By Peter Newfield
How do you stand out from the crowd when the world is mostly online? An infographic resume is one answer.
Adding An Infographic Attitude
Information noise is increasing every day. We don’t read, we scan. You can counteract this overwhelm by creating an infographic resume. Typically, recruiters only take 7 seconds to look at a single resume.
Adding infographic elements to your resume is one way to grab that attention back. We see graphics in a totally different way than plain text. It pops and we read it like we look at a painting. You can use this to your advantage in your job hunt. Infographics are increasingly used in advertising and social media marketing, so they’re easily recognizable. If you’re already in a creative field, it’s a great way to showcase your talents, but no matter what your career path is, visually representing your data is a modern and up to date method to get your point across.
How to Get Started With Your Infographic Resume
First, gather your information. You might want to represent it in an easily movable way like with sticky notes or index cards. You will likely have more data points than will fit within a graphic representation of your resume, so the next step is to create an outline. Try arranging all the elements of your resume in different ways, see what fits and what doesn’t fit, both thematically and visually. In graphic design, less is more, and when you’re making an infographic resume, you’re putting on your graphic design hat.
After you’ve created an outline and decided which parts of your resume should be represented and which should be cut, it’s time to choose your color scheme and begin to visualize the information. Make sure that you’re creating a logical structure to your information with clear flow and layout. Timelines, pie charts, graphs, and icons are all excellent ways to visualize data and represent it graphically. Analyze your outline to see what parts of your resume can be rendered into graphs or represented by icons.
Once you’ve got some idea of how you’re going to represent your data visually, it’s time to choose the colors. Again, less is more. Choose one dominant color and then one or two colors to complement and create accents. Then stick to those colors. If you really must add another color element, consider using a medium or light grey to create contrast without visually overstimulating the viewer. There are infographic templates and makers available online that can help you to make something based on sound design principles.
Less is always more when it comes to visually representing data. Choose what you share carefully and make it complement rather than repeat your traditional resume.
Some Do’s and Don’ts of Using Your Infographic Resume
- Do send both your infographic and your standard resume to prospective employers.
- Don’t use an infographic resume for executive-level positions.
- Do think carefully about your color choices and layout.
- Don’t overcrowd your infographic with too much information.
- Do have some fun with this flexible format.
- Don’t ignore the importance of your traditional resume.
Infographic resumes can be an excellent addition to your traditional resume, when you are looking to stand out from a large crowd of applicants or when you’re in a creative or marketing field. Take some time to research infographics and how to use them effectively if you’ve never made one before, and always make sure your resume is focused on your career goals.