I’ve seen posts around the Internet lately on the importance of having a resume that stands out and catches the reader’s eye (did you know employers only look at your resume for an average of six seconds? SIX).
I looked at some resume templates on Etsy, and I really loved the ones that came with matching cover letters and thank you notes — but I really didn’t want to shell out $25-$35 for them. I decided to try making my own before purchasing anything, and since I don’t have Photoshop and all the Word templates are kinda boring, I took my very amateur design skills to PicMonkey.
I’ve used PicMonkey before for my blog header and photo editing, but I wasn’t sure how it would work with something like a resume that involves so much more text. I was surprised with how much I liked how it turned out, though, and decided to share how I did it here — especially since Googling for tips turned up nada.
I started off by choosing the design option and picking the 8×10 so it would fit on a normal piece of computer paper.
You could really design this anyway you wanted to, but I modeled mine after I few I saw on Pinterest and Etsy. I decided I wanted a circle with my initials and my name — nothing too crazy.
I started off with the circle by going to overlays (the butterfly icon on the right) and picking it from the geometric category.
I also played around with using a banner, but ultimately decided against it. If you decided you’d like a banner, just continue scrolling down to that option in the overlay category.
I then picked out a color I liked for my circle using the overlay pop-up box you see in the screenshot above. I wanted to add my initials to the circle, so my next step was adding a text box by clicking the text option on the left right above the butterfly.
I added a text box, manipulated its size to fit my circle, picked out a font I liked, and wrote my initials. I also changed the color of the text to white and made the font size bigger using the pop-up box you see below:
So far, so good! I then added my name by adding another text box and using the same font, Channel:
My next step was adding contact information below my name, so I added a smaller text box under my name and switched the font to Georgia so it’d be easier to read. I simply wrote my phone number, email, and address leaving about five to six spaces in between each.
I wanted to incorporate my blue circle in this text box, so I went back to the overlay option and added another circle. I then made it much smaller. To match the exact blue color, I clicked the large circle and copied the color code in the pop-up box. The code is the 667bff.
I then went back to my small circle and pasted the color code in the smaller circle’s overlay popup box. This may seem like a confusing process, but after you do it once, it will be easy peasy.
I then placed the circle in between my phone number and email to break the two up. To create an identical little blue circle, all you have to do is right-click on the circle and choose “duplicate overlay.”
I took my clone circle and put it in between the email and address. Wahoo! My header is done:
I then moved on to the bulk of my resume. What you do first and how you format it is up to you, and there are a ton of options. I first added a big text box for all my content. While I was working on this content, I zoomed in by changing the percentage on the bottom right corner of the site.
I started off with my school information, and matched the color of “Education” using the same technique above and used my Channel cursive font.
Under education, I indented by clicking the space button eight times. There isn’t any “tab option” for text in PicMonkey, so if you want to indent anything, you have to count the spaces you use — which was a pain but worked out. I then clicked option and 8 at the same time to add bullets with my GPA and honors information (which I used a plain, black font for — the same one as my contact info).
I repeated the same method for my employment history — matching the color of “Employment” in the cursive font, reverting to black Georgia for my content, and using bullets to add in my duties at the various positions.
I then did the same thing for Athletics and Community Service information. Here is the result (with some personal info whited out):
I saved the image to my desktop when I was done, but kept the page open online (be careful, if you leave without saving it to your computer, it will be gone). And double check everything — PicMonkey doesn’t have spell check.
*Sidenote: I also went back and changed all the cursive fonts to Georgia, and saved a version like that, too. I was a little on the fence about the cursive look, but having both of them will allow me to decide based on the job opportunity.
I still wanted my resume in Word and not just an image, but again, this is all personal preference. To make the PicMonkey resume take up the whole page in Word, I altered all of the margins (left, right, top, and bottom) to 0 instead of 1 by clicking on Format and then Document in the drop-down menu.
I then inserted the resume by clicking Insert, Picture, and from a file. I chose the PicMonkey resume image from my desktop, and voila! You will now be able to save and send this as a printable Word document. Here’s a before and after image of my resume:
I still wanted to save the top of my resume for a cover letter or thank you note, so I went back to PicMonkey and using the cropping tool to capture only my name and contact information. I saved the cropped picture, inserted it into Word in the same way. I then just used Word to write my cover letter right below the image.
The whole project took me a couple of hours, but I played around with colors, fonts, banners, and overlays for a while before picking what I liked best.
Whatcha think? Is the cursive font too much?