Your curriculum vitae (CV) is your first point of contact with potential employers, and it needs to be professional and polished to make a good impression. The design and layout of your CV can have a significant impact on how it is perceived, so it’s important to put some thought into how you present your information. When you partner up with recruitment agencies like AltGen, you will get professional, industry-relevant assistance in creating and submitting a professional CV, preparing for the interview, and gaining a career buddy for your job-hunting journey.
Here are some tips to help you use visual design and layout to make your CV even more professional and aesthetically appealing:
- Choose a clean and professional font
One of the easiest ways to make your CV look more professional is to choose a clean and professional font. Avoid fancy or decorative fonts, which can be difficult to read and may make your CV look unprofessional. Instead, opt for a font like Arial, Avenir, Lato, Times New Roman, or Calibri, which are easy to read and widely used. You can use 2 fonts to create stylistic variation, one for the heading and one for the text, but it’s best to have 2 or fewer, otherwise, your document could become too busy. You can get free professional fonts from sites like Google Fonts or 1001 Fonts.
- Use clear headings and bullet points to make your information easily digestible
Use clear headings and bullet points to organize your information and make it easy to scan. Headings should be bold and easy to distinguish from the rest of the text, and bullet points should be used to break up long paragraphs and highlight key points. That being said, you still want to include paragraphs where relevant for flow, such as your intro.
- Use white/negative space effectively
Don’t be afraid of white space. It can help make your CV look more polished and professional by making it easier to read and navigate. Use margins and line spacing to create enough white space around your text, and avoid cramming too much information onto one page. Use the principles and elements of graphic design to maximise the look and feel oif your personal CV, you can find out more about this on Lifewire or Adobe.
- Keep it simple and consistent – legibility is still the most important factor
Avoid using too many different fonts, colours or graphics in your CV. A simple and consistent design will look more professional and be easier to read. Stick to one or two fonts and a colour scheme that complements your content. It is better to add a splash of design elements or colours and keep it cohesive and clear rather than create something that is too chaotic or disjointed.
- Use visual elements sparingly and always consider overall look and feel
While a well-placed graphic or icon can help highlight important information, it’s important to use visual elements sparingly. Too many graphics can make your CV look cluttered and unprofessional. Use them only when they add value to your content. Remember, this is a professional document and while visual aspects can create a pleasing experience for the viewer, you want to avoid things that could distract from your professional profile, such as frivolous illustrations or irrelevant photos. If you are going to include a photo of yourself make sure it does look formal and professional, avoid using very informal and casual selfies etc.
- Consider using a professional template
If you’re not confident in your design skills, consider using a CV template. There are many free templates available online that you can customize to suit your needs. Just be sure to choose one that is professional and appropriate for your field and the role you are applying for. It’s best to rather go with something more simplistic and captivating than something more arty or busy. Remember to have an idea of your content before choosing your CV template to ensure the format will be cohesive with your information. Agencies like AltGen use bespoke CV templates that are compiled for you so that you don’t have to worry. If you need to source some free CV templates, you can find them at Adobe, Resume.io or Indeed.
In conclusion, the design and layout of your CV can have a significant impact on how it is perceived by potential employers. By choosing a clean and professional font, using clear headings and bullet points, using white space effectively, keeping it simple and consistent, using visual elements sparingly, and considering using a template, you can make your CV even more professional and increase your chances of landing your dream job.