Resume Templates: To Use or Not To Use?
All of us faced the challenge of writing a resume. For those who never approached developing own resume, this challenge will inevitably meet you along the way. The problem with resume writing is that most people have no idea where to start and how to develop a document that would make one a more marketable candidate. Those who don’t retreat to the online companies that basically take care of the whole thing usually try to find resources that can help them understand how their resume should look like. Obviously, many people do have some knowledge about writing a resume but even so they try to find additional information that could help them understand the process better. And the first question that comes to the minds of job seekers is usually can I use a template? It does sound good to have a template to follow, doesn’t it? You just need to insert the information about yourself and it seems like you are ready to go. However, not everything is as good as it sounds. Read more to understand how templates can help or ruin the whole thing…
There are many discussions going on today as one group of experts believe that using a resume template can do more harm than good while another side of specialists believe that totally opposite is the truth. We are not going to analyze all of the evidence and arguments present in this discussion simply because that was never our intention when writing this article. More than that, we believe that both sides have valid points and the truth is somewhere in the middle. Those who claim that using resume templates can result in a job search disaster – such outcomes certainly take place in the jobs market. But to balance it off, we should say that there are those who have successfully got the job with a resume that was written following a template.
The first danger when using a template is that your resume will look the same as everyone else’s. The truth of the matter is that HR managers have a good eye for identifying resume templates. Very often is sends the signal that you were lazy to come up with something of your own. Employers might think that you always look for quick ways of solving problems – that is certainly a risk you have to be aware of. But that is not the only problem. There are a lot of resume templates that do not comply with quality standards. And although all websites will claim that those templates have been developed by true professionals, there is no way to check it. So you risk to follow a sub standard patterns in a template which will unlikely result in a good job search outcome. There are some who believe you are selling yourself short if you take the shortcut of following a resume template which also may be true in some cases.
However, we believe that using a template can be a quite beneficial thing despite all of the dangers listed above. If you approach a template with the right attitude then you can actually make use of it and develop a great resume for yourself. Use it as a guideline, not a rule (which means you can change the formatting to match your needs better). Don’t be afraid to go off the beaten path offered in a template to make it more individual. Besides, you can check multiple resume templates just to generate some ideas about what structure this document may have. And finally, keep in mind that the content is what matters the most on every CV or resume. If you manage to use a template to highlight your most prominent skills (relevant to the job requirements) then no one will really care how you did it. HRs are paid to analyze the content of the resumes after all.