Creating the BEST Resume

In order to get hired in today’s competitive job/internship market, your resume needs to stand out from the crowd. Sometimes, you need that extra bit of flair to grab the attention of a potential employer. The design of your resume offers the great opportunity to demonstrate your skills and creativity in relation to your field and the job you are applying for. Here are some handy tips to help you get started:

Give ’em what they want— Do some significant research on the company you’re applying to and organize your resume based off of the specific company and position you’re applying for. Always include experience, skills, and other information that’s relevant and meant to show your potential employer how you can add value to their company.

Avoid clutter—especially with that flair you’re adding. The goal is for it to be visually irresistible and aesthetically pleasing, not a cluttered mess of unnecessary, overly-complex embellishments.

Legible text and font—arguably the most important part of your resume is your potential employer’s ability to read it! Too many resumes use shrunken, boring, and, inconsistent serif fonts that don’t direct the reader down the page smoothly. Make sure that your text is at least 12pt sized, organized clearly, and is in a font that is instantly and easily readable.

serif A and sans-serif AColors should pop—when applying to more creative positions in areas like marketing and graphic arts. It’s important to demonstrate your appreciation for the power of design. Add a small splash of color to make your work stand out in a world of the boring black-and-white, Times New Roman, run-of-the-mill resumes.

Colors should not pop—when applying to more technical positions in areas like engineering and finance where you should be more conservative with your use of color. Resumes for these positions would benefit from an extremely straightforward, readable text font. It is more important to inform and impress through the content of your experience and skills rather than how well you present them artistically.

Avoid fonts like—Comic Sans, Courier, Brush Script, Papyrus, or Impact—intricate, overused text fonts.

Stick to fonts like—Helvetica, Verdana, and Georgia for small text and use fonts like Bookman Old Style, Garamond, and Century for titles, headings, and subheadings. Stick to straightforward text fonts whenever possible.

Here are some examples of resumes we love that demonstrate a solid understanding of who their potential employers are and how to appeal to them through their design layouts:
resume 1 and 2

1. Here is a graphic designer’s resume that employs the use of colorful overlapping shapes to grab attention. Although it may appear complicated, this resume employs basic shapes that guide the eyes across the page, and utilizes only three main colors. The simplified text font is light and slim with slightly different shades of black and gray throughout the text on the page.

2. This type of simply designed resume with a passive use of color is recommended for jobs in moderately creative fields. This resume uses the timeline motif to list the person’s experience along with his education at the bottom right. His contact information is set off to the right side of the page and at the top margin on highlighted areas that allow the reader to easily distinguish the contact information from the resume content. Putting your information along the top margin of the page can be the standout difference that can cause your potential employer to pull your resume out of the stack!

BIG 3 4

3. This is a straightforward template for a software engineer’s resume. The majority of the text is legible sans-serif font with the exception of the area designated for the name of the person. Notice how well the different sections are organized with bulleted lists and spacing from both the left and right margins. The bold all uppercase text is satisfying to the eye, with the added subtly of the first letter of some of the words being slightly larger than the rest. If you will notice, “Objective,” “Skills & Abilities,” “Volunteering Experience,” etc. all have the first letter of each word slightly larger than the font size of the rest of the world’s letters. Making text easy to read is like lighting a campfire; first you start with a spark (the larger first letter of the subheadings), then small kindling (all caps bold subheadings), and then the essential firewood (the text content).

4. This one is a fun one, just in case you were thinking about applying for a job at Google. Using this format is not only thinking outside the box but could demonstrate how well you can know and understand the logic, character, and humor of a company. Attempting to be funny on some level in a resume is automatically taking the risk that the potential employer will not get the joke or will not think it is funny. But occasionally, it’s worth a try. This is not recommended for any position that can be considered strictly serious and business regimented. However, in general, thinking outside the box and pulling it off effectively is a great way to set yourself apart from the competition and show how well you understand and researched the company or brand.

Written by Guest Blogger, Dan H. of Emerson College

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What do you think of these creative resume layouts? Would you ever try one yourself?

No matter what you do with your resume, keep it professional but also keep it YOU! Employers want to get a better understanding of you as a possible employee but also as a person, so don’t just be another plain ol’ resume filled with cliched descriptions, be you! Check out our Career Now board on Pinterest for some more great tips on creating the best resume possible.

Have any tips or tricks that have worked in the past? Share them with us @BnCollege!

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