The Pros and Cons of Using an Online Resume Builder
There are many resume builder sites, templates, and resume generator apps available, and most of them are free. Online resume builders are a great resource that can give you ideas for your resume or guide you through the steps of writing one. There are advantages to using a resume builder, and most job applicants can benefit from one, although there are also a few situations where a resume builder has downsides.
To see whether you’re better off using a resume builder or creating a resume on your own, take a look at the pros and cons:
- A resume builder helps you create a resume that’s professional, with an up-to-date design. You’ll make a good first impression on a future employer because your resume is attractive and readable.
- A resume generator may either guide you through the process of inputting information or give you a template that you can fill in. If you’ve ever stared at a blank piece of paper and thought, “I don’t know where to start,” a resume generator completely solves that problem.
- A resume builder can save time, especially if you aren’t comfortable using design software or if you don’t have much experience with creating resumes. You don’t have to try to figure out how to add a column or border, for example, because the layout you choose will already have those elements included.
- Resume generators give you choices. You can select the themes that best fit your personality and features that are relevant to your application. Being able to mix and match elements of the resume means that the finished product can be customized rather than a one-size-fits-all form.
- Many resume generators are free to use. You can choose from a variety of layouts, fonts, and color schemes without having to buy any new software.
- A resume builder prompts you to input all your contact information as well as the names of previous employers, dates of employment, and other standard details. That can help ensure that you don’t leave out anything vital. Browsing templates and examples may even give you new ideas of things to mention and remind you of experiences and skills that you hadn’t thought to include in a resume.
- Resume builders make it easy to update a resume and to swap out information. You can slightly tweak a resume to tailor the information to different employers. For example, in one resume you might want to emphasize your operations experience, but you could create another version to highlight your financial expertise when you apply for an accounting role.
- If you have a specific vision for the layout of your resume, you probably won’t find a template that provides the exact design you want. In that case, you’ll probably need to make a lot of changes to a template or simply start from scratch and create the design yourself.
- A resume that you create with an app may look very similar to the resumes of other applicants if they use the same template. This usually isn’t a big deal, but if you really want your resume to stand out or if the possibility of a look-alike bothers you, you may want to skip the resume builder.
- A resume builder may give you a document that feels generic. This can be a problem if your field is marketing or graphics, because you want your creativity to shine through in your application. If you have a background in creative arts, it’s often worth it to spend the time creating a resume yourself rather than relying on a resume generator.
- Resume templates provide space for common fields like education, work experience, and skills. If you want to leave a section blank for some reason—for example, if you don’t have any degrees to list in the education section—you could end up with a big gap in the layout if your resume builder doesn’t automatically adjust for it. You may have to do some extra work to move content around and rebalance the look of the resume.
- Many resume builders provide placeholder text that shows where to insert your information. If you’re not careful, you could accidentally leave a fake job title or phone number in the resume, which would definitely raise a red flag for employers reviewing your application. This isn’t really a reason not to use a resume builder, but it is a possible mistake to watch out for. Although a resume builder can make crafting a resume a little easier, you still have to proofread and double check the information in your resume.
- There are many resume builders online offering dozens of templates each. For some people, having a lot of available options can be overwhelming, and it can be hard to pick one layout from so many choices. If that describes you, set a timer for 30 minutes when you look at templates. If you haven’t made a selection in that time, ask a friend to help you narrow it down.
Resume builders are convenient and easy to use, and they can help you quickly create a professional resume even if you don’t have an eye for design. For most people, those pros outweigh the cons. But when individuality or creativity is paramount, it can make more sense to create a resume from scratch.