6 easy ways to make your resume mobile-friendly

As mobile phones become smarter, recruiters are also following suit. In the last three years, social media recruitment went from 52 percent to over 84 percent. Recruiters and Hiring Managers are extremely busy professionals and often use their cell phones to go through their emails (just like the rest of us). There’s nothing more frustrating for them than a resume that is not mobile-friendly.

Quick side note: Given the strong influence, smartphones have on everyday lives, it’s critical to keep them in mind when formatting your resume. If you’re struggling to decode the ideal resume format for you, you can use my two-page, annotated resume cheat sheet. Get your copy by submitting your information below:


Take Sue, for instance. She's a very busy recruiter working for a New York headhunting firm and takes the subway and a taxi to and from work. Which of the two following resumes do you think she will gravitate towards?

She won't be able to check this one properly until she can download a copy on a desktop version of Microsoft Word. Plus -- where's his number? It seems to be hidden by a light blue box.

So she closes it and quickly opens the next.

Richard's thankfully made her life easier by using a nearly plain-text resume format that shows up beautifully on her iPhone. She taps his number, her phone dials it, and she gets Richard on the phone to ask what his availabilities are this week.

She promptly forgets all about Dean and returns to her busy schedule.

In this short-attention-span age, the quicker you can make your point and inspire people to interview you, the better off you are.

Follow these simple tips to make sure your resume passes the "mobile-friendly" test:

  1. Use a simple format.

Resist the urge to go all out when formatting your resume. Use a clean font, size 10 or larger, so that the reader doesn't need to zoom in to see your resume. Use lots of white space, avoid tables, and use bulleted lists wherever possible.

  1. Think vertical.

Most people look at their mobile screen vertically and scroll down using just a single finger or thumb. Pack the top 1/3rd of your resume (the visual center) with the most important information about yourself -- your key skills, your biggest accomplishments, and the most important thing you can offer to an employer. The trick is to grab the readers' attention from the beginning, so even if they are in a hurry, they immediately see you as an asset and your resume sticks in their memory.

  1. Get to the point, fast.

Hiring Managers' prefer resumes that are just a couple of pages long and use short, simple bullets to explain what you did. That's why when you're sending in your executive resume, you need to make sure it's to the point and mobile-friendly.

  1. Use hyperlinks to save space.

Add hyperlinks to your email to make it easier for hiring managers to contact you while they're still on their phone. Include your personal portfolio, if applicable. Try to keep your contact info to a single line.

  1. Test, test, test!

Send your resume to several friends with different cell phones. At the very least, you want to check what your resume looks like on an iPhone, Blackberry, and Android phones. Save your resume in Word, not PDF, because if the recruiter wants to upload your resume to their candidate database, there’s a chance your Word file will perform better.

  1. Make it easy for them to understand what you do.

The purpose of a resume is to secure an interview. One of the mobile-friendly resume's best practices is to quickly make an impression is to include a headline right under your name, just like Richard did in his resume:

What would you like me to write about next? Let me know in the comments below.

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