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7 Creative Resume Design Layouts That Will Set You Apart

7 Creative Resume Design Layouts That Will Set You Apart

Whether you’re a recent graduate or a season worker, you already know that the job market is saturated right now with many, many job seekers. Employers are often inundated with applications – according to Inc. Magazineevery corporate job opening receives 250 applications, on average. It can be easy for your application to get lost in the crowd. I know a depressingly large number of people personally who have gone more than a year at a time trying to find a new job, with no luck.

But don’t lose hope! There are steps you can take to make a resume that will distinguish you from the crowd while still remaining professional and practical. If you’re not confident in your design chops, there are a number of sites that offer resume templates. But the more personalized you make your resume, the better.

This article will walk you through 7 creative resume design layouts that will set you apart from other applicants.

A word of caution: the type of design layout you use for your resume should depend on the kind of company you are applying for. Research the company to try and get a sense of their values and company culture before applying.

It’s a good idea to also have a traditional resume on hand for cases where a company probably wouldn’t be receptive to an outside-the-box resume. When you’re not certain if you should use your creatively designed resume, submit a traditional resume and bring your creative resume to the interview as an example of what you can do.

1. Classic Layout With a Twist

You might be a bit nervous about making a resume that’s too out there and outside of the box. That’s OK. The fact is, some companies won’t be as receptive to unusual, outside of the box resumes. But that doesn’t mean your resume have to be just like everybody else’s – you can use small design embellishments to give your resume a little something different while still maintaining a classic, simple layout.

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For example, you can use pictograms to illustrate things like skill level, interests, social media accounts, or anything that can be represented by an icon.You can also add some flare to a traditional resume by using colours and different fonts as accents. A pop of colour will make your resume more visually interesting without distracting from the bare-bone information. This will make your resume more visually interesting than a traditional resume, while still maintaining the tried resume format.

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    2. Timeline Layout

    If you want to highlight your professional journey in your resume, a timeline is an effective layout. The easiest way to do this is to map your work experience in chronological order from left to right or from the top to the bottom of the page. The example below resembles a traditional resume, but uses a timeline as a way to organize and connect each section.

    timeline 11

      But you could also get more even more creative and use your timeline resume to tell a story, like this freelance designer did in her resume.

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      timeline resume ex

        3. Picture Perfect Layout

        The rule of thumb used to be that you shouldn’t include a photo on your resume. But with more focus being given to visual content and with the prominence of social media, attitudes towards photos on resumes seems to be changing. After all even if you don’t include a photo on your resume, employers can easily search for your social media profiles to see what you look like. And if the photo you include in your resume reflects the culture of the company you are applying for, you will seem like a better fit for their team.

        Think about it: how many people tell you that they suck at remembering names? But faces are easier to remember. Include a photograph in your resume to make your resume more memorable than the hundreds of other applications that are only words. Make sure the picture you use isn’t so big or high resolution that it makes your resume file huge. If your file is too big, employers will get frustrated when they try to download it. Take the employer’s convenience into consideration.

        If including a photograph on your resume is still feels like too much, provide the links for your Twitter, Linked In, and Facebook.

        97c44d4e-8b44-4d51-9778-440e38d2a860 (1)

          4. Map Layout

          If you’ve worked in a number of remote and exciting locations, or if the work you have done has impacted people in different locations, a map chart can be a fun and effective way to visualize that. The map chart can act as a visual embellishment for your Experience section. The example below uses a map to show where the applicant has lived and worked, without taking too much attention away from the rest of her resume.

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          map resume 1

            You could also take the same route as this person and design your resume to resemble a map itself, to signify the route your career has taken/the route you would like it to take moving forward. A layout like this is a lot more complicated and time consuming to design, though.

            map ex 2

              5. Graphs and Charts Layout

              If you don’t want to make the focus of your resume a single chart, you can still use charts and graphs to visualize certain key achievements. For example, if your work in a past position drove a notable increase in sales for the company, you could visualize the increase using a line chart. You could also use a bar graph to show your skill level in certain programs.

              A word to the wise: keep your charts simple and make sure you select the right type of chart for the information you are communicating. A poorly made chart will only confuse readers – the opposite of what you want on your resume!

              Take the CV below, which uses a combination of different charts and icons to communicate the applicant’s experience.

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              cv ex

                6. Sectional Layout

                This is a simple way to reimagine a traditional resume layout. Rather than following a traditional top-to-bottom design, you can organize your resume into sections using borders or blocks of color. The example below shows how some simple lines can create a beautiful and minimalist sectional resume layout.

                section cv

                  7. Slideshow Resume

                  Many workplaces want their employees to be fluent in multimedia tech. You can showcase your multimedia creation skills by creating a slideshow presentation. A presentation offers you the opportunity to use lots of visuals and a storytelling structure to introduce yourself. For an example, check out this man‘s short but sweet resume slideshow.

                  A note: this kind of resume should generally be offered as an accompaniment to a traditional resume, in case the employers has difficulty loading or downloading you multimedia file.

                  Whatever You Do, Do it Well!

                  This is the most important point: whatever resume design layout you decide to use, make sure you use it well. This means that your resume must be free of surface errors like text misalignment, weird spacing, chartjunk, or any other formatting issues. You also need to make sure that you don’t neglect essential information for the sake of a cool design. Your previous places of employment, contact information, and list of skills should all be easy to read and understand.

                  Remember, your resume is the very first impression prospective employers will have of you – so make it count!

                  Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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                  Last Updated on October 13, 2020

                  How to Get Promoted When You Feel Stuck in Your Current Position

                  How to Get Promoted When You Feel Stuck in Your Current Position

                  Have you been stuck in the same position for too long and don’t really know how to get promoted and advance your career?

                  Feeling stuck could be caused by a variety of things:

                  • Taking a job for the money
                  • Staying with an employer that no longer aligns with your values
                  • Realizing that you landed yourself in the wrong career
                  • Not feeling valued or feeling underutilized
                  • Taking a position without a full understanding of the role

                  There are many other reasons why you may be feeling this way, but let’s focus instead on learning what to do now in order to get unstuck and get promoted

                  One of the best ways to get promoted is by showing how you add value to your organization. Did you make money, save money, improve a process, or do some other amazing thing? How else might you demonstrate added value?

                  Let’s dive right in to how to get promoted when you feel stuck in your current position.

                  1. Be a Mentor

                  When I supervised students, I used to warm them — tongue in cheek, of course — about getting really good at their job.

                  “Be careful not to get too good at this, or you’ll never get to do anything else.”

                  This was my way of pestering them to take on additional challenges or think outside the box, but there is definitely some truth in doing something so well that your manager doesn’t trust anyone else to do it.

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                  This can get you stuck.

                  Jo Miller of Be Leaderly shares this insight on when your boss thinks you’re too valuable in your current job:

                  “Think back to a time when you really enjoyed your current role…You became known for doing your job so well that you built up some strong ‘personal brand’ equity, and people know you as the go-to-person for this particular job. That’s what we call ‘a good problem to have’: you did a really good job of building a positive perception about your suitability for the role, but you may have done ‘too’ good of a job!”[1]

                  With this in mind, how do you prove to your employer that you can add value by being promoted?

                  From Miller’s insight, she talks about building your personal brand and becoming known for doing a particular job well. So how can you link that work with a position or project that will earn you a promotion?

                  Consider leveraging your strengths and skills.

                  Let’s say that the project you do so well is hiring and training new entry-level employees. You have to post the job listing, read and review resumes, schedule interviews, make hiring decisions, and create the training schedules. These tasks require skills such as employee relations, onboarding, human resources software, performance management, teamwork, collaboration, customer service, and project management. That’s a serious amount of skills!

                  Are there any team members who can perform these skills? Try delegating and training some of your staff or colleagues to learn your job. There are a number of reasons why this is a good idea:

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                  1. Cross-training helps in any situation in the event that there’s an extended illness and the main performer of a certain task is out for a while.
                  2. As a mentor to a supervisee or colleague, you empower them to increase their job skills.
                  3. You are already beginning to demonstrate that added value to your employer by encouraging your team or peers to learn your job and creating team players.

                  Now that you’ve trained others to do that work for which you have been so valued, you can see about re-requesting that promotion. Explain how you have saved the company money, encouraged employees to increase their skills, or reinvented that project of yours.

                  2. Work on Your Mindset

                  Another reason you may feel stuck in a position is explained through this quote:

                  “If you feel stuck at a job you used to love, it’s normally you—not the job—who needs to change. The position you got hired for is probably the exact same one you have now. But if you start to dread the work routine, you’re going to focus on the negatives.”[2]

                  In this situation, you should pursue a conversation with your supervisor and share your thoughts and feelings to help you learn how to get promoted. You can probably get some advice on how to rediscover the aspects of that job you enjoyed, and negotiate either some additional duties or a chance to move up.

                  Don’t express frustration. Express a desire for more.

                  Present your case and show your boss or supervisor that you want to be challenged, and you want to move up. You want more responsibility in order to continue moving the company forward. Focus on how you can do that with the skills you have and the positive mindset you’ve cultivated.

                  3. Improve Your Soft Skills

                  When was the last time you put focus and effort into upping your game with those soft skills? I’m talking about those seemingly intangible things that make you the experienced professional in your specific job skills[3].

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                  Use soft skills when learning how to get promoted.

                    According to research, improving soft skills can boost productivity and retention 12 percent and deliver a 250 percent return on investment based on higher productivity and retention[4]. Those are only some of the benefits for both you and your employer when you want to learn how to get promoted.

                    You can hone these skills and increase your chances of promotion into a leadership role by taking courses or seminars.

                    Furthermore, you don’t necessarily need to request funding from your supervisor. There are dozens of online courses being presented by entrepreneurs and authors about these very subjects. Udemy and Creative Live both feature online courses at very reasonable prices. And some come with completion certificates for your portfolio!

                    Another way to improve your soft skills is by connecting with an employee at your organization who has a position similar to the one you want.

                    Express your desire to move up in the organization, and ask to shadow that person or see if you can sit in on some of their meetings. Offer to take that individual out for coffee and ask what their secret is! Take copious notes, and then immerse yourself in the learning.

                    The key here is not to copy your new mentor. Rather, you want to observe, learn, and then adapt according to your strengths.

                    4. Develop Your Strategy

                    Do you even know specifically why you want to learn how to get promoted? Do you see a future at this company? Do you have a one-year, five-year, or ten-year plan for your career path? How often do you consider your “why” and insure that it aligns with your “what”?

                    Sit down and make an old-fashioned pro and con list.

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                    Write down every positive aspect of your current job and then every negative one. Which list is longer? Are there any themes present?

                    Look at your lists and choose the most exciting pros and the most frustrating cons. Do those two pros make the cons worth it? If you can’t answer that question with a “yes,” then getting promoted at your current organization may not be what you really want[5].

                    The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why. —Mark Twain

                    Here are some questions to ask yourself:

                    • Why do you do what you do?
                    • What thrills you about your current job role or career?
                    • What does a great day look like?
                    • What does success look and feel like beyond the paycheck?
                    • How do you want to feel about your impact on the world when you retire?

                    Define success to get promoted

                      These questions would be great to reflect on in a journal or with your supervisor in your next one-on-one meeting. Or, bring it up with one of your work friends over coffee.

                      Final Thoughts

                      After considering all of these points and doing your best to learn how to get promoted, what you might find is that being stuck is your choice. Then, you can set yourself on the path of moving up where you are, or moving on to something different.

                      Because sometimes the real promotion is finding your life’s purpose.

                      More Tips on How to Get Promoted

                      Featured photo credit: Razvan Chisu via unsplash.com

                      Reference

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