JOB HUNTING IS STRESSFUL! True that! If you have been looking for a new job, you can relate yourself to this reality. While there can be number of reasons behind not cracking the job, one thing that often acts as a hurdle and is overlooked is, UNAPPEALING RESUME DESIGN.
The way you present your details is equally important to the information you include. You may not know but hiring managers notice everything and resume design is the first thing they set their eyes on.
Fortunately, you don’t have to take it as a pressure because you can always take out some free time and refine your resume design.
Go through these 7 resume design principles mentioned below and increase your resume’s possibility to stand out from the pack.
A unique font is an effortless way to let the resume speak loud. Surprisingly, there ain’t any right or wrong in terms of resumes; however, you got to follow some basic guidelines:
The font used should be legible on the screen and in print. Font size between 11 and 13 points is ideal.
Headers should be of same size. Likewise, body text should also have same size.
For creative or digital fields, Sans serif fonts are a good option.
Comic Sans and Papyrus should be avoided, as they belong to the design industry and often look childish.
Fonts reflect your personality
As resume is the first thing to be noticed, it conveys your persona through every aspect of it. Font you choose provokes the reader to think about you.
Some guidelines for choosing a font that complements your personality:
Serif: Serif fonts have various styles and are associated with professional settings. Use them if you are technical, logical or analytical.
Sans serif: These are modern and clean with variety of styles. Sans serif makes for a good choice if you are creative and design-oriented.
Script: Though these are not used widely, script fonts have the potential to prove successful. Go for them if you are relaxed, easy going, fun or warm.
Thin: It is best when the focus is not on highlighting something. Consider thin font if you are quiet, reserved or calm.
Blocky: When the focus is on grabbing attention, blocky font is the way to go. It is meant for outgoing, extrovert or expressive people. Count on it to mention your name, important headings and contact details.
Want to use two different fonts? You can, provided they say something you want the reader to know.
Contact section looks prominent at the top of the page. A live link can be infused in the email address if the resume is submitted electronically. Depending on the industry, live links can also be included in social media profiles.
Icons are effective and sophisticated; hence, they can be used to make the contact information striking without killing the essence of the resume.
Use white space
Contact information looks pronounced with use of proper space. Appropriate use of white space helps eyes to go from one detail to another.
Another way to take reader’s eye to the contact information is through the right color. It refers to sectioning off the contact details and opting for a different background color or using a different color for the text.
As per researches, HR representatives spend only about six seconds on the resume. You have to make the best out of those seconds, as they are no less than a treasure.
Columns are probably an excellent way to incorporate a lot of information without spoiling the feel of the design or pushing the resume to more than one page. Besides, they make the resume skimmable, which means higher chances of being read.
To make things visually interesting, divide the resume into two columns of different sizes. Apply your creativity to use both the columns. For instance, use the smaller column to highlight the most impressive achievements. As far as the larger column is concerned, use it to specify more detailed data such as job descriptions.
Format the content
Always use headings and subheadings. For lengthier descriptions, include bullet points. Keep the copy brief and leave white spaces to escape from the cluttered feel.
Not everyone knows, but infographics take the resume to the next level. HOW? They visually explain things that can’t be expressed through words.
LESS IS MORE! Absolutely. Though you want to include maximum information to describe your plus points and strength, you definitely don’t want the resume to look like a wall of text.
DON’T FORGET THE AUDIENCE. If looking for an administrative role at a traditional company, go for a highly graphic resume design. However, if applying at a startup or applying for graphic design position, create your charisma with an infographic resume.
Resume design is highly influenced by the type of position you are applying for.
For a job in publishing, opt for a classic font; for a job as a web designer, add colorful elements or consider a digital resume and highlight your skills in action.
Posting for multiple jobs? Don’t worry. Simply create multiple resumes based on what turns up when you are busy in researching your target companies.
Remember, the aim here is being creative and innovative without violating the boundaries of normalcy that turn off potential employers.
Yes, you can’t use emojis or stickers on your resume but you can still add personal touch through designs.
You need to keep in mind that if the reader prints out an electronically submitted resume, they may not be able to get it in color. Hence, it must look appealing and legible even in black and white.
Keep things clean and minimalistic. The text, design, headings and important details must add a unique element that strengthens your personality.
THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX. For example, you can write ‘my story’ instead of ‘my resume.’ After all, it’s a description of your professional journey.
BEING BOLD ISN’T ANY CRIME. Apart from you, there are several candidates applying for the same job. What you need to do is surpass them with the first impression. Conventional resume standards are a thing of the past now.
Investing hours in designing a flawless resume is a waste of time if you save it in the wrong format. You should always save the resume as a PDF to avoid the risk of messing up the format when it is opened by the hiring manager. A wonky resume will undermine your professionalism.
What else? DON’T IGNORE THE FILENAME. Saving the file with the word ‘resume’ conveys lack of attention. Use your first & last name and the word ‘resume.’
Taking enough time to create a well-designed resume is time taking but is worth the result. A resume that pleases the hiring manager and features your accomplishments & personality will take you closer to your dream job.