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How to List Certifications on a CV (with Samples)

Guide for how to list certifications on CVs + examples and tips. Lists of easy certifications and job-critical certifications + how to put them on CVs.

Tom Gerencer
Career Expert
How to List Certifications on a CV (with Samples)

If employers can’t find job-critical certifications on your CV, you’re sunk.

Your professional certifications list must stand out like a rescue flare.

Even easy certifications like Udemy certificates or bartending certificates can make a CV shine.

How to add certifications on your CV? 

Certifications should be added in different sections of the CV depending on whether they are critical or not. Critical certifications should be added front and centre: by your name, in your CV summary, or in your work experience section. Extra certifications can go before your education and after your experience.

But—

There are more rules for how to put certifications on CVs.

In this guide:

  • How to list certifications on CVs so they catch employers’ eyes.
  • How to put certifications on CVs for both job-critical and “extra” certs.
  • A list of easy certifications you can get to put a CV on overdrive.
  • An IT certifications list, Google certification courses list, and Microsoft certifications list. Plus job-specific certifications and how to get them.

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TL;DR—Where to put certifications on CVs? If they’re job-critical, in four places. After your name, in your summary, in a certifications section near the top, and in your experience section.

If they’re not, in a CV certifications section below your education.

1. How to List Certifications on CVs When They’re Job-Critical [+ Clear Examples]

Nightmare.

The hiring manager just tossed your CV atop a blazing bonfire.

She thought, this applicant’s not qualified.

But you are! You just don’t know how to list certifications on CVs.

Put job-critical certifications for jobs in four places:

1. By your name

2. In your CV summary

3. In a special certifications section near the top

4. In your work experience section

These CV certification examples show how:

Steve Madland, (1) PMP
Phone: 206-817-7846
E-mail: steveqmadland@gmail.com

Summary

(2) Certified PMP with 5+ years of experience and solid planning skills, seeking to improve delivery times and quality for DHGX International Foods. At Blarz-Gigney, cut project costs 18% in 7 months and slashed wasted labour cost 25%. Trained 120 employees in Lean Principles.

(3) Certifications

  • PMP—Project Management Institute
  • Six Sigma Black Belt—ASQ

Work Experience

Aardvark Edibles, Inc.
(4) PMP
2014–2018

  • Worked with cross-functional teams to cut delivery times by 17%.
  • Led team of 43...
  • ...

That how to add certification in CV sample will get attention like a klieg light.

What are job-critical CV certifications?

They’re certs you absolutely need to get the job.

For examples, see this professional certifications list:

How to list certification in progress on CV:

Show certifications in progress on a CV by adding “Anticipated completion” and the date.

Need to know how to list certifications on CVs not central to the job? Non-critical, good certifications to have are up next.

Expert Hint: Job-critical certs and licences are necessary. You can’t get the job without them. Easy certifications help more when you’re an entry-level candidate.

2. How to Put Certifications on CVs When They’re “Extra”

Easy certifications can put turbo thrusters on an entry-level CV.

But there are rules.

Listing certifications on CVs when they’re “extra”:

  • Put “extra” certs high on a CV if they’re your most impressive achievement.
  • List them lower down if they’re an added bonus.

These IT certifications examples show how:

[Contact Info]

[CV Summary]

[Experience]

[Education]

Certifications

  • CompTIA A+
  • Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist
  • VMware Certified Design Expert

[Additional Activities]

That how to list certifications on CVs sample is unicorn-level. It’s got the right list of certifications in the right place to make hiring managers fumble for the phone.

When should you leave certifications off a CV?

When they’re unimpressive, out of date, or not relevant to the job. Unless you’re angling for a bottle-washing job, leave that bottle brush certification off your CV.

And—

Put newer and more impressive certs higher in the list.

Expert Hint: Online courses don’t always offer certification. But—you can still list non-cert classes on a CV to show proficiency.

The ResumeLab builder is more than looks. Get specific content to boost your chances of getting the job. Add job descriptions, bullet points, and skills. Easy. Improve your CV in our CV builder now.

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3. Easy Certifications List

Now you know how to list certifications on CVs.

But—

Need a list of good certifications to have?

Who could blame you?

Showing a cert on a CV is the difference between saying you’ve got a skill and proving it.

CV certifications can also land a bigger paycheck.

This list of certifications shows the 12 best certs for popular careers.

Also check out Udemy Certificates and LinkedIn Learning Certificates.

Udemy offers PMP, IT, and other certifications online.

Easy Certifications List:

Expert Hint: Should you show CPR certifications on CVs? If it’s a medical job or dealing with the public, yes. Otherwise, save the space for impressive achievements.

4. Bonus: Google Certifications and Best IT Certifications Online

Do IT and Google certifications matter?

In the IT, tech, and marketing world, yes.

Most IT professionals tout the CompTIA A+ as the best cert for the industry.

Will it make up for thin experience?

Nope.

But it’ll put you fifty steps ahead of other entry-level candidates.

Find yours in this IT certifications list and Google Certifications list:

IT Certifications Online

Google Certifications Courses List

Check out more computer skills here.

Microsoft Office Specialist Certification: Is it worth it?

If you’re an entry-level candidate, definitely.

Otherwise, save you money and list on-the-job MS Office accomplishments.

Expert Tips: Certification online can be just as impressive as in-person licencing. Servsafe certifications, PMP certifications, and Fema Certifications are all available online.

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Want to try a different look? There’s 18 more. A single click will give your document a total makeover. Pick a cover letter template here.

Key Points

Here’s a recap of how to list certifications on CVs:

  • Put job-critical CV certifications in four places: 1. By your name. 2. In your summary. 3. In your work history. 4. In a special certifications section.
  • Show easy-to-get certifications in a certifications section lower down.
  • For a list of easy certifications to get, like Udemy certificates or Lynda certificates, scroll up.
  • For an IT certifications list, a Google certifications list, or a Microsoft certifications list, see the sections above.

Need more career advice? Check out these blog posts: 

How to list education on CV?

How to list relevant coursework on CV?

What should you include in a CV?

Which skills should i put on my CV?

How to write a targeted CV?

Got a question about how to put certifications on CVs? Wondering what certifications should I get? Need to know how to include certifications in CVs for a specific career? Leave a comment. We’d be happy to reply!

About ResumeLab’s Editorial Approach

At ResumeLab, excellence lies at the heart of our values, underpinning our promise to provide outstanding career resources. Our team of career experts meticulously assesses each article in line with our editorial guidelines, guaranteeing our content's high quality and dependability. We consistently engage in original research, illuminating the nuances of the job market and earning acclaim from various influential news outlets. Our commitment to delivering professional career advice draws millions of readers to our blog annually.

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Tom Gerencer
Having published over 200 career-advice articles, Tom Gerencer is a career expert who covers the whole array of job-seeking topics for people at all career stages, from interns to C-suite members. His insights, commentary, and articles reach over a million readers every month. With inside knowledge of key industry players and in-depth research, Tom helps job seekers with advice across all professions and career stages.

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