Posted by Brian McCullough
Here’s a very basic resume writing question: What font should you use for your resume?
It’s not an insignificant issue.
First of all, you want your resume to be legible. And you want your resume to be legible (easily readable) not just for human eyes, but also for computer eyes… in case your resume might be scanned into a database. You want your resume to be legible if faxed, scanned, transmitted, emailed as a photo attachment, etc.
But secondly, and just as important, the font you chose can communicate a lot about your professionalism and intentions. If you’re an accountant, you want to stick with normal, conventional “professional” fonts. But if you’re a graphic designer, you want to and probably need to be a little more adventurous in your font choice.
So what are the fonts I would recommend using for most professions in most cases?
Your choices are basically between traditional serif fonts (Times New Roman) and sans serif fonts (Arial, Helvetica, etc). Here are the fonts I’d feel most comfortable using:
Times New Roman-
I’d say this is the safest bet for most people. It’s the most common professional font for a reason. It’s highly legible and professional looking. The downside: you risk looking just like everyone else.
Century Old Style-
A good font to use for very traditional or “stuffy” jobs.
Veranda and Arial are both excellent Helvetica substitutes. Highly legible and familiar to most people.
Another common and legible choice.
An excellent and very common font, but I find that it looks too much like an old type writer font (which it’s intended to do) and… this is just a personal preference… I feel like that makes a resume look a bit dated.
Here’s a list of fonts I found on a resume template website. This is a good list that I’d stick to pretty much exclusively.
In the end, resume font choice can be a personal decision. Go with what looks best and makes you feel the most confident and professional. But don’t go too far afield. Unusual or showy fonts can make your resume stand out in a bad way.