Infographic resumes are all the rage… but are they really right for you? In reality, having one could actually do you more harm than good.
Quirky, brightly colored infographics are growing in popularity among today’s job applicants. But chances are you probably should not use an infographic resume.
So if you’re considering paying a designer to make a flashy infographic resume for you, consider these two points first:
1. Statistically speaking, infographic resumes are not for you
Most careers are not creative. You may enjoy dressing your cat in a hat at home, but once you get to your cubicle, you’re all spreadsheets and invoices, and that’s just fine.
Creative industries comprise four percent of all businesses and two percent of all employees, according to Americans for the Arts. That means that only two percent of you could probably benefit from a funky infographic resume.
Some careers lend themselves quite naturally to infographic resumes, such as those in graphic design, art or even interior design. But for the rest of us, it makes more sense to stick to the tried-and-true print resume format. A subtle dash of color in section titles or a colored paper as background is about as artistic as most of us should get with our professional documents.
Consider not only your position but the company you’re applying to. Would hiring managers there really appreciate an infographic? Some design companies are surprisingly utilitarian in their operations, even if they’re cutting-edge in their designs.
Even if you’re submitting a creative resume for an appropriate industry like graphic design, consider including a standard formatted resume as well, because it might be more suited for official purposes like recordkeeping.
2. Do it well, or don’t do it at all
Don’t bother with an infographic resume unless you’re going to design it yourself. Using a software service or designer just won’t be worth the money or time.
Why? Because if you’re offering an infographic resume, it’s to display your talents as an artist, not your outsourcing abilities. By paying someone else or using software, you could look lazy.
Worse, you might even end up with a subpar final product. As they say, if you want it done right, do it yourself.
The big lesson
Don’t make an infographic resume just because you’ve heard it’s a popular trend. Remember, this is the document that’s supposed to sell you and your skills to a potential employer. The only time you should venture into infographic territory is when you’re 100 percent positive it will work to your advantage.
Have you ever tried an infographic resume? How did it work out?
Erik Bowitz is a professional resume consultant for Copy My Resume and is also a freeform career enthusiast. He eats, sleeps and breathes resumes and particularly enjoys looking at the world of employment from unique and unexplored perspectives.