How To Format Your Name And Contact Information

How are you going to format your name and your contact details on your resume?

It’s an important decision — after all, this is probably one of the first things that your reader will see when they pick up your document.

The way you choose to format these details immediately sets a tone and a style for your resume as a whole. So it’s important that their appearance is consistent with the image you wish to project in your industry. What style is likely to appeal to a recruiter in your field?

Some basic formatting principles

It doesn’t matter what profession you’re in — your name and contact information need to be immediately accessible. That means:

  • it should occupy the very top of the page (don’t forget to include your name at the top of subsequent pages, if you use them.) Don’t bother to head your resume with the word ‘Resume’!
  • it should be legible: try making your name larger than the rest of the text on the page to make it stand out
  • it should be styled appropriately. Font styles are a matter of personal taste. That not only means that it’s up to you what fonts you use — but also that an unusual choice may not appeal to your reader! So err on the side of caution, and if in doubt, try formatting your resume with a standard serif font such as Times New Roman or, if you prefer, a sans-serif font like Arial or Helvetica.

Some examples

Which ones appeal to you? Which have the greatest impact and clarity for your needs?

Arial:

Times New Roman:

Garamond:

Georgia:

Brush Script MT:

Lucida Calligraphy:

Edwardian Script ITC:

Format your contact information

You can get some simple but stylish ideas about how to lay out your contact information by checking out sample resumes. Just remember that you want the details to be quickly found and easily read.

These days, email has become a standard way of contacting someone quickly. So it may well be that a recruiter, headhunter or employer will send an email as a preliminary contact. They may also call you by phone.

So make absolutely sure that you include these details on your resume. Some suggestions:

  • choose an email address that suits a professional image. Something like sexylegs1234 at xyz.com is probably best left for private use!
  • avoid using an existing work email address that may be monitored
  • give a private phone number with a voicemail that you can check frequently
  • do include your mailing address — but consider that a recruiter may not use mail as a primary means of contact.

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