/ Resume Writing

The Best Resume Layout: 2018 Guide with +50 Examples and Samples

You've collated all the information that needs to go in your resume.

All that is left now is to choose a good resume layout and put that information in the resume.


Well, yes! But choosing the best resume layout is easier said than done.

The layout for resume basically defines how and in what order you choose to present your information to the recruiters.

It is extremely important that you choose a layout based on your:

  • Industry

  • Years of experience

  • Whether you're sending out resume to a human recruiter or an ATS system

We'll cover all these factors in detail in this Resume Layout: 2018 Guide.

Moreover, we're also going to explain the process of choosing a resume layout in the Best Resume Layout Examples section.

We're also going to provide you with a sample resume layout for each type of resume layout.

You can explore all our resume layouts in our resume maker and use them to create your resume.

Take a look at our Resume Layout 2017 Guide to choose the best resume layout for you.

What are the types of resume layouts?

A resume layout has to be defined across multiple dimensions which can be:

  1. The number of columns in the resume layout

  2. The number of pages in the resume layout

  3. The elements that are present in the resume layout i.e. text, charts, icons, etc.

Based on these criteria, the resume layouts that are possible can be many.

Predominantly, the first two criteria are the most important while choosing a resume layout.

We're going to discuss all three in detail below.

One column resume layout vs. Two column resume layout (or Multi-Column resume layout)

The simplest distinction in resume layouts can be in terms of how the content is organized in terms of the number of columns in the resume.

  • Single column resume layout (or one column resume layout)

The single column resume layout is the most simple resume layout.

As the name suggests, this basic resume layout has the content organized in a single column that spans the entire resume height.

Here is a sample resume layout for the one column resume:


Simple resume layout (one column resume layout)

You can see how the resume sections are aligned in a single column below one another.

  • Multi column resume layout

The multi column resume layout has multiple columns i.e. the content is arranged in the form of two or more columns, where each column has certain resume sections arranged vertically.

The most common multi column resume layout is the two column resume layout.


One page resume layout vs. Two page resume layout

The distinction here is pretty straight forward.

But the question of which resume layout to use is the one which haunts many professionals who are making their resume.

We'll tackle this question in the next section i.e. how to choose a resume layout?

Distinction based on graphical elements (charts, icons, etc.)

Based on the kind and the intensity of use of graphical elements, the resume layouts can be classified as:

The Basic Resume Layout has no (or extremely minimal) use of graphical elements.

It is the traditional way of doing things in the industry.

Nowadays, these resume layouts appear outdated and have failed to keep up with the changing trends although you'll find them being used by certain professionals.

Here's an example of a simple resume layout in black:


You can use this simple resume layout for free in our online resume builder to create your resume.

The Modern resume layout or the professional resume layout design is the most widely used among professionals with experience.

These layouts are the industry standard and have an ideal mix of color and icons along with text.

This is something the recruiters are used to seeing everyday.

Below are the modern resume layout examples:

Professional Resume Layout

Modern Resume Layout

Creative resume layouts have a high use of icons, colors and graphical elements.

They're appropriate for either creative professionals or someone trying for a job which requires them to showcase their profile visually.

Below is an example of a creative resume layout from our resume builder.


To browse more creative resume layouts, you can check out our Resume Layout: 2017 Guide.

How to choose a resume layout?

This section will guide you on how to choose a resume layout based on your professional profile, years of experience and the job you're applying to.

We're going to cover the kind of resume layouts that can be used for the following different professionals in detail and will conclude it with a summary.

Resume Layout for Students or Fresh Graduates & Early Level Professionals

Choosing a Fresh Graduate or Student resume layout is tricky business.

A fresh graduate has little or no professional experience and the resume is full of academic or other achievements.

There are a few things to consider when you are a fresh graduate or a junior professional:

a. Number of Pages
You should always follow a one page resume layout. You don't have significant experience to make a two page resume. Work on and trim your resume until you're able to restrict it to one page. This takes time. We'll highlight his in a separate post soon.

b. Number of Columns
You can optimize the use of space by using a two column resume layout. This way, you would have the ability to showcase to the recruiter multiple aspects of your profile, side-by-side. Also, since you would have little work experience, you would be able to balance the two columns easily.

c. Type of resume layout
You should always go for a modern or professional resume layout unless you are aiming for a creative role.

Resume Layout for Mid level and Senior level professionals

For more seasoned professionals with significant professional experience, the following resume layout combination is ideal:

a. Number of Pages
The number of pages as your experience increases can go up to two. Some experts say that the resume should have one page for every 15 years of work experience.

For mid and senior level candidates, a one as well as two page resume layout is ideal. Just ensure that the resume does not hang in between the first and second page.

Every line on your resume is prime real estate. Make full use of it.

b. Number of Columns
We usually recommend our senior clients to choose the single column resume layout.

To fit as much professional experience that they have in two pages is in itself very difficult. An additional column makes things more difficult and both the column are not balanced content-wise.

Having said that, in certain special cases, we do create two column resumes for mid level clients.

c. Type of resume layout
Again, always go for a modern or professional resume layout unless you are aiming for a creative role. Sometimes, you can have a graphical element here and there to better showcase your skills, but it is not necessarily required.

Resume Layout for Creative professionals

a. Number of Pages
For a creative professional, the number of pages in a resume is usually one. Creative professionals tell their story visually and use text minimally.

b. Number of Columns
The number of columns in the resume layout can be multiple for a creative professional.

c. Type of resume layout
Creative professionals primarily use creative resume layouts or infographic resume layouts with multiple graphical elements such as charts, timelines, word clouds, maps, icons, etc.

To summarize our discussion above, here's a table that gives you the short version of resume layout selection criteria.

Profession One/Two Columns One/Two Page Basic/Modern/Creative
Student Both One Page Modern
Entry Level Both One Page Modern
Mid Level One Column  One or Two Pages Modern
Senior Level One Column One or Two Pages Modern
Creative Multi-column One Page Creative