What Should A Resume Look Like In Australia? (Guide For 2022)

Help your resume avoid the rubbish bin.

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what should a resume look like
Irene McConnell
3 min read

June 26, 2020

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A quick web image search for the word “resume” reveals ample resume examples that are based on a ubiquitous design language, which has not seen much evolution since the 1990s. What should a resume look like? Well, apparently like this:

how should a resume look

Is this, however, what a modern Australian resume should look?

Hell no.

You don’t need to be a professional designer to notice glaring problems with this resume’s ability to get its message across:

  • Excess of text on the page.
  • Insufficient white space.
  • No sense of priority and logic.

A resume like this looks intimidating, too long, and overwhelms the reader with its information, all at once.

Important!

Some Australian resume writers believe that this archaic resume design reduces the risk of rejection by Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS). I debunk this myth in this article.

Your Australian Resume Should Not Look Like It Belongs In The 1990s.

The traditional resume design harks back to an era when the abundance of text on a page was considered to be a feature, not a flaw.

In the 1990s, people weren’t drowning in information as they are now. Consequently, they had the patience for cumbersome, intimidating, overloaded-with-text resumes.

All user interfaces, including those on the Internet, followed that trend.

how a resume should look

The concept of UX/UI (User Experience/User Interface) design wasn’t yet born, so as users, we didn’t know that we could expect a high level of usability from our interfaces.

We simply accepted that documents and computer applications were clunky.

(Related: What’s The Correct Font Size For An Australian Resume?)

What A Modern Australian Resume Should Look Like.

Your resume needs to conform to contemporary Web design rules. It has to flow. Like this:

what should resume look like

Much like a well-optimised web page, it has to clearly communicate the priority of detail through smart, effective design.

Most importantly, it has to pull a reader in – one bit of information at a time.

(Related: 45 Resume Writing Tips To Get You Hired).

Why You Need To Make Your Resume Look Good.

Odds are, the recruiter who receives your resume will be a digital native, in their late 20s or mid-30s.

It means that they’ll be a time-pressed Australian millennial who has never seen a 1990s version of the Internet, but has spent the last 10 years of their life skimming through web content at warp speed. They’ll be used to interfaces being intuitive and easy to internalise.

It’s also likely that the first time they’ll see your resume will be on their mobile device, while they’re rushing to/from work or waiting for a client.

If your resume looks dated, clunky or simply like “hard work”, they’ll be more likely to reject it. It’s friction they don’t need.

(By the way, did you know that you can have a great-looking resume by hiring us to revamp it for you?)

A Great-Looking Resume Is Just The Beginning.

An effective design simply gets you in the door; it takes away one of the key reasons why Australian recruiters stop reading your resume.

Your next challenge is to include all of the essential elements on your resume, while removing any that may distract the recruiter.

I wish you all the best in your upcoming job search.

– Irene

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