Today’s news alerted me to a new rule about resumes: don’t use Times New Roman font. Why? Bloomberg Business reported that Times New Roman is the equivalent of showing up to an interview in sweatpants. Tried and true, supposedly, is no longer true. The article, linked above, suggests fonts for the type of job you are applying for such as Garamond and Helvetica; and fonts to avoid. What the article doesn’t tell us is that the so called “rules” keep changing because there is as many opinions about resumes as there are Human Resource managers (or robots) reviewing them.
Most of us know, and struggle with, the one page rule. But have you ever asked why? The reason behind the one page rule is that hiring managers have short attention spans. The Office of Career Services at MSU Denver and the CU Denver Career Center have documents and advisors that say the one page resume is best. I have recently heard that the “rules” are changing and that the one pager is following in the footsteps of good old Times New Roman.
If you want to stand out in a sea of one page resumes in Times New Roman font, add a little pizazz to your resume.The majority of people I’ve spoken to about the subject (graduates, classmates, and co-workers) say the cover letter is your opportunity to show your personality, not your resume. My favorite InFluencer, Liz Ryan, advises the opposite approach. Her advice is to write a “Human-Voiced Resume.” She suggests job seekers to defy the non-creative approach by using the word “I” in their resume. “You’re writing about yourself, so it’s perfectly appropriate to use the word “I” a few times.” In another post, she gives the advice I so desperately wanted to read: your resume should represent who you are, not just what you’ve done. If you are a creative person, like me, your personality is your biggest selling point. Show, don’t tell, how creative you are by sending a unique resume that tells your story. Creative people can tackle any problem by thinking inside, outside, and around the box – a skill every employer is looking for.
Do you customize your resume to the job and company you are applying with? Customizing your resume each time you apply could leave you with a folder that is out of control. My suggestion is to customize your resume by job type. For me this looks like a folder for my Administrative resume, Academic resume, and Marketing resume. Each resume is customized according to what the position requires which leaves me more time to customize my cover letter with the company and specific position in mind.
Please leave your feedback and share your job search results, rules, and recommendations with me.
Time to change out of my sweats and into my highly fashionable and creative fonts.