30 May in  Working with PDF

5 Resume Formatting Tips – Curriculum Vitae Tips



Falling victim to the myth that style doesn’t matter is forgivable when it comes to mismatched shoes and belt, but in terms of resume formatting ignoring style and formatting particulars will land you at the bottom of the pile, or worse, in the trash. Make sure you are using a good CV template to start with.

About.com offers many templates and generic tips on which one to choose based on your expertize and niche. You can go to jobsearch.about.com to get your copy. Once you open it with Soda PDF 6, it will automatically convert to PDF securing all the formatting.


1 – Pay attention to styling, fancy isn’t always better

Depending on the format you choose or are required to use, bullet points, fonts and stylistic elements may not appear the way you intended when the file is opened by the recipient. These issues can be managed by embedding the font, although that doesn’t eliminate issues altogether. Stick with default fonts and standard formats; never use a custom font if you want your resume to be viewable. The video below demonstrates how you can edit fonts using the Soda PDF software. Remember, when it comes to styling, less is more.



We like Helvetica, any simple font that is not fancy will work just fine.


2 – Visual appeal is essential

More important than style and even actual content is correctness. While using the Soda PDF editor to add and edit your information, chances are you will making a few “typo errors”. Typos or grammatical errors could cost you an interview. Often each resume is glanced over initially in 30 seconds or less. Typos will ensure it doesn’t receive a second look.

Next, don’t commit resume fraud by embellishing your achievements or lying on your resume. Although stretching the truth might help you secure the position, if your lie is discovered it will more often than not cost you the job later down the road.


3 – Be purposeful with word choices

All of the information you include should be relevant to the position and company you are targeting, but more than that, the specific words you choose need to be tailored to catch the reader’s eye. Begin phrases with action verbs and avoid repeating the same word throughout the text.


Don’t use industry jargon that doesn’t fit with the job target, especially if you’re making a career transition. Delete extraneous phrases and keep sentences short. All information needs to be specific, don’t use vague phrases or generalizations.


4 – Format your resume for electronic sending

Resumes are often emailed to employers and in some cases posted directly to a website. To protect your privacy it’s important to avoid posting your resume in a Word processed version—unless specifically requested by an employer. PDF formatting boasts the advantage of guaranteeing your resume will appear the same to any viewer regardless of the type of computer they are using.


An added bonus is the additional security PDF formatting lends to your documents. Unlike other formats, your file will be invulnerable to viruses. Make sure you edit the PDF properties of your CV. You do not want “John smith” to be the writer and owner of your resume.


See the video below for how you can do that through Soda PDF:



5 – Ensure your resume is readable

Pay attention to the formatting guidelines laid out by the specific employer. Most generally want resumes and cover letters to be sent as a PDF file (.pdf) or Microsoft Word file (.doc). Avoid sending a .docx file—the current default version of Microsoft Word—not all systems can open and read these files, and in some cases it may appear a garbled mess to employers. Convert your CV to PDF to lock your formatting and to keep your information where you really want it to be.


Once this is complete you can start working on the changes you want to make. If you are on the run you can use our  Free PDF Converter . Note though that online converters will not offer you the full functionality of a PDF software.


Finally, before sending your resume to a potential employer, send it to yourself so you can double check for errors in formatting and if possible send it to someone else who can look it over for any errors you might have missed.


We hope you liked this post. Do you think there is something we are forgetting?Share your CV formatting tips with us.

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