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Formatting Your Resume

You may wonder how to effectively design your resume to grab a recruiter’s attention and highlight your experience and skills adequately. Making a resume clear and easy on the eyes can be the difference between getting noticed and skipped over.

Font and Spacing

It may be tempting to want to fit as much information as possible on your resume, decreasing the margins, shrinking the spacing, and lowering the font size to 4. RESIST TEMPTATION. Use a basic and easy-to-read font like Calibri or Times New Roman. Do not use a font size smaller than 10 point. You want the recruiter to be able to read all the information you filled the page with! Keep standard margins and line spacing as either 1.0 or 1.15.

Creative or Simple?

The answer to this question may be different when applying for a job in an artistic field, but in general, keep your resume as simple as possible. Although it may seem appealing to have a “pretty” looking resume, it usually makes it more challenging to read. Stick with simple black and white—if you must, you could use gray if you wanted to separate some text/let it fade into the background (e.g., dates of employment). Remember K I S S: keep it simple, Sandler! (Adam Sandler is NOTORIOUS for his impeccably simple resumes).

Length

You have probably heard the age-old rule—don’t let your resume spill over one page! Is this true? YES. . .and no. If you are newer to the job market, stick to only one page. You CAN go over a page if you have over ten years of experience. If you are struggling to pare down your work experience, take off any experience that is not relevant to the job for which you are applying. Examine your job descriptions and make sure they are as succinct as possible.

 Looking for help with the content of your resume? Check out this previous article we posted about writing an effective resume!

 

Should You Include Hobbies On Your Resume?

Career Coach Sonal Bahl recently shared a controversial opinion: that you should absolutely include hobbies on your resume! While she was undoubtedly met with the expected backlash, such as “this is not Facebook,” there were also many people who were open to setting yourself apart by highlighting your passions. In fact, according to a LinkedIn poll, 45% of respondents think you should always include your hobbies on your resume, and 33% believe you should add them if they are relevant to the job. Our opinion? It depends!

When You Shouldn’t Include Hobbies On Your Resume

If you work in a straight-laced industry such as banking, law, or professional services, you want to exercise discretion. Typically, these industries will be looking for a more professional overview of your career. If you choose to include hobbies, keep them achievement-focused. Feature hobbies such as marathons, interest in languages, or business-related podcasts you follow.

When You Should Include Hobbies On Your Resume

If you are in a more sales-oriented or creative role, it can be extremely beneficial to highlight a few of your hobbies. Let your personality shine to set you apart from the competition. Choose something that speaks to your identity and how you will perform on the job. Sonal mentioned clients who included “enjoy baking. Probably bake the world’s most delicious brownie,” or “Absolutely devoted to my daily 10k run since 2006. Come rain, shine, or snow.” Those candidates both got called for interviews, and the hiring manager specifically mentioned the hobbies that they had included.

Things To Keep In Mind

Now, just because hiring managers are interested in hearing about your hobbies doesn’t mean you should include everything that interests you. Carefully select the hobbies you want to include. Do not list things that won’t add to your marketability like binge-watching Netflix, hanging out at clubs, or expert nap-taker. Also, be sure that the activities you include are things you’re actually passionate about! The purpose of adding hobbies to your resume is to stand out and establish a connection with the hiring manager. So, chances are that they will mention it during your interview with the expectation that you will speak thoughtfully on the topic.

In the end, it’s entirely up to you and what you feel comfortable with. Don’t feel pressured to include hobbies on your resume if it doesn’t feel natural to you. And on the other side, make sure the hobbies you do list contribute to your professional persona.

Interested in more resume tips? Click here to get your resume up to par.