Graphic CVs: The Dos and Don’ts

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A CV with all the bells and whistles; fancy infographic-like resumes that are all the latest rage. Graphic CV’s are showing up much more frequently than ever before, because of the amount of encouragement to create them.

“It’s a way to show your personality!” they say, but as time goes by, people seem to focus more on the look over the actual content. Here are common elements of graphic CV’s which we see too often, that should be reconsidered when you’re in the process of writing a CV.

Disclaimer: If you’re applying for a job in graphic design, gaming, or anything which requires extensive knowledge of photoshop or visual graphics- by all means, go all out!

Getting Personal

One of us in our office is guilty of this (the writer). At the time, it felt very important to mention that I am an Aquarius, mountain lover, and hamburger connoisseur- but this isn’t a dating site profile- it’s the most important representation of your professionalism.

So “shark week fan,” “mix tape artists,” or “BMW enthusiast,” are all irrelevant for a role that doesn’t have anything with Marine Biology, Music, or the Automotive industries.

Try to mention hobbies that give you skills either for the role specifically or for you as a professional. For example: if you say you love artistic ice skating in the interview you could use it to say “I enjoy Ice skating as it taught me how to focus and perfect details.”

Pies, charts, and dots

Graphic CV
Photo by Lukas

Bars ranging from short to very long, and dots or stars filled to indicate rank. This is meant to bring a new dimension to a graphic CV, yet it lacks the feeling of legitimacy. What differentiates 4 stars coloured in from 3?

Instead of adding in these graphics which can be differently interpreted- state your grade, or proven level (such as A1 – C2 for languages).

Running out of ink

Most recruiters will print your CV, and won’t be happy to use their whole fuchsia and aqua ink cartilages on your graphic CV. In the end, they will most likely copy and paste the information to a plain old black/white word document.

Missing Information

With these icons and space that isn’t used efficiently, something that is normally missed are the bullet points or summary of responsibilities in previous functions.

Some people just put in a title with some icons describing what they did- which can be interpreted in several ways. This tip is the simplest: use your words, not emojis.

“Life isn’t about quotes about life”

Graphic CV
Photo by Dominika Roseclay

Not only should you avoid adding quotes on your infographic CV – you should avoid adding them to even a normal CV. “You miss 100% of the chances you don’t take,” Yikes! “Nothing is impossible, the word itself says ‘I’m possible!” seriously?

These and a handful of other quotes have become overused, and in the end, don’t make you unique… sorry. Once a CV came in with the quote, “I would rather be hated for who I am, than loved for what I’m not,” this instantly gave off a very negative impression.

Sure, pops of color, or a creative (but easy-to-follow) layout is a nice change on recruiters eyes. But in most cases, all of this… stuff… won’t make as big as an impact than you think.

Read other blogs related to the subject: How to take weight off your CV, How to take a perfect CV picture or learn the reasons why your CV may get rejected.

Abroad Experience International Recruitment wishes you the best of luck in your Cv enhancement adventure!

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Graphic cv


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