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Pay Attention to Resume Layouts

... And Get Powerful Results
No Matter What Resume Formats You Use!

resume layouts expert

Use the correct rules from about resume layouts that give you a resume that POPS.

I highly recommend this resource for building powerful resumes!

In previous sections of this site, we've talked about resume formats, resume content, resume design, resume fonts, resume wording, and job-specific resumes. On this page, we're going to look at the various resume layouts you can use, such as:

  • Traditional, one-column resume layout
  • Two-column resume layout
  • Left-aligned resume layout
  • Centered resume layout
  • Indented resume layout
Resume layouts vary; which is your preference?

But before we get into individual types of layouts, it's important to note that resume layout also includes your use of white space and graphical elements.

Most experts recommend that you keep your resume to one page, but this can be difficult if you've been in the career force for more than a few years.

So, don't sweat it; go to 2 pages if you must. But just keep in mind that you need to be as clear and concise as you possibly can be.

All resume layouts should have equal margins on all 4 sides... 1 inch to 1.25 inches is good. Using lines, shaded boxes and small graphics such as arrows can work well, if used in moderation.

Look through some of our resume templates to get a feel for how graphics can be used successfully. Of course, you must know your market too. For example, a creative, graphic-enhanced resume may go over much better for a web designer than it will for a loan officer at a bank. Use wise judgment.

Now let's take a look at the various resume layouts and what sets them apart from each other...

Traditional, One-column Resume Layout

With this layout, your objective or skills summary, job history, and education are listed one after the other down the page, in blocks. All lines are left-justified.

one-column resume layouts

Two-column Resume Layouts

This layout gets a bit more creative and consists of headings in the far left column, such as Skills, Employment History, etc., and the corresponding bullets or paragraphs in the right column.

2-column resume layouts

Left-aligned Resume Layouts

With this layout, all of your headings and corresponding bullets are left-aligned underneath each other. This can give a nice, clean look to a short resume, especially.

left-aligned layout

Centered Resume Layout

Although centered text can be hard to read, with the right use of formatting and other layout features, this layout can create an elegant resume for certain purposes.

centered resume layout

Resume layout may or may not = resume format

Much of your decision in which resume layouts to consider will be personal. With different fonts and spacing, it is possible to create an endless number of variations. For best results, try 2 or 3 different layouts with your information and see which one "feels" the best. It never hurts to get a second—or third—or fourth opinion, either!

Confused? Don't be. I have an answer for you... If you don't want to have to worry about choosing a resume layout, then I highly recommend you check out this online resume builder website, where you'll find an easy-to-use interface that enables you to create and submit your resume and a cover letter. There's a super cool free trial too.

Try this online resume builder for free

Learn More About Writing a Resume

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