A plea for creatives to be a little less… creative with CVs

As a consultant for a specialist design and creative services recruitment consultancy, I have found myself having the same conversation with a number of leading creative directors in recent months.

It appears that there is a growing tendency among junior/mid-level designers and creatives to ‘over style’ their CVs, by incorporating artwork, and using a wide range of fonts and typefaces.

While the intention is clearly to give CVs the ‘wow factor’, most employers seem to be in agreement – too much creative input on a CV only serves as a distraction and can, in fact, put employers off interviewing prospective candidates.

CVs should be kept clean, simple and detailed, and should clearly outline skills, experience and key background information about the candidate.

Supporting artwork that is submitted alongside the CV should be left to do the talking about a candidate’s creative ability.

Grant Richards, Senior consultant, Design and creative services, RP Cushing Recruitment, by e-mail



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  • peter November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

    In reply to Grant Richards letter, I have to say that put quite simply, Grant you are talking b*****s mate.

    When people do send in CV’s as you have described they never get looked at properly, I have sent in 3 to you in the last 6 months, as have a few of my friends, which is why designers have gone down the road to show what they can do, why stamp on a candidates creativity, after all that’s why we are in this business.

    It’s just typical of recruiters and their lack of understanding about design, a typical attitude of glorified sales reps, who are only interested in filling vacancies.

  • bill davis November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

    When it comes to typography, a little good sense goes a long way. I would agree that too much “creativity” can ruin the desired impact of a CV.

    But I would also argue that a return to only using “Gill Sans” or “Times New Roman” can make a CV disappear into a pile of competitive documents vying for attention.

    A set of smart typefaces can be just the right magic to enhance the typography of a CV. And good fonts aren’t that expensive anymore: check out http://www.fontmarketplace.com as one example of creative tools for designers who are working to enhance their CV.

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