There are very few documents you will write in your lifetime that are more important than your resume. Let’s face it, for most of us, all of those high school reports or college essays are a means to an end: a great career.
As a professional resume designer and career-branding expert, I use all kinds of techniques to help my clients secure their dream jobs, but most of these techniques require professional design skills. However, the following resume hack even a novice resume writer could use in a pinch.
Extend your resume without adding another page
I can’t even count the number of times a client has requested a one-page resume or a resume ends up being a few lines over a page. From a design standpoint, a resume is one or two pages – nothing in between. As a designer, I know that margins are too important to decrease because top and bottom space set the eyes of the reader. Also, you don’t want to give a potential employer the impression that you crammed everything in.
So, how do I expand a client’s resume without decreasing top and bottom margins?
I increase the size of the page. Thirty years ago, this wouldn’t have been a good idea because job seekers mailed in their resumes and odd size pages would be difficult for employers to physically file away. Now, resumes are sent electronically and filed electronically, so page length doesn’t matter as much.
A page doesn’t have to be 8.5X11 anymore
So, the next time you find yourself desperate for space on your resume, make the resume 8.5X12 or even 8.5X13. Trust me, no one will notice. See for yourself. The resume below is 8.5X12.5.
I use design software that makes it easy to change page size, but if you have Adobe Acrobat PDF, Word and Powerpoint, you can use the following easy steps to change your page size without affecting the layout.
If You’re Working in Microsoft Word
1. Open your resume
2. Go to “layout” and under “page set up,” hit “size”
3. From the dropdown, scroll to “more paper sizes”
4. Under “paper size,” change the height to your preferred height.
Tip: Start with a slightly larger size because you can always adjust the height to your content when your done. If you start smaller, and need more space, you’ll have to repeat this process.
If you’re working with a pdf
1. Open your resume in pdf and go to “file,” then “export to,” then “Microsoft Powerpoint Presentation”
2. Save your resume.
3. Open in Powerpoint and go to “Design” then “Slide Size”
4. Change the size of your resume.
That’s it. You can even add to your resume right from Powerpoint.
For people using over-the-counter resume design software, most make it relatively easy to alter the page size of their templates.
As a resume designer and career-branding expert, I can spot a resume template in California, and I live in New York, so I design from concept. However, these services fulfill a great need for do-it-yourselfers, so I’m not hating.
Remember, don’t try to jam important resume information on a page that’s too small or leave important information “dangling” on page two. Just increase your page size and you’ll be good to go.
Happy job hunting!