Talking Tech Friday – Resumes

Today’s topic is the result of the last Tech Talk meeting.  While we were talking about teaching computer classes for patrons, one of the librarians wondered about whether online word processors like Open Office and Google Docs had templates for creating resumes – a popular question from patrons these days.

I promised I would take a look and decided to make it a Talking Tech column – a little out of the usual format, but I hope to be forgiven.

And, as a reminder, I am always open to comments or suggestions for Talking Tech columns. Let me know if you’d like to see more of something, or something new, or less of something in the comments – or send an email to

Google Docs

We’ve looked a Google Docs a few times in Tech Talk, both as a meeting topic and a Talking Tech column.  This past summer, Google added templates to the Docs suite. You can limit the template types to “Resumes and Cover Letters.”  There are about 19 styles with some nice options – users can rate templates so you can see which ones are most highly rated, there are options to embed it in a website, and you can preview a template before choosing to use it.  Clicking on the thumbnail also brings up a preview.

If you choose to use a template, you’ll be prompted to log in to your Google account if you haven’t already.  Then the template opens up in a new window, including all the Lorum Ipsum gibberish text in the preview.  I assume this is to demonstrate how to fill out the resume – I personally find that a little distracting, but I can see how it would be helpful.  Then you just save it like you would any Google Doc.  Here’s an example (caveat: not my real resume).


Zoho, my new favorite online word processor, also has a Template Library.  While there aren’t as many as Google has, in my opinion these are more sophisticated, and maybe better for a more experienced user.  Just as a note, I also like the formatting capabilities of the regular Zoho Writer, without the template, for creating resumes.  For resumes, they are less stylistic than Google, but more practical with different layouts for, say, Marketing, or an academic style called “Fresher”.  The Fresher or UI Designer would be the ones I’d be more likely to use.

With Zoho, you can preview a template – which has an actual resume rather than gibberish.  If you like a template, you add it to your templates in Zoho Writer, which you can then access when you go to your account.  Once you get to your account, click on “My Templates” in the left sidebar, then choose the one you’d like to edit.  Like Google, it opens it up with all the text included, which you can then edit to your heart’s delight.

Open Office Templates

Open Office is a free, open source package, but it needs to be downloaded and installed on your computer.  You can download and install various extensions to enhance the functionality, such as this list of document templates.  Apparently, you can also export the Microsoft Word templates to Open Office.  To be honest, I’ve never used Open Office before, so I can’t go into much detail on how it actually works, but there is a wealth of user communities available for help, and the Open Source format allows for a lot of creative user-generated options.

Random templates

The internet is full of resume tips and advice, as well as tons of resume template designs.  Here are just a few examples from a basic search:

  • Free Resume Templates has sample templates for a variety of positions and professions, which you can download or email.
  • Microsoft Office Online – downloadable templates that can be browsed by job category or situation specific. Naturally, only compatable with MS Word (though can probably be exported to Open Office, as above).
  • College – downloadable templates in MS Word, Wordperfect, Rich Text File (.rtf) or Text (.txt).
  • Resume Samples Directory – ad-studded site which doesn’t really have templates, but does have samples for a variety of positions. Despite it’s cheesy site design, I think the general samples and advice are sound.
  • Advice and tips (including a tutorial) from the Employment Spot.  I’m pretty impressed by this site, in general.

So, what are your favorite resume building resources?  What do you recommend to your patrons?  Let’s hear it in the comments!


~ by Anali on October 3, 2008.

One Response to “Talking Tech Friday – Resumes”

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