In the past few days you it seems can’t go anywhere without hearing how “Times New Roman is the worst font for résumés” or how it’s akin to “wearing sweatpants to an interview.”
I’m here today to say that is just plain WRONG.
The trouble all started when Bloomberg posted a piece asking typography experts about the best and worst fonts to use on résumés. And this is what the search results have looked like ever since…
But why should we care about their opinion? It’s not as if your résumé is going to be judged by a group of typography experts, it’ll be read by a hiring manager!
In fact, your average hiring manager, like most people, probably couldn’t tell you the difference between Comic Sans and Marker Felt or Helvetica and Arial, whereas the average “typography expert” would laugh at you for such grievous sins against fonts.
So, why are we trying to impress typography experts with our résumés?
It goes to a very basic human desire: to cover up our flaws and insecurities.
People feel that if their résumé looks perfect, then it will make up for the flaws, gaps, and imperfections they have in their careers, when that couldn’t be further from the truth.
To extend the metaphor that Brian Hoff used in the original Bloomberg piece: if Times New Roman is like wearing sweatpants to an interview, using Didot or Garamond is like a high school student going to an interview and expecting to be named CEO…just because he wears a suit.
Look, your résumé can’t be an incomprehensible mess, typed in Wingdings, and written in a rainbow of colors, but the font you use should be an afterthought, not seen as the key to landing a job.
If you don’t have real substance to your résumé, then the best font in the world can’t help fake it for you. Likewise, the worst font will never overshadow the fact that someone is a great candidate.
So relax, the font on your résumé doesn’t matter. Instead of wasting time trying to pick the “perfect” font use that time to add substance. That is what a hiring manager is going to really see.
Unless of course you are applying for a job as a typography expert. In that case, you’re on your own.