Your resume is a marketing tool to showcase your professional experience. But are you doing enough? Why not give your prospective employer a glimpse of your personality? Leave a lasting first impression, even before you arrive for your interview, through your resume. A great way to let yourself peek through your resume is your choice of font.
Fonts are broadly classified into 4 groups:
Serif Type Styles
Sans Serif Type Styles
Script Type Styles
While Script Type and Decorative font styles should be avoided at all costs, here are 4 font styles from each of the remainder categories to choose from.
Serif Type Style
Serifs are the small lines tailing from the edges of letters and symbols.
A simple and elegant font, it is said to convey "a sense of fluidity and delicacy". A great alternative to the Times New Roman, the modern version has the benefit of giving your resume a classic, polished look that’s much more interesting. As a bonus, if you’re struggling to condense your resume to one to two pages (which is a good idea), Garamond can help you fit more text on a page without sacrificing readability by lowering the font size or crowding your design by tightening up the spacing.
Cambria, a serif font, is part of a suite of typefaces called the ClearType Font Collection. It is designed specifically to perform well on computer monitors, while still remaining applicable for print. This makes Cambria a good choice for both online and printed resumes.
Constantia’s rounder letterforms make it look more friendly and less stuffy than many serif typefaces. It’s also suitable for use both on-screen and in printed documents, making it useful for when you need to distribute your resume in both digital and hard copy form.
Bodoni is a distinctive serif font with an upscale look. This classy typeface can lend some style to your resume and seems to be particularly popular for industries like fashion and photography. However, its delicate serifs display most clearly at larger sizes, so you’ll do best saving Bodoni for headings rather than body copy.
Sans Serif Type Style
Sans serifs are the typeface that do not have the small projections called "serifs" at the end of their strokes
Although it has been the default Microsoft Word font since 2007, Calibri is still not used as often as Arial. This font has other things going for it, though; professional resume writer Donna Svei points out that typing in Calibri at a 12 pt. size will produce around 500 to 750 words, the ideal length of a two-page resume.
This simple, sophisticated sans-serif typeface, will give your resume a look that is both classic and modern. You might also notice that Gill Sans is very similar to the custom lettering featured on the famous, WWII-era “Keep Calm and Carry On” poster. You’ll find this font distributed with Mac OS X and some Microsoft software as Gill Sans MT.
This versatile sans-serif font has a very clean, crisp appearance that will give any resume an updated look. It has multiple variants that you can use to differentiate the various sections and features of your resume, but you should probably avoid the “typewriter” and “unicode” variants — they can be hard to read.
The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog
This Swiss sans-serif typeface is considered by many designers and typographers to be the king of fonts. It even has its own self-titled documentary film. Thanks to its modern, clean lines and exceptional clarity, Helvetica is widely used in everything from major corporate logos to New York City’s subway signs. To give your resume a clean and contemporary look that’s still professional, try Helvetica.