Jacqueline Astrid January 30, 2021 Resume
Perhaps the role you’re applying for is more administrative, even if it’s within a creative company, or the company isn’t so much a youthful start-up but more an established, formal enterprise. Applying for a role at an architecture firm or marketing company? Perhaps a more stripped-back resume design would be more fitting. This means no photos (or at the very least, no colorful cropped images from Facebook…but I’m trusting you wouldn’t subject any future employer to those anyway), no graphics, and no colors that’ll give a CEO a headache. Choose a classic sans serif typeface and keep the structure of your minimal resume conventional. Flush type to align left, to keep your text traditional in style. Allow for white space to make the whole design appear serene and professional. Use simple, thin lines (look to the Stroke Tools in Adobe software) to divide sections of content into manageable chunks. Use color sparingly—as a little pop of blue to mark out subheadings catches the eye without being overbearing.
Another strategy, and one that’s the complete opposite to Tip 9 above, is to have your resume match the brand of the company you’re applying to. This may seem counter-intuitive but by applying the company’s fonts, colors, style, etc. to your own resume. It shows you did your research and are passionate about the company and about working for it. This is how to design a resume that stands apart from the competition. It’s the kind of creative, out of the box thinking that’ll get you noticed.
You don’t need to include your address on your resume anymore (really!), but you do need to make sure to include a phone number and professional email address (not your work address!) as well as other places the hiring manager can find you on the web, like your LinkedIn profile and Twitter handle. (Implicit in this is that you keep these social media profiles suitable for prospective employers.)
Don’t panic if you don’t have any experience that fits the bill. Instead, Zhang explains, focus your resume on your relevant and transferrable skills along with any related side or academic projects, and then make sure to pair it with a strong cover letter telling the narrative of why you’re ideal for the job.
Before they’ve even met you in person an employer will make judgments about your personality and professional capabilities based on the look of your resume alone. So, make sure those first impressions are as positive as possible, which will improve your chances of getting to the interview stage (where you’ll, of course, wow the interviewer with your sparkling personality). Choosing an elegant, legible typeface and setting it nicely on the page will have more positive impact than a layout weighed down with gradients, eyesore colors and novelty fonts. Show off your creative side in a subtle way, by proving that you know when there’s a time and a place for being ultra-experimental…and for some jobs you may apply for a professional resume isn’t the place to do it.
Structuring the content of your resume, developing a personal brand, or moving your resume onto a digital platform will prove to potential employers that you can problem-solve, and present information in a memorable, skillful way. Balance creative presentation ideas with a professional design and you can’t go wrong!
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