- Rich Text (RTF) version, sometimes used for online job boards (such as Monster and Yahoo HotJobs) or for sending as an attachment that is reasonably compatible across platforms and word-processing programs. A Rich Text Format (RTF) resume can be created in most word-processing programs by saving the resume as Rich Text with a file extension of .rtf. Generally speaking, the formatting and attractive visual presentation created in the original document will hold up in the Rich Text resume, although more complex formatting (such as columns or tables) may not hold up. It’s best to test the Rich Text resume by sending it to the computers of a few friends to see how the formatting looks on the other end. Rich Text can be an excellent choice as an e-resume attachment because it is compatible across all platforms and word-processing programs. It’s also far less vulnerable to viruses than are Word documents. In terms of attachments, it’s the best choice when you can’t determine what file type the employer prefers, but it should be accompanied by the text version of your resume pasted into the body of the e-mail message to which the RTF resume is attached.
- Portable Document Format (PDF) resume that is also highly compatible and consistent in appearance across platforms, though difficult to place directly into databases. PDF resumes offer the advantages of being completely invulnerable to viruses and totally compatible across computer systems (requires Adobe Acrobat Reader software, a free download, to be opened and read). Have you ever noticed that when you send a resume (or any document) as an attachment from your computer to someone else’s computer, it sometimes doesn’t look the same on the other person’s computer as it did on yours? Maybe it has more pages on the other computer, or maybe Page 2 starts at the bottom of Page 1, or maybe the fonts are different. A resume converted to PDF, which carries a .pdf file extension, looks virtually identical to the original document from which it was created, thus preserving the resume’s visual appeal, and it also appears consistently from computer to computer. Some employers specifically request PDF resume files.