Making a Resume in InDesign

It’s always a good time to revamp an old resume. You can bring a boring, unappealing resume to life with Adobe InDesign! Put Microsoft Word to the side, because it’s InDesign’s time to shine.

There are endless possibilities on InDesign, so if you’re overwhelmed with where to start, you can check out Adobe InDesign templates that are free to download. They have a colorblock, bold, modern, basic, and bordered option.

If you look at these templates and you don’t love any of them, InDesign makes it extremely easy for you to create your own. Just a few tips to get you started:


Setting up a Project File

  • Open InDesign and click on “Create New”.
  • Change your units to whatever works best using the “Units” drop down menu. I normally choose inches, but they also have picas, points, centimeters, and several other options.
  • Make sure to choose “Portrait” for your orientation.
  • Make sure to add columns (usually 2 is perfect for a resume). The default is set to 1.
  • Set your margins in the “Margin” drop down (usually a half inch or an inch on all sides is perfect). This will create a magenta colored box that acts as a guide for you to keep your content within.


Alignment using Grids, Guides, and Rulers

  • Once in the project document, there are tabs on the top bar. Go to “View”, then “Grids and Guides”
    • Choose Document grid for horizontal and vertical lines over document
    • Choose Baseline grid to show horizontal lines that will help with aligning text
    • Make sure “Smart Guides” are on which will allow Adobe InDesign to suggest alignment for an object in relation to others (i.e. if there are two separate lines of texts and one is they aren’t on the same baseline, moving one line of text near the other will activate smart guides to help align them on the same baseline)
  • Go to “View”, then “Show Rulers”
    • Once the rulers appear on the left and top of the document, click directly in the ruler and drag onto document to create guides. Clicking in the ruler on the left will create a vertical guide and clicking in the ruler on the top will create a horizontal guide. This helps with aligning text and objects to each other.

Hopefully, these basic tips will help you get a beautiful resume started. The rest is up to you. Add pops of color, different fonts, and play around with everything else that InDesign has to offer!

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