Your resume is not only for recruiters

Back in 2008-09 one of the seniors shared a tip that one should update resume even when not actively looking for a job change. I never realized the full value of that advise at once. Later I started following on that advise and used to update my resume generally every year in the month of November or December until 2015. I was caught up in dilemma which I suppose many must be facing about how little or how much more information is sufficient to be added in a resume. During that struggle I learnt what different things common people and extraordinarily successful professionals do to make resumes creative and impressive. At one point of time, I even took paid services of one of the leading job portals and fortunately quickly realized that it was surely a waste of money and time. The resume they presented was merely based on packaging jargons and hot keywords which search engines can help recruiters quickly find relevant profiles.

In the process leaving that bitter experience behind, those variety of tricks/techniques, the merits and demerits aside, I really started liking visual resume techniques. After iterations and improvisations finally in 2014 I ended up creating one visual resume which impressed me, most importantly convinced me.

Since then, I started believing your resumes are not only to impress recruiters, but one must also give importance to create resume which,

  1. Reminds, how far you have come through
  2. Helps you with impressive visual snapshot or a mind map of your journey and key milestones, which ultimately
  3. Motivates you subconsciously to visualize future path positively based on your current pursuit towards it

So here is my latest iteration after a gap of few years.

My career timeline

Thanks if you have stayed till here. Please do let me know your thoughts and comments how you approach your resume.

Infographics in Resume Using Word 2013

The world knows the power of Microsoft Office. I am not going to add anything new to it. Rather I will share how it helped me very recently.

I wanted to update my resume. After trying couple of templates & ideas I was not happy with its appeal. I had to do lot of compromise to compress the information. And yet it had too much of text.

To update I set following objectives for myself,

  • It must be only 3 pages (ideally 2).
  • The First page should convey all my skills & experience without compressing details,
  • Second page should convey my key achievements and other detail effectively,
  • Third page should have details of work experiences as additional references.
  • It should content more visuals for quick attention & understanding of reviewer.

There are tons of free/paid templates available on the web. I did try few of them. However while customizing them to add my details was not fitting up to my objective very quickly & easily.

First, I decided to put following outline so that I can limit it to 3 pages effectively,

Page 1 Page 2 Page 3
Summary & ObjectivesProfessional & Technical Skills with my self-assessmentWork History Snapshot EducationKey AchievementsCertifications

Personal Details

Extramural Engagements

Voluntary Assignments

Work Details.

Second I thought of using free Infograph creation tools available online. Some of them are really cool & great. However with the free version I was getting limited control of it.

I didn’t want to copy only InfoGraphic Images generated on online tool and paste into my document. That’s will impact the searching of important keywords within my profile.

There is no point in having visually great resume but not searched by recruiters for requirements.

I started exploring what options with in Word or Excel can help me. Initially I started with Excel as I wanted to put timeline table & work the graphics around it. After experimenting a bit I stopped. I realized the same can be done within Word. This way I can avoid the effort of adjusting formatting while porting data from Excel to Work.

I used Insert > Illustrations Group > Shapes to create shapes to depict data I wanted to visualize & show.

I was able to create required Tables as following,


I could add following Illustrations using just the Table (timeline), Shapes, Text Boxes, Arrows & Colors




I had to spend almost ~8 hours formatting & fitting all the Shapes & Text boxes aesthetically well within my constraints & page layouts.

The free icons found on the internet couple of years back helped me enhance the visual impact. It also met my objective while retaining the control of the visual design.

I shared new resume (Resume – Mukesh Shende – Nov 2014) with some of my friends & contacts and received extremely positive reactions. I also received feedback which will help me tune this in future.

I am happy that my resume looks the way I want to present it just by using Office Word 2013. Hope it also helps me get right attention from recruiters in my job search

Super importantly I learnt how I can use simple & powerful office tools to create meaningful InfoGraphs. I will experiment further on this in my reporting & presentations.

If you like this learning, please do share your experiences with me.

Free Icon Courtesy and