When it comes to crafting a winning resume, there are a lot of factors to consider. From the wording and formatting to the layout and overall design, every element plays a role in making a positive impression on potential employers.
One often-overlooked aspect of resume creation is the font choice. Believe it or not, the font you use can have a big impact on the overall effectiveness of your resume. Recruiters are likely quickly skimming resumes to find a qualified candidate, so yours needs to stand out. Not only does the font affect readability, but it also conveys a certain level of professionalism and personality.
In this article, we'll explore some of the top resume fonts available, providing you with the knowledge and tools you need to make an informed decision when crafting your own resume. So, let's dive in and discover the best resume fonts (and font sizes) to help you land your dream job!
Resume fonts matter because they can influence the reader's perception of the job seeker and their qualifications for the position. The font used on a resume can affect the readability, professionalism, and overall aesthetic of the document.
Different fonts have different connotations and associations. They function like different personalities or tones of voice. When you enter a crowded room, there's always a mix of voices: loud, bold, quiet, reserved, mellow, energized, authoritative, and friendly. Your unique communication style is part of what makes you an asset, and the font you choose can showcase that.
By selecting a font that is easy to read, professional, and appropriate for the position, job seekers can create a resume that is visually appealing and effectively communicates their qualifications and experience to recruiters and hiring managers.
There are a few things you should keep in mind when choosing the best resume font:
Different industries have different expectations when it comes to the best font for resume documents, and selecting one font that is appropriate for the industry can help you create a resume that stands out to potential employers.
For example, if you're applying to a creative or design-focused industry, you may want to consider a more visually striking font to showcase your creativity and design skills. In contrast, if you're applying to a more traditional or conservative industry, such as finance or law, you may want to choose a more formal and traditional font to convey a sense of professionalism and attention to detail.
Different job roles have different expectations for resumes, including the font used.
The level of the position you're applying for may influence the font you choose. For entry-level positions, a simpler and more basic font may be appropriate. However, for more senior or executive-level positions, a more sophisticated and professional font may be expected.
The font you choose may also depend on the company culture of the organization you're applying to. For example, if you're applying to a startup with a more informal culture, you may be able to use a more modern and trendy font. Conversely, if you're applying to a more conservative company, you may want to stick to a more traditional font.
It's important to be consistent with your font choice throughout your entire resume, and avoid using two fonts, to maintain a professional and cohesive look.
Your personal brand is the unique combination of skills, experiences, and qualities that make you stand out to employers. The font you choose for your resume can help reinforce your personal brand and make a positive impression on potential employers.
For example, if your personal brand is creative and visually oriented, you may want to choose a font that reflects that. On the other hand, if your personal brand is more focused on professionalism and attention to detail, you may want to choose a more traditional font that conveys those qualities.
It's important to choose a font that is consistent with your personal brand and the image you want to project to potential employers. However, it's also important to keep in mind that the font should still be easy to read and not too distracting, as the content of your resume is ultimately what matters most throughout your job search.
Serif and sans-serif are two main categories of fonts. Serif typefaces have small lines or flourishes at the ends of the strokes that make up the letters and convey a more traditional tone. On the other hand, sans-serif fonts do not have these small lines or flourishes at the ends of the strokes and can convey a more modern and approachable tone.
Times New Roman is a classic serif font that is often used for resumes because of its traditional and professional look. It's a standard font that is easy to read both on paper and on screens, which makes it a safe choice for resumes.
Pros: Times New Roman is a common font that is easily readable, familiar to many readers, and a relatively compact font, which allows you to fit more information onto a page without sacrificing readability.
Cons: Because it's a common font, using it can make your resume look generic or uninspired. It's not the most visually appealing font, and it doesn't have the modern or stylish look that other fonts can offer, which may make your resume less visually impressive.
Arial is a sans-serif font that is commonly used for resumes because of its clean and modern appearance. It is a commonly used font that is familiar to many readers, which can make your resume easy to read and accessible to a wide audience.
Pros: Arial is a very legible, modern, and professional font, which makes it a great choice for resumes. It has a clean and simple design that is easy on the eyes, which can help recruiters quickly scan your resume and find the information they're looking for. Arial is a widely available font that is included on most computers and devices.
Cons: While Arial is a clean and modern font, it doesn't have the unique or distinctive look that some other fonts can offer, which may make your resume less visually impressive.
Calibri is another sans-serif font that is commonly used for resumes because of its clean and modern appearance. It is a popular choice for resumes because it has a contemporary look that is appealing to many employers.
Pros: Calibri was designed specifically for on-screen reading, which means it is highly legible even at smaller sizes. Calibri is a font that is included with most modern computers and devices, which means that it will display consistently across different platforms.
Cons: Because Calibri is a commonly used font, it may not help your resume stand out from other applicants who are also using it.
Just like using color on your resume, the best fonts for resume can depend on your industry, the role you're applying for, and your personality, too. In a traditional field, you'll likely want to stick with more traditional, professional, and classic fonts.
On the other hand, in creative fields like graphic design, you have a bit more flexibility to play around and find a font to showcase your personality.
Traditional and commonly used resume fonts include:
These fonts are available on Google Docs and included in Microsoft Word, too. It's worth noting that there is no definitive list of the most traditional resume fonts, as opinions on what constitutes a "traditional" resume font can vary depending on a number of factors. Ultimately, the font you choose for your resume should be legible, professional, and easy to read.
Applying for a graphic design, marketing, or other creative role? Don't be afraid to get experimental with the fonts on your resume. Here are some of the best nontraditional fonts to try!
Some of these fonts are free on platforms like Google and Canva. If you're willing to pay for a more creative option, head to Creative Market to snag the perfect resume font for your industry, role, and personality.
Comic Sans has been a huge source for memes over the last few years, and it's not the font you want to add to your resume to spice things up. It's one of the only fonts that's immediately seen as a joke. So unless you're really playing up humor in a specific role, avoid this one!
Don't include cursive fonts or script fonts on your resume either. These are often hard to read, especially on computer screens.
Other things to avoid:
Honestly? The font you use matters less than the sizing and formatting of your resume text.
One of the quickest ways to have your resume moved to the “Trash” folder in a recruiter or HR manager's inbox is having it absolutely crammed with tiny, hard-to-read text.
Leave white space to give the eyes a break (a natural pause-point) and keep your text skim-able by making sure it's big enough, but not overwhelming.
So, what resume font size should you use to stand out to a potential employer? Keep these quick rules-of-thumb on hand and adjust according to your specific needs:
With many companies relying on applicant tracking systems to screen resumes, failing to optimize your resume for ATS can result in your application being discarded before it's even seen by a human recruiter. By ensuring that your resume follows ATS formatting guidelines, you can increase your chances of getting past the initial screening process and landing an interview.
So, it's important to take the time to optimize your resume for ATS while still making sure it's easy to read and visually appealing for human recruiters. Consider the following when tailoring your resume:
Using a template when crafting a resume can be highly beneficial for several reasons. Firstly, a template provides a clear and consistent structure for your resume, ensuring that all necessary sections are included and that the information is presented in a logical and clear way.
Secondly, a template can save you time and effort when creating a resume. Rather than starting from scratch and designing the layout and resume format yourself, a template provides pre-designed sections and formatting. This means you can focus on customizing the content to fit your specific needs, without having to worry about the overall structure and design.
Teal's Resume Builder gives you the option to choose from these four standard fonts: Times New Roman, Roboto, Poppins, and Helvetica, as well as choose a professional template.
Spacing is a crucial element to consider when crafting a resume ,as it can significantly impact the document's readability and overall presentation. Proper spacing can help to highlight key sections, and adequate spacing can also help to balance the use of text and white space, ensuring that the document does not appear cluttered or overwhelming.
Proper spacing can enhance the overall visual appeal of a resume and improve the chances of grabbing the attention of potential employers.
While it's important to have a visually appealing resume, the use of colors should be approached with caution.
When used correctly, colors can enhance the overall design and highlight important information on the resume. It may be tempting to use colors to make your resume stand out, but it's generally best to avoid using them, as it can distract from the content and convey an unprofessional image.
Margins play a crucial role in the overall layout and readability of a resume. Adequate margins help to create a balanced and visually appealing document that is easy to read and navigate. Proper margins can also help to emphasize key information and ensure that the document does not appear cluttered or overwhelming.
It's important to use consistent margins throughout the resume to create a professional and polished look. A margin of one inch is recommended to allow for adequate white space and avoid text crowding.
The font you choose is only one small component of your overall resume. How else can you create and optimize your resume to wow potential employers?
Teal's Resume Builder is an excellent option to consider to create a polished and professional-looking resume. The tool allows you to add all of your experience to be saved in your career history once, by either uploading an existing resume or importing your LinkedIn profile, then select from those experiences for tailored resumes in a snap.
Teal's Resume Builder guides you through the process, ensuring that you include all of the essential sections and information. The tool paired with AI functionality allows you to generate multiple versions of your professional summary and impactful, metric-driven achievements.
Additionally, Teal's Resume Builder offers helpful tips and suggestions to help you craft a compelling resume that showcases your skills and experience. It is a fantastic tool for anyone looking to create a standout resume quickly and easily.
As you work on crafting each section for your resume, it may be helpful to reference other successful resume examples that have landed interviews for candidates in similar career situations. Ultimately, you want your resume to tell your own unique story, but often times, other samples can inspire new ideas, new ways of presenting your information to employers.
We've compiled sample resumes for hundreds of positions, here are just a handful:
It's all too easy to feel paralyzed by overthinking small details, like the best font for resumes. But job searching is stressful enough — Teal's Resume Builder takes some of the stress off your shoulders. It comes with several professional templates, designed with the ATS in mind for maximum readability and impact.
You can also export your resume directly as a PDF and get it into the hands of a potential employer.