Yet another AskMeFi resume question
March 16, 2009 10:42 PM   Subscribe

How can I make a resume that looks like this using Microsoft Word 2007?

I've been browsing around online and checking out various resume layouts/designs and I found one that I would really like to replicate for my own uses.

Here's the challenge. I only have Microsoft Word 2007 (and the rest of the Office 2007 suite). I'm not a Word power user but I'm also not afraid to get my hands dirty with it - I just don't know where to begin.

Can Word do this? If so, can you help me with some hints to get started? Thank you so much.
posted by karizma to Work & Money (21 answers total) 27 users marked this as a favorite
I would use PowerPoint instead. I find it's way easier than Word for putting chunks of copy (and images) in very specific places.
posted by anthropoid at 11:18 PM on March 16, 2009

This might be way too obvious, but, it's a resume. Have you tried emailing the author and asking what application was used/how it's done?
posted by Precision at 11:19 PM on March 16, 2009

You could get the same effect with a two-column table with the outside border and inside horizontal lines turned off (leaving only the inside vertical line). That wouldn't get you the line fading out at the top and bottom, but you could do the rest.

Does that start you in the right direction?
posted by winston at 11:19 PM on March 16, 2009

It won't be as easy or quite as pretty as if you used InDesign or other page layout software, but yes.

You can drag and drop text-boxes (Inset -> Text-Box) for the placement of text. It might take some work to get everything positioned well, but it is definitely do-able. Under Format -> Align, you have some ability to distribute objects and align them with one another. Format -> Shape Outline will allow you to remove the border of text-boxes.

For the gradient line, you can draw a box (Insert -> Shapes. Under "Basic Shapes"). From there, go to Format -> Shape Fill -> Gradient. You can create a box which fades to white.
posted by HonorShadow at 11:45 PM on March 16, 2009 [2 favorites]

Use a 2 column table with no borders and use wordart, or whatever its called now to do the line/gradient (as a thin box)
posted by wongcorgi at 12:20 AM on March 17, 2009

There are free alternatives to the Adobe suite that you could use to lay out a page like this. You could use the latest version of Scribus and output your finished resume as a PDF. I just checked and it can do this pretty easily. You could even screenshot out the line from that dude's resume and drop it in using an area screengrabber like zapgrab.
posted by Happy Dave at 2:46 AM on March 17, 2009

Job websites nowdays (especially for IT jobs) only take word document format. The agents rarely look at your resume - they do key word searches over all the resumes in their system. So if the job you are looking for is for a 'Technical Architect' with 'farnackle' experience you need to have those words a large number of times in your resume. So for the first phase of looking for a job, the format and appearance is almost irrelevant.

What I do is have an 'on-line' resume with a full page (at the back) dedicated to wining 'buzzword bingo.' Once an agent calls me and wants to put me forward for a role I will give them a different resume more tailored for that role - and one that looks prettier (and can be pdf format). But again, the agents sometimes wrap your resume in their own letter head, ruining your format anyway!!

So ignore what people say about keeping your resume down to a couple of pages - you will not get a high hit rate on the key word searches.

DONT use Word's inbuilt resume style - your resume will look like 95% of the resumes out there and will not stand out.
posted by lamby at 3:17 AM on March 17, 2009 [3 favorites]

Ditto wongcorgi - took the words right out of my mouth.

But also sort of ditto lamby - most places only take Word or other text formats. And a lot of times it doesn't matter what your resume looks like, because it's been translated into a plain text document that is searched for keywords.
posted by LolaGeek at 5:08 AM on March 17, 2009

We're assuming here that the OP is going to use this CV for web applications and job sites, which may not be the case if they're applying direct or leaving the CV after interviews.
posted by Happy Dave at 5:51 AM on March 17, 2009

The easiest way I have found to lay stuff out in word is to use a table, then to hide the borders. It would be pretty straightforward to create a 6x2 table to hold the text in place. The different text could then be formatted appropriately (the format painter tool would be v. useful here for copying the format).

Getting the shaded line down the centre is a bit trickier. Draw a rectangle of the appropriate size then 'format autoshape', pull down the color bar, 'fill effects' and shade appropriately (bottom left variant on my machine).

It looks like a good CV layout, and it's not tough to do it on word. PM me if I can help.

Woo. does this make me a poweruser? Not really I suppose; I wanted this line to be smaller font. Help?
posted by BadMiker at 6:16 AM on March 17, 2009

You should really use InDesign, which is expensive, or Scribus, which is open-source and free. Doing a good layout in Word will take longer than downloading, learning, and using Scribus. Also it will not be as good.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 6:32 AM on March 17, 2009 [1 favorite]

Nthing resumes need to be in Word or RTF format. But I disagree that formatting does not make a difference. Even if they do throw it in a scanner to look for specific words, that is only the first step. Eventually (hopefully) someone will be looking at it. Good layout will make it easy to scan for the information they need and a polished look will make you look professional.
posted by Gor-ella at 6:56 AM on March 17, 2009

If you want a colored line someplace in between the text then use a Three column table with a narrow column in between. Use shading to change the color to an appropriate hue. You can change to width to a sliver of a line, just make sure you have the column margin widths set to 0.
posted by JJ86 at 7:32 AM on March 17, 2009

the last time I updated my resume, I used a very similar layout to this. I used InDesign to make a snazzy, crisp one that I would print on fancy paper for interviews, and I had a less snazzy version of the same in Word for submitting to job sites, email addresses, etc. In Word, I used tables as described by a couple of folks above.
posted by mattybonez at 9:21 AM on March 17, 2009

Give Emurse a shot.
posted by nitsuj at 9:29 AM on March 17, 2009

Not answering your question: do a better job proofreading than that person did.
posted by chesty_a_arthur at 10:11 AM on March 17, 2009

Response by poster: Thank you all for your feedback and help. I appreciate your ideas. I have been tweaking my resume for years and I've just grown really bored with it. Hence, the search for a new layout.

Maybe I will have to find someone with InDesign if I find Word isn't quite the right tool.
posted by karizma at 10:36 AM on March 17, 2009

Response by poster: Oops, I forgot to ask - does anyone have a clue what font this guy might have used in this resume/CV layout?
posted by karizma at 10:39 AM on March 17, 2009

does anyone have a clue what font this guy might have used in this resume/CV layout?

You could probably ask the guy. (Ask what software he used to design it, while you're at it!)
posted by LolaGeek at 11:16 AM on March 17, 2009

The font looks like Verdana.

As far as getting really fancy with your resume, it does depend on the type of business. Something fancy like you show works well for creative professions but probably not good for Accountants or business positions. Design your resume accordingly. While you want to stand out, you don't want to stand out in a peculiar way. Ease of reading is important. HR people don't like to have to work to find relevant data.
posted by JJ86 at 11:17 AM on March 17, 2009

I think everyone is making this too complicated. You can do this in Word with no columns or tables; just set up tabs. Then when you need to move to the next line without starting a new entry, do shift-return instead of return, to insert a line break. Here's a quick sample I whipped up.
posted by raf at 11:32 AM on March 17, 2009 [1 favorite]

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