8 Easy E-Resumes Guidelines


And e-resume (aka electronic resume) is a key component in your job search tool kit!

The reason you need one is this:

on most online job posting boards and website application software, if you copy/paste a formatting MS Word document the content will likely get garbled in transmission!  This is because of the formatting tools used in Word to make your resume visually appealing and quick & easy to read (the bold and italics, indents, and underlining, etc.)


**Basic rule of thumb is that electronic resumes should only use the characters of the old-fashioned typewriters – asteriks, dashes, CAPS, etc., and not any of the word processing format tools we’ve gotten used to in the electronic age.**


Here’s 8 quick & easy e-resume writing guidelines on electronic resume format tips, and when & how’s for posting e-resumes:

1) E-resumes are used to attach directly into the body of an email – AND/OR
2) Also use electronic resumes to cut and paste into an online jobsite/job posting when it requests your resume (NOTE: DO NOT cut & paste your nicely formatted “pretty” MS Word file of your resume online – it will get all garbled and illegible because of the nice formatting like italics and bold)

3) Here’s your first step in formatting your e-resume:  convert a Word document to “Text-Only” or “Plain Text” file (when it’s done, you’ll Copy/Paste the e-resume format into the job board online application forms and/or emails)

4) Next: list all of your contact information on separate lines. For example:

Judy Jobseeker
345 Good Lead Lane
Great Company, FL 33709


5) DO NOT USE: bold, italics, underline, indents, columns, centering, right justified margins, or bullet points. Instead, USE CAPS, – dashes, *asterisks for emphasis in place of the above formatting techniques

6) Use an even left margin for each line

7) USE KEYWORDS heavily throughout the e-resume. You can even have a keyword section. Computer scanning programs will be programmed to sort through resumes and select those meeting certain search criteria. You may want to add your own keyword section that is new each time you use your e-resume

8) If possible, send an MS Word or pdf version of your resume as a file attachment when emailing your resume in addition to cutting/pasting your e-resume into the body of the email after your cover letter, and/or, at least bring your nicely formatted (print version) with you to the interview.


Converting a content-poor resume into an electronic format won’t do you any good – compelling content with the right key words is king for e-resumes.

You can’t rely on fancy formatting to look slick and appealing to catch attention, because e-resumes are so stripped down, as you’ve just read about.

Wondering if your resume is ready to be converted to an electronic format?  

Send me yours at info@resumeconfidence.com.  I’ll give you my 30-second scan impression of your current resume, which is exactly how much time an employer will take to decide if it warrants more in-depth reading (and possibly an interview), or to delete/discard it.