But for most of you reading this, the reason you want to create a website is because you want to get a job, and you know a sleek resume website highlighting your experience could help you stand out from other candidates—or even help a hiring manager find you to fill a position.
And while you could just copy and paste your resume onto a web page, the online possibilities really are endless, so why not go big or go home?
Don’t worry, though; this doesn’t have to take weeks of your life. If you want to turn your resume into a website that impresses, try one of the strategies below—all of which can be done with no coding knowledge and very little time using website building tools like Squarespace.
Strategy 1: Link to Your Resume From a Landing Page
There are a couple benefits to this approach. First, if you have a resume you’re proud of, the bulk of the work is already done—all you have to do is write a short bio for the landing page, pick a photo that represents you or your work, and put it all together. (We’ve laid out how to build this site itself in an hour or less here.) So you’re still boosting your name in Google results without too much work on your end. You’re also giving hiring managers your resume in a form they’re very familiar with; they can download it, print it, share it with other team members, and more pretty easily.
The biggest downside of putting your resume on the web this way is that search engines can’t read PDFs, so if a hiring manager happened to be Googling for someone with your experience, they wouldn’t necessarily be able to find you. Combat this by including keywords related to your industry and highlighting important skills in the bio text on your landing page, as well as optimizing other on-site SEO features.
Strategy 2: Create a Page for Each Section of Your Resume
This method will take a little extra work, but it will result in a more full-blown website (that’s fully searchable!).
Basically, you’re going to transform each section of your resume into a page on your website. So, your home page might be akin to an objective or summary statement—giving visitors a high-level overview of who you are, what you do, and what you’re looking for. Then, you’ll create a page for your experience, your skills, your education, your achievements, even your hobbies if you want to share a little of your personality—each of which will show up in your site menu, making it easy for hiring managers to find the information they’re looking for.
For the text on each page, start by copying and pasting the text from your resume—but then think of ways to style or bulk it up to look a little nicer on the web. This could range from putting the name of each company you’ve worked for in a header font that stands out to using icons to visualize each of your skills. And don’t forget to add links to companies you’ve worked with and projects you’ve worked on when applicable—this is meant to be more dynamic than your paper resume.
Also consider ways to make each page feel a little more cohesive and stand-alone. This might mean having a beautiful image related to the work that you do at the top. Or, you could include a short summary before diving into the bullet points and specifics.
No matter how you go about styling each page, you want to make sure hiring managers can reach out once they see how awesome you are. So, don’t forget to make a page with your contact information and social profiles as well, and include a button at the bottom of all of the other pages directing people there.
Strategy 3: Turn Your Website Into a Multimedia Timeline of Your Work History
This last method will take the most work—but if you’re really looking for your site to help you stand out, it may just do the job. Similar to LinkedIn, you’re going to create a single-page, reverse-chronological timeline of your work history—but this one will be souped up with multimedia elements and designed to be extra beautiful.
Then, starting from your most recent work experience to your least, create a section for each place you’ve worked. Feel free to throw relevant volunteer work, side projects, or other personal achievements into the timeline if you want—just make sure to keep it all in order so someone is scrolling through your professional past as they go down your page.
As you’re building out each section, start with your standard bullet points explaining what you did, but then think of ways to add a little oomph. Maybe that’s adding testimonial pull quotes from bosses or co-workers at past jobs. If you have a particularly visual job, you could add a mini portfolio to each role, using a gallery to show specific examples of your work at that company. You could add infographic elements showing off your achievements, videos of speaking gigs you did, a stream of tweets or Instagrams you helped produce—the possibilities are endless (and the right thing for you is going to vary by industry), so get creative!
And, again, you want to make sure people can reach out to you, so include you contact information somewhere on the page—or even in the header so it’s front and center and easy to find.
Once you have your online resume ready to go, don’t be afraid to share it! Add the URL to your paper resume, your LinkedIn profile, your social media accounts, really anywhere recruiters or hiring managers could potentially find you.
And then share it with me [Erin Greenawald], on Twitter!