominance and its easy to access collection of templates make it a perennial favourite of job seekers around the world.
We’ve chosen a few of the best, but if none of these catch your eye then you can explore the full range of their repository here. Just remember that they’ll mostly be listed as resume templates rather than curriculum vitae templates.
Pro Tip: Many of the templates in the MS Office collection feature a section for your photo. Delete this. A UK CV template should never feature a photograph or personal info like your date of birth or marital status.
1. Red Monogram
Simple but stylish layout, an eye-catching red colour scheme and a distinctive monogram featuring your initials. This free downloadable CV for Word looks fresh, but keeps it professional. Just be sure to change the section headings to use the correct UK CV format.
A good template can only get you so far. Learn how to write your CV here: How to Write a CV: Professional Examples for the UK
2. Creative by MOO
Here’s a free creative CV template that was made in partnership with digital print and design company MOO. The geometric header and footer add an attractive touch of flair, as do the CV icons and aqua-blue colour accents. But it’s a subtle effect and the content remains easily read, so you shouldn’t have any worries about it being scanned by ATS software. A great choice to get your job application MOOving.
3. Green Cube
In colour psychology, green represents balance and harmony. This modern CV template uses a range of green shades and a great CV layout to include all of the information a recruiter needs. The two-column format also gives you plenty of room to write an impactful CV personal statement. The original template features a photograph, but all you need to do is click on it and delete it to make sure you follow UK CV best practice.
4. Mellow Yellow
From balanced green to sunny yellow. This free CV template for Word is bound to stand out from the pile. Plus everything is neatly boxed up for a clean and easy to read presentation. It has a fresh and youthful feel that’d be perfect for a student CV.
Many students opt for a skills-based CV, but is it right for you? Read more: Skills Based CV Format [Complete Guide]
5. Timeless Classic
Like a little black dress or a well-cut suit, some things are timeless classics. This free basic CV template offers a traditional layout with a subtle grey accent. It’s a very clean, conservative look that would be a great choice for a job application for traditional corporate roles. If you like this one, make sure you check out our selection of basic CV templates to download.
Those were just five of the free CV templates offered by Microsoft Office. Before you choose one of these though, let’s consider the advantages and disadvantages.
Free Word CV Template Pros
- Good range of choices, six pages of free CV and cover letter templates.
- Widely used file format.
Free Word CV Template Cons
- Keeping the layout intact can be really difficult. Making longer sections or trying to make any significant changes will often throw everything out of sync and create a complete mess.
Bear these in mind when writing your CV in Word. Next, a selection from Microsoft’s biggest rival in the office suite game.
Free CV Templates for Google Docs
G Suite is snapping at the heels of Microsoft Office as the office suite of choice for corporate and personal users. More than 5 million businesses make use of Google’s cloud-based solution so free Google Docs CV templates are growing ever more popular. If you already have a Google account, then you’re ready to go, if not then it’s easy to set one up.
Ready? Then take a look at our selection.
Then go to the Google Docs home page and click on “template gallery” in the upper right-hand corner. Then scroll down until you find “resumes.” Sorry, Google prefers the American term, too.
This free CV template comes to you courtesy of Google Docs own template gallery. The design is simple and readable, but the spearmint green highlights add a real freshness, just like the mint in a well-made mojito. To access the template simply go to Google’s template gallery, and search for “spearmint”, if you don’t see it right away. There’s a bonus too. Like all of Google’s own CV templates it comes with a matching template you can use to write a cover letter.
Here’s another free CV template from Google’s own gallery. Named Serif after the choice of CV font it’s another simple and clutter-free design. It’s also easily customisable, so you can change the section order. It’d be a great choice for a graduate CV where your education section should go first.
Our third free CV template from the Google gallery is the enigmatically named Swiss. I can’t say what the connection is with the land of Roger Federer and Lindt chocolate, but if it’s even half as good as those two things you’re onto a winner! In all seriousness, this is a solid, well laid out CV template. It makes great use of white space and section separation for ease of reading and would be a good choice for pretty much any job or career.
Want to know how long a CV should be? Get the answer here: How Long Should a CV be? Best Page Length
4. Modern Writer
There are only a few free CV templates in the Google Docs gallery, but they’re all notable for their simplicity and eyeball-friendly layout. Modern Writer is no exception, a simple structure with playful pops of pink makes it a great choice for a free creative CV template. However, the body text font is a little too small for easy reading. Bump it up to 11-12 point so you’re not squinting like grandad when he’s forgotten his glasses.
The last of our free CV templates from the Google Docs gallery is Coral. I can’t see the connection with a tropical reef, and I certainly can’t find Nemo, but I do see an attractively simple CV that’s bound to impress. My favourite feature in this model CV template the use of font pairing, with a tasteful use of cursive script in the experience and education sections.
I’m sure you’ll agree they’re all fine choices to download for a free CV template. But they come with advantages and disadvantages too, so let’s take a look.
Free Google Docs CV Template Pros
- Simple and easy to edit.
- Don’t need access to Microsoft Office, just a free Google account.
Free Google Docs CV Template Cons
- There isn’t a great range available. These are the only five CV templates in Google’s own gallery and good examples from third parties are hard to come by.
Thankfully there are other choices in your hunt for the best free CV template, so let’s check them out.
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More Free CV Templates
Microsoft Office and Google Docs offer some excellent CV templates in their online repositories. But there is a huge array of CVs available from other sources just waiting to be discovered. Canva is an amazing source of free creative CV templates. You just need to create an account.
1. Navy Blue Orange
Navy Blue Orange is the first of our roundup of Canva free CV templates. The colours are bright and eye-catching, but the judicious use of fonts and geometric shapes help to keep it looking professional. It brings to mind a corporate logo and achieves an admirable balance of content and white space.
2. Eye-Popping Colour
This example is worthy of inclusion purely because of its sheer eye-popping vibrance. Fiery red and lemon yellow combine in a two-column format to create a free CV template that almost leaps off the screen. Use this and you will get noticed. Probably best reserved for professions where visual flair is key, such as a graphic designer, game developer or videographer.
3. Pink and Dark Blue Icons
Another free CV template from Canva, but this time with a much gentler use of colour. It makes good use of bold icons on a dusty pink background and has an attractive infographic skills section. A good choice for visually creative fields where you don’t want to blast the hiring manager’s retinas with the radiance of a thousand suns.
4. Grey Simple Minimalist
Don’t like colour? No problem. How about this stylishly monochrome CV template? There aren’t quite 50 shades of grey, but it’ll certainly spice up your job search with its professional layout. The monogrammed initials make for a high-end touch and give it a bespoke finish.
5. Black and Pink
Our last Canva CV template shows you don’t always need bright colours to make an impact. This free CV template stands out with its stark black ground, leaving the text to shine like stars in the night sky. Though it wouldn’t be the best choice for more conservative job sectors, and it would be difficult to render well on paper. That said, there’s something about CVs with a dark background that’s particularly eye-catching.
As you can see, Canva has some impressive free creative CV templates. Once again, they’ve got their strengths and weaknesses.
Canva CV Template Pros
- Canva’s in-app editing is fast, simple and intuitive.
- You can download your CV in PDF format to preserve the layout.
Canva CV Template Cons
- Many of the templates aren’t scannable by ATS systems and if your CV isn’t scannable it’ll be rejected immediately.
Pro Tip: If important information is inserted into your CV as a graphic, then it won’t be ATS scannable. If you’ve any doubts, save your CV as a plain-text file and check the results. If there’s missing info, incorrectly rendered characters or your section order is scrambled then it’s failed the ATS readability test.
Our last set of free CV templates comes from a few sources. Let’s take a look.
6. Paint it Black
This template combines style and simplicity in a package that proves black and white doesn’t need to be boring. The black border and hexagonal CV icons are what makes this one unique. It would also look great printed on high-quality CV paper. It’s available in PSD, Word and AI format and was created by Good-Resume.
7. Fruity Pink
This tasty example comes courtesy of Freesume and is available in Word DOC format. There’s something about that tone of pink that brings to mind a tasty tropical fruit. It’s eye-catching without being obnoxiously bright and the header is attractively laid out with a powerful focus on the applicant’s name.
8. Cold as Ice
Pastel colours can work too. This modern CV template also comes courtesy of Freesume and is available for free download for Word format. The light blue tones are subtle and calming and you’ll notice some unique formatting in the work experience and education sections.
19. Eggy Goodness
Who doesn’t like a good fry up? This free CV template just needs a rasher of bacon to complete that breakfast feeling. It’s a fun example of what you can achieve with a little imagination. Best left for jobs in creative industries, though. It’s available in AI format and comes from Smash Resume.
20. Marvellous Mind Map
Our last free CV template is a truly quirky and creative example. It resembles one of those free-flowing mind maps that get frantically jotted onto a whiteboard during business brainstorming sessions. Definitely one for creative careers only. The unconventional layout won’t convince conventionally-minded recruiters. It’s downloadable in Word format from Smash Resume.
If you’re looking for more simple CV templates, then see some examples here: 18+ Basic CV Templates to Download
And that’s our complete round-up of free CV templates. Did you have any favourites? Have you got any useful resources to share? Hit me up in the comments section and let’s get the discussion started.