Insights on Writing your Résumé
A lot can be read from your résumé. It is probably the first information that an employer will hear of you and therefore it serves as an introduction to you as a person and as a professional designer. It’s your one-page portfolio. It’s the virtual you.
Your résumé serves as a professional introduction of your related employment experiences, educational history and unique interests in an outline form. It is typically used as a reference sheet by a potential employer to get a sense of your qualifications, interests and experiences related to an employment opportunity. The résumé itself is definitely information, which should demand undivided attention. It needs to be designed. As a designer, it also is an opportunity for you to display your layout, typographic and general visual organizational skills. Therefore, it must indicate clear understanding of grouping and hierarchy, prioritization, and readability of typographic information. Your choice of typefaces and typography, the layout and the organization of information, the paper stock, etc., all contribute to the way you will be perceived as a potential designer. It also shows what you can do on a single piece of paper. But high wire acts are dangerous, so keep it simple and readable. (Even David Carson’s business card is ultimately readable.) No elaborate personal logos, please, especially if you’re just out of school. It’s a bit pretentious. As you create and organize the personal information on your résumé, approach it as a design problem where the subject is you.
Your résumé needs to motivate to ask for your portfolio. Your education and work experiences are very important, but ultimately it’s the live you, your work and presentation, which make someone want to hire you.
Typical organization for a recent college graduate might include:
- A brief sentence which, indicates what type of work you are seeking (an artist’s statement)
- A category for educational history, include software proficiency
- A category for employment history, include your responsibilities
- A category of special interests, hobbies, awards or recognitions
Consistency is extremely important. The order and look you establish for information such as place, address & year for each entry should remain the same for each entry. Use typographic forms of emphasis such as bold or italics on different information in a consistent manner. The rule here is to treat similar forms of information in a similar fashion.
For example, here are two different formats showing a consistent order and typographic style being applied to both an entry from Employment and also an entry from Education;
- Do not write the word résumé on the résumé
- Be sure to proofread and spell check thoroughly
- Use correct forms of punctuation such as en and em dashes (not hyphens), typographer’s quotes, and typographer’s apostrophes (not ditto or foot marks)
- References available upon request or on a separate reference sheet (be sure you have permission to use those references).
- It is not a poster, visibility from across the room usually means that the type is probably too large in size.
Create a PDF version of your final résumé
- From your “About Me” tab, add a link to the PDF (this will be a printable version. (click the Add Media button to do this) The résumé itself will not be visible on your website, only the link to download it.