What would you say is the best font for a resume? I normally use Times New Roman but I have seen real good resumes in Calibri, and I was thinking about changing mine also. Which theme do you suggest I go with?
Content Editor Note: Below are five helpful posts on resume fonts, overall resume improvement, and also make sure to check out our Professional Resume Review Service
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- Great tips on overall improvement of your resume
- Good forum discussion on resume fonts
- forum discussion on resume font size
- Discussion on whether your resume and cover letter should have the same font
- "Take Your Resume to the Next Level"
Advice from one of our Professional Resume Reviewers:
Font selection certainly won't make or break your resume (unless you use something silly like Comic Sans), but a nice font can certainly help your resume look clean and professional.
First and foremost, you've got to make sure that your resume has a clean overall format with enough spacing between sections so the reviewer doesn't have to strain to read each line. Your resume should look like a professional document, not simply a piece of paper that has been stuffed with as much content as humanly possible. Form, in some sense, serves a true function here. Especially in the world of banking, where you'll be relentlessly pumping out highly word-smithed, highly formatted documents and PowerPoints.
Now, in terms of choosing your font, there is some level of leeway here. As I said earlier, unless you choose a silly font (i.e. Comic Sans), you'll never be dinged for font selection. However, if you choose a handsome font, you might get lucky and have a design-nerd reviewing your resume. Assuming everything else checks out in terms of your background, education, and experience, a nice font certainly can't hurt.
Personally, I use Book Antiqua. Its a clean font with understated serifs that's easy on the eyes. And, frankly, I haven't come across a ton of resumes that use it, so I feel it does add a bit of a personal touch.
Other fonts that work nicely include Helvetica (a personal fave, and a much more important font than most realize), Arial (Microsoft's Helvetica knockoff), Calibri, and Cambria. There's also nothing wrong with Times New Roman, in my opinion, though it's not a personal favorite of mine.
Lastly, regardless of which font you use, make sure you size it appropriately. The smallest font I use in the body of my resume is 9-point. I'd be hard-pressed to go smaller than that, and I only feel confident doing so because I've spaced each section appropriately without making the resume feel over-stuffed.
For any aspiring bankers who think they need some help with their resume, WSO's resume review service is pretty solid. It'll help you get your format down pat and work with you to ensure that your experience is presented in the strongest way possible (i.e. rewording of bullets, reworking of sections, etc.)
As an aside, for anyone that's interested in fonts and design in general, I recommend the movie "Helvetica" (http://www.helveticafilm.com/.) It's pretty interesting and definitely eye-opening.
I have three points (most of them are included above, but I'll be shorter):
- If you have any doubts, use Times New Roman everywhere
- If you feel going to the next level, use sans serif font for the headlines/titles (Arial, century gothic, verdana) and serif font for the text (times new roman, garamond...)
- You are probably worried about the wrong thing...I'll bet anything that anyone on the WSO Resume Review Team can take your resume and find 10 things that are more important to adjust than the font you are using
I've personally always been conservative and use 12pt Times New Roman or Arial, but I think also Sans Serif and Helvetica are pretty attractive fonts. Some suggest Garamond -- I've been told this is the "banker" font by some people -- but I think it's distractingly "too" professional looking for a resume. Hope that helps!