June 22, 2014

The Only File Format For Your Resume

Resumes are a big deal. They summarize who you are, what you’ve accomplished, and what skills you have in a short and sweet one (or two) page summary. Your resume is often the deciding factor as to whether you land a job interview or your application gets tossed in garbage.

It’s a wise decision to get your resume as dialed in as possible. It’s up to you to constantly keep your resume up-to-date (this is easy to do with your free JobMonkeyJobs account) and ready to send off. Is your resume ready to send off? Do you know the best way to send your resume?

First, there are several ways to send in your resume:

  • Email – Email is a popular way to send your resume. You will need a digital copy of your resume that is in a universally recognized file format that you can attach to the email. Unless directions explicitly say so, never cut and paste your resume into the body of the email (or Facebook message).
  • Fax – Yes, some companies still use fax as a viable form of communication. This requires a hard or digital copy of your resume that you can send via software or via fax machine to the company. It also typically requires a land line for the phone. Be sure to create a cover sheet and fill in the ATTN: box.
  • Snail Mail – It’s not uncommon for applications to be accepted via snail mail. When you send your resume via USPS, FedEx, or UPS you will need to send a hard copy of your resume. Consider what size envelope you will use to ensure your resume arrives with a professional look.
  • Job Board Attachment – Many job boards, like JobMonkeyJobs, allow you to upload your resume or create your resume on the site. This is a good option because your resume is automatically sent.
  • By Hand – Applying for jobs in person is a great option. It allows recruiters to put a name to a face. Obviously if you are applying for a job this way, you’ll need a hard copy of your resume to pass along.

The general trend in all of these is that you will need either a digital or hard copy of your resume. Either way the only way you should print or send your resume is as a PDF file. There are exceptions to this rule, but not very often.

Have you ever received a file and when you open it up it appeared to be unorganized mess? That’s what often happens if you design a resume in one file type (.txt, .doc, .docx) and email it off to a recruiter that can’t open that file type. It happens for a variety of reasons – fonts, layouts, margins, programs, Mac vs PC, etc. It’s annoying when this happens and it looks unprofessional. To ensure that your resume arrives to the recruiter exactly as you designed it, you need to sent it as a PDF.

Learn more about PDF files here.

PDFs, or Portable Document Format, is a file format from Adobe that is an ideal way for you to send your resume. Chances are good that you’ve already come across a “.pdf” file. Maybe you know a bit about them? If not, you’ll want to send your resume as a PDF because PDFs are:

  • Universally Accepted File Formats
  • Easy To Read – PDFs can be opened and read on Macs and PCs
  • Maintain Your Customized Resume Design – PDFs ensure that all formatting (fonts, layouts, margins, etc.) remain intact
  • Virus Free – PDFs are one of the safest ways to send files
  • Secure – PDFs cannot be edited or plagiarized. You can’t copy and paste info from a PDF.
  • Free To Create – There are plenty of free PDF converters available online.

PDFs are the ultimate way to send your resume. You can create your resume in whatever program you like – Word, Text, or Illustrator. But be sure to print and send your resume as a PDF file. Creating a PDF is like taking a photo of your resume. Everyone can view it, but no one can copy it.

Do you need some resume design tips?

Download a PDF converter today and give it a try. When you create a PDF you won’t lose your original content. Do be careful about file names or you’ll end up with a lot of resume files on your computer!

Send your resume as a PDF file and you’ll guarantee that the recruiter will see your resume the way you intended it to be seen. That means you’ll be one step closer to landing a job.

About this Author 

Derek Lennon is a skier and writer who lives, works, and plays in the mountains. He travels the globe in search of snow and adventure. Life has allowed him to live and work all over the world doing cool jobs and loving every minute of it.

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