Claire Maé January 30, 2021 Resume
If you’re applying for a job in a creative industry, consider using a horizontal layout instead of a vertical one. This isn’t common practice. So, it’s a great way to stand out and immediately catch the attention of the recruiters.
Make the power words in your resume stand out by using color. Power words are keywords that recruiters will scan for so they can immediately see relevant information. They include resume sections such as skills, education, and experience. Those words can mean all the difference between your resume getting noticed or winding up in the bin. Apply the color directly to the heading, create a colored border around the heading, or add a colored shape to act as a background for that particular heading.
The best place to start when preparing to write a resume is to carefully read the job postings that interest you. As you apply for different jobs, you should study each job description for keywords that show what the employer is looking for in an ideal candidate. Include those keywords in your resume where relevant. For example, if you’re applying for a job as a medical billing coder, an employer might list keywords like “coding,” “claims submission,” “compliance” or “AR management” in the job description. Pay particular attention to anything listed in the sections labeled “Requirements” or “Qualifications.” If you have the skills that employers are looking for, you can add these same terms to your resume in the experience or skills sections.
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.
If you’re sending a portfolio, resume, and cover letter to apply for your dream creative role, think about how you can make all the elements of your application look more unified and professional. Treating your job application as an exercise in branding is a great way to both elevate your application to the next level and prove to your future employer that you can be creative while working within a set of brand rules. Before you begin creating your portfolio, resume, and cover letter, lay down some simple rules for your personal brand.
Triple-check your own work, and then have someone else look over your resume to ensure it’s 100% clean. There is no room for sloppiness on your resume, said Obeid – a hiring manager will likely automatically dismiss your application if they spot a typo or grammatical error.
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