The Best Applications for Creating your Killer Resume
Creating your killer resume that would get you the job, requires not only good resume writing skills but also an application (software) for creating awesome resume formatting and resume design. The market offers many different paid and free options to choose from.
You don’t need the most expensive designing program to create a killer resume that would get the attention of a hiring person. Simpler software with fewer functions can help you create an outstanding resume if it is used right and with all beneficial features. People tend to get hooked on the fancy functions, but they are useful if you don’t use them.
What are the best applications for creating your killer resume?
1. Microsoft Office – Microsoft Word
Microsoft Office is one of the most used office software used in the world. The first version was accounting in 1988 and the software is developed by Microsoft. Most used applications of this office package are Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook. All programs run on PCs with Windows and macOS operating systems. You can download the free trial here. There is also an option to use the office package as an online platform.
Microsoft Word is dedicated to a word processor. The program is used to create documents such as letters, posters, books and also winning killer resumes. MS Word offers many options for layouts, bullets, numbering, fonts, WordArt, text boxes, images etc. that can help with your resume design.
Some might say that Microsoft Word is not an advanced word processor. Every program has advantages and disadvantages, however, I strongly believe that you can create a job-winning resume in this program as well. It’s easy to use and most people worked with this program in their life.
Many job websites, companies and recruiters still required to submit your resume in .doc or .docx for their own reasons. It might because they use Applicant Tracking System (check more in this post and part 1. Software compatibility) or their computer system is built only for these formats. Before you start working your killer resume, it might be beneficial to check what file format you need to use or alternatively choose two resume designs. One with simplistic formatting and another one with more graphics included.
2. Pages for Mac
Pages is a word processor created and developed by Apple. It is designed for macOS and iOS operating systems, basically for all MacBooks and iPhones. You install Pages via Apple Store and also access an online version via iCloud. This software is designed to be easy to use program allowing anybody quickly and to easily create any documents.
Killer resumes and resume design are also easily done in Pages. I personally find it similar to Microsoft Word, so if you know this application, you will find Pages very easy to use. Pages are more intuitive and straightforward for formatting documents and resume writing. You can also use some pre-designed resume templates, CVs, letters and outlines. Your killer resume can be exported as a pdf file, converted to Microsoft Word or Plain Text. I have never seen a job application form where you could submit a resume in .pages format. Be careful with exporting to Microsoft Word as your resume design might be changed and your resume would not look so attractive. If possible, export and submit your resume as a pdf to keep the resume design and formatting untouched.
3. Google Docs
Google Docs is a free service from Google. It’s all free and you only need a Gmail account. You can sign up for free here. Google Docs offers very easy editing and styling tools to format text and paragraphs swiftly. You can choose from hundreds of fonts, include images and drawings. This service also comes with pre-made documents and templates that are easy to use and edit according to your wishes.
Google Docs in general work on all browsers, however, the best way is to Google Chrome as it the same product created by Google. You don’t need to save the changes while working on your killer resume and resume design. It is necessary to be connected to the internet as the files are saved online. There is an option to work offline with Google Docs, but I never used it and most people are connected to the internet while writing their job-winning resume.
Your killer resume and beautiful resume design can be shared as Google Docs with other Google users, but also saved in different formats like a PDF document .pdf, Microsoft Word .docx, Rich Text Format .rtf, Plain Text .txt, OpenDocument Format .odt. You can also print out your resume directly or just email it as an attachment.
Google offers additional services along with Google Docs – Google Sheets and Google Slides. It would be possible to create resumes also in these, however, I personally never tried and have no intention to do so. Google Docs is built and design to help with creating documents, so it’s the best choice to go for from Google services.
4. Adobe Package
One of the leading graphic design software was created by Adobe Systems Incorporated – commonly known as Adobe. Additional software developed by this company is used for web design, video editing and visual effects, audio editing, eLearning and many more. Adobe graphic design software is considered one of the best on the market, though some people might say that the price reflects the quality. To create a killer resume that is like infographics or more artistic you can use Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Indesign. You can download the programs as trials Adobe Photoshop Trial and Adobe Indesign Trial.
Adobe Photoshop is a raster graphics editor and it can be used to create very creative resumes and “info resumes”. Adobe InDesign is used for creating posters, flyers, brochures, magazines, books etc. This program can be utilised for a great resume design and layout. Graphic elements can be inserted as well.
These two programs are fairly easy to use and offer many functions for designing a resume. However, both are also complex programs and the complexity requires time to learn. If you never worked with these programs and don’t have extra time and willingness to learn them, choose a different word processor. Sometimes the fanciest software might not the best for your situation.
Apache OpenOffice (that is the official name, but OpenOffice is mostly used by users) is one of the most known and used open-source software. The software suite includes programs for word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, graphics, databases. The suit is available in many languages, working on standard computers and it also allows to open and edit documents from other office applications. You can download it and use it for free here.
To write a killer resume and work on your resume design use OpenOffice Writer. This is a word processor similar to Microsoft Word and Pages. It provides all necessary word processor features for creating a good layout and design. Your resume can be saved as OpenOffice file .odt, a PDF file or .docx and .doc for Microsoft Word.
LaTeX is considered as a standard communication and for publishing scientific documents. This application is also recognised for high-quality typesetting encouraging authors to focus on the right content and not the appearance. LaTeX can be also used to create a compelling killer resume. The application is available free here. The files can be shared as .tex LaTeX documents, a PDF file or Rich Text Format .rtf.
In my opinion, if you don’t know LaTeX, I wouldn’t spend time on learning this program. You can better use some other text processor and use the time on resume writing and resume design.
7. Resume Website Builders and Makers
Another alternative to a program for resume writing is to use a resume website builders. You enter the required information to the website form and a resume will be generated according to your chosen resume style and resume design.
This can be a good choice for someone who doesn’t have any text editing software on their computer and wants something fairly easy.
However, check the conditions and pricing. Usually, to make the resume website builder worthy and get some extra killer resume designs, you need to pay some extra money. If the service is subscription based (paid monthly or annually) after your payment expires you will lose access to all your data and resumes. This might be fine for one-time resume writing. If you want to keep your resume updated or plan to change jobs soon, I would personally go for services and resume templates that can be saved on your computer. Once you download them to your hard drive, you can use them as much as you want without extra payments.
Selecting a program that you can use for writing your killer resume is a starting point and can determine the success or failure of your job applications. You can choose from paid or free software like Microsoft Word, Pages for Mac, Google Docs, Adobe programs, OpenOffice, LaTeX or Resume Website Builders and Makers.
It’s not always necessary to use the fanciest software to produce an attractive killer resume. Always consider your situation along with the skills and knowledge you have with each application and pick the most beneficial one. You can also use different resume templates (Check out some resume templates here) to save yourself the software hustle, but these templates are already designed for a specific program.
Do you use any other programs or website for creating your killer resume? Share with us in the comment section.
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