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Infographic Resumes: When Should They Be Used?

Resumes are an opportunity to set yourself apart and showcase what makes you shine as a professional, as well as emphasize your experience and expertise. Not all resumes are going to be formatted traditionally, and one example of an outside-the-box resume is an infographic.

So when is an infographic resume the right option?

What Is an Infographic?

Broadly, infographics are a way to represent data, information, and knowledge visually. They’re beneficial because they allow for the delivery of potentially complex or detailed information clearly and quickly.

An infographic will usually integrate a combination of visual elements, including charts, icons, graphs, and images. Along with the imagery is concise text meant to convey information in a digestible, understandable, and engaging format.

Infographics are used in many industries and fields, including marketing, business, education, and journalism. They’re also popular in the digital media era we’re currently in because they’re a concise way to capture the attention of an audience.

What About an Infographic Resume?

Similarly, an infographic resume takes information from someone’s professional background, skills, and qualifications. Rather than being entirely text-based, it uses visual elements to show this information in a more engaging, appealing way.

Infographic resumes are meant to strike a delicate balance between creativity and readability, with a major objective being that the design enhances rather than detracts from the content.

There are some industries and employers who appreciate the creativity of an infographic resume, but they aren’t going to work in all industries or for every position. Some employers are going to expect a more traditionally formatted resume.

When deciding which type of resume is correct for your industry and the position you’re applying for, you need to consider the preferences and expectations of the targeted audience.

What Are the Pros and Cons of a Resume in an Infographic Format?

The pros of having an infographic resume include:

  • Visual appeal integrates colors, design elements, and icons that attract the attention of the reader, making them stand out from other text-based resumes.

  • They showcase your creativity and are a more personalized, unique representation of your professional journey.

  • You can easily emphasize key points, skills, achievements, and qualifications so important information can be gleaned quickly.

  • Since infographics are visual, they’re memorable and leave a more lasting impression.

  • If you want to develop an online presence as part of your career or job search, an infographic resume is excellent for a personal website or a social or online portfolio.  

Of course, there are some downsides of this non-traditional approach to a resume as well, including:

  • Some applicant tracking systems (ATS) that companies use may have difficulty parsing information from an infographic resume. This format may be incompatible with the system used by the employer.

  • In some industries or roles, there’s an expectation of a traditional resume. An unconventional approach to your resume may be frowned upon or misunderstood.

  • If your infographic resume isn’t well-designed, it can be cluttered, making it hard to read. You need to find a sense of balance between clarity and creativity with this approach.

  • An infographic resume may not translate well to being printed, and it could lose its visual impact when it’s not viewed on a screen. 

  • There’s a risk of overdoing it if you’re not experienced with graphic design, particularly infographic resumes. For example, you could include irrelevant or excessive design elements.

  • An infographic resume will emphasize brevity, which can limit the details included compared to a traditional resume.

When Is an Infographic Resume a Good Option?

If you’re considering this resume format, you want to think about:

·         The industry

·         The role

·         The company culture

You might opt for a traditional and infographic version of your resume so you’re ready to tailor it to the expectations or context of a potential employer.

Scenarios where you could consider using this format include:

  • When applying for a position in a creative field such as advertising, marketing, or design. In these scenarios, the use of an infographic can showcase your design skills and creativity, which are critical to positions in these fields.

  • If you are applying for a job that requires solid visual communication skills, why not show rather than tell?

  • Positions that value technology and innovation could be ideally suited to the use of an infographic resume.

  • Industries like IT and software development tend to look for creative thinkers who look at situations from a different perspective. Plus, it’s a simplified way to showcase technical proficiency and skills.

  • If you have an online portfolio or a personal website, complement them with an infographic resume, which can make your application more engaging and interactive.

  • Before you attend a career fair or networking event, consider creating an infographic resume because they’re easy to leave behind and they grab attention amongst a sea of other candidates.

  • You don’t necessarily have to use an infographic resume as a replacement for a traditional one. You can also use it as a supplement. You can more dynamically represent your traditional resume.

What’s Included In an Infographic Resume?

The key elements that you should include in an infographic resume really aren’t any different than a traditional resume—they’re just presented differently.

You’ll include things like an introduction section that briefly sums up your career objectives and key strengths. You can use icons or other visual elements to highlight your skills, and you can create a timeline of your work history.

Other things you’ll include, when relevant, are your educational background, achievements, certifications, and trainings, and any languages you’re proficient in.

You can include links or QR codes to your online portfolio or work samples as well.

Final Takeaways

Resumes need to stand out, but they should often do so within a split second.

Hiring managers are sifting through so many of them that, in some cases, an infographic resume can give you that standout introduction that you need. Of course, they’re not always the right fit for every position, employer, or industry.

If you’re unsure of the style of resume that’s right for you, or you need help designing an infographic resume that concisely conveys who you are and what you bring to the table, a resume writing service can be helpful. Expert Resume Pros creates infographic resumes, as well as traditional resumes, federal resumes, and LinkedIn profiles. Contact our team to learn more.

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