According to recent hiring statistics, you need a visually attractive resume template paired with a tailored-for-the-job work history. If you’d like something a step above standard word processors but don’t have Microsoft Office, it’s easy to create a professional resume with the free Apache OpenOffice suite. Here are some great templates and tips to help you get started.
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For anyone unfamiliar with OpenOffice, this powerful word processor is part of an open source office suite project provided by the Apache Software Foundation. Their goal is to create a community of developers, students, businesses and casual users to create a free, effective and user-friendly office suite.
While OpenOffice also supports a spreadsheet, presentation, drawing, equation and database applications, we’ll be looking at their free word processor and how you can edit or build your resume within the platform. Here are some simple built-in tools that can help you elevate your OpenOffice resume.
Make your resume appear well-organized by using tables. With tables, you can easily create a two- or three-column layout that maximizes space. Working with tables is quite easy in OpenOffice — our templates above show the final product of columns, but rows can create a structured look.
Be careful if you’re submitting table-heavy resumes through an applicant tracking system (ATS), because the information in tables could get lost or not be read. To make sure your resume does not end up in the “resume black hole,” use our ATS-optimized templates instead.
You can summarize just about anything with a graph, including your years of experience in different career fields. The best way to make a graph resume is by using Calc, which is the accompanying spreadsheet software in OpenOffice. Once you’ve created your graph, copy and paste it into Writer.
Before using this feature, though, consider the job you’re applying to. If you’re applying to a large corporation, it’s possible they use an ATS that can’t read graphs. If that’s the case, your carefully formatted information can get lost, reducing your chances of making it past an ATS and into the hands of a hiring manager.
Grammar, spelling and punctuation errors are a sure-fire way to get your application rejected. Polish your resume by using one of the free grammar extensions in Writer. Lightproof Grammar Checker is a highly rated grammar checker in OpenOffice. It’s simple to use, and it’s free.
OpenOffice has the same structure, including access to their template library, as most familiar word processors like Microsoft. We shared a few of our most popular templates in an OpenOffice-friendly format, but you can also find additional resume templates stored locally in the program, and uploaded to Apache’s online library by your fellow job seekers.
OpenOffice has a document conversion wizard that can be used to convert Word documents into the .ott file format, making it highly compatible with Microsoft Office. We converted eight of our most popular resumes to make our featured examples above, but you can also take advantage of our 400+ free resume templates to create your own Word-to-OpenOffice-compatible templates. Download a Microsoft Word resume template, then follow these steps to convert to OpenOffice:
OpenOffice makes it easy to export your document in various file formats, including PDF. Simply click the File menu and choose “Export as PDF” to save your document in the correct format.
With a PDF document, you can be confident that your resume maintains all the formatting you’ve incorporated into your original document. Additionally, most applicant tracking systems also recognize PDF.