You may not think format is an important aspect of your resume. Perhaps you think that format doesn’t really count in the overall scheme of the resume game. Believe me when I tell you that the format of your resume could be keeping you from consideration for various roles! I am, of course, talking about the format you use when sharing your resume – versus the formatting used to balance white space and content (words, text boxes and alignment) within your resume.
How can this be, you ask? Some people get tripped up by overlooking submission requirements. Submission requirements are those guidelines, checklists or overall instructions in a job description that indicate how to submit your resume for consideration. Take a close look at these requirements. Some organizations require more information on your resume than a typical employer may. Others require specific information in your cover letter.
Typically, these submission requirements will instruct you to submit your document in either a Word or Adobe (.pdf) document format. Whenever possible, and if not specified, I recommend that you convert your document to a .pdf prior to sharing. This helps preserve the formatting of the content within your resume. Be careful, though, there are some ATS that still only accept Word documents. Prior to submitting your resume, make sure you are meeting all submission requirements in your marketing documents (resume, cover letter, etc.).
As a final thought, prior to converting your document to a .pdf and sharing it, be sure to go into your documents’ properties and remove your resume writer’s name as an author. Whether you had help writing or reviewing your marketing documents, there is no need to advertise that fact to the savvy hiring manager.
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