Can A Resume Be 2 Pages
Yes, a resume can be two pages long. A two-page resume is a good choice if you have more than 6 years of relevant job experience. In this case, a two-page resume may even be necessary to convey all of the critical information an employer needs to know. Also, two-page resumes are usually accepted for academia and grad school applications.
When Quantity Equals Quality
As you evolve in your career, you’ll find that things that were once relevant on your resume aren’t anymore. For example, if you’ve been in your career a few years or are changing careers, there’s no need to list every duty for every position. Learn to recognize when compromising the quantity of your experiences will impact the quality of your employment story. If you have enough relevant experience, training, and credentials pertaining to the position to showcase on more than one page of your resume, then go for it.
Note: I said relevant. This doesnt mean you detail all your accomplishments since your high school babysitting job. It also doesnt mean listing every college course you’ve taken and certification you’ve earned.
As a recruiter, I can tell you, if Im going to read a resume thats more than one page, it better tell a good story about what you bring to the table. Listing every task you did as a manager doesn’t make you a good manager. But if you tell me that you increased productivity by 25% or highlight process changes for multiple teams at several companiesyou’re justifying that space.
If you can succinctly quantify your accomplishments to tell how you made a role, job, project, or assignment better and you need more than one page to demonstrate it effectively, thats time well spent.
You Have Worked Extensively In One Field
If you have worked in your field for years and gained extensive knowledge and expertise, you may struggle to squeeze it all on to one page amidst all of your education, achievements, and skills.
So, in some cases it may be perfectly acceptable to stretch your work experience section over two pages. While you could attempt to squeeze all of your previous roles onto a single page, you may find that does not leave you with enough space to truly demonstrate your contribution and impact.
If your most recent two or three roles are hyper-relevant to the vacancies you are applying for, then employers will thank you for providing them with more detail on them, and that will lead to more interviews for you. Bulk up those recent roles to show off the skills you used the most. To add to this, include some powerful achievements, backed up by facts and figures. Even the busiest of hiring managers will make time for a two-page résumé if it is packed with proven results.
If you find that expanding on current roles is leaving you with little space on the second page, you can always provide one-line summaries for less recent experience, or even completely omit roles that are no longer relevant.
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Make It Through The Ats
First, a longer resume allows you to craft a resume that will successfully make it through the Applicant Tracking System . ATS are used by the vast majority of companies. They are designed to choose only those that most closely match the job description and weed out the rest.
Your resume will only be seen by a human if it successfully makes it through the ATS scan. As a result, part of your goal needs to be ensuring that your resume meets ATS requirements.
What are those requirements? First, the ATS scans to ensure that resumes match the keywords in the job description. You must match the keywords to make it through successfully.
Second, they also scan for the frequency of keywords. As a result, successful applicants need to ensure both the existence of keywords and sufficient frequency throughout the resume. Frankly, ensuring keyword frequency without monotony may be hard to do without two pages.
Revise Sections To Fityour Needs
Thesetemplates have a section for Certificates. But feel free to revise thatsection header to Continuing Education to include seminars, licenses, or otherqualifications. If you dont have anything to list that could be considered ascontinuing education, use this section for awards or another job entry.
Just renamethe header name to the appropriate title and revise the boxes below to includethe information you would like.
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What About The Extra Space
If the text on the second page is only one or two lines, you may want to consider reformatting and sticking to the one page rule. Otherwise, dont be overly concerned about the extra space on the second page. Recruiters have short attention spans and wont want to scan more information than they have to.
But if you feel compelled to fill that space, be strategic and make sure the information is relevant. If you havent already done so, add information on your leadership, organizations, volunteer work, hobbies, or sports activities. This will show employers you have a life outside of work and give some insight into your personality.
Also keep in mind that this information doesnt have to be in text format. Ive seen some great resumes recently that have outlined these items using pie charts, timelines, and graphs. Just remember these fancy formats dont always translate well when applying online and can wind up a jumbled mass of code.
So, whats the moral of the resume length debate? In the digital application world, size doesnt really matter. As long as you tell a compelling story about your employment history thats easy on the eyes, your page breaks will be forgiven.
What If Your Resume Is More Than Two Pages
What if youre aiming for a two-page resume and its running three pages or longer? Youll need to cut it down. Part of developing a great resume lies in the revision!
Remember, the most important goal of a resume is obtaining an interview, because an interview can actually get you the job. The most important goal-contributing part of a resume is thus the quantifiable achievements, because they tell a hiring manager this is what I could do if you hired me.
When you revise, focus on the goal of obtaining an interview. Any information that doesnt contribute is secondary, and can be pared down. If your resume lists a number of early jobs that dont contribute to your prospective role, for example, they can be streamlined.
Two-page resumes allow job seekers to present their qualifications, ensure readability, and successfully navigate the ATS. They are especially helpful to those with a decade or more of experience, prospective senior managers, and those in highly specialized fields.
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Include Contact Details On Both Pages
Adding your name and contact details to the top of both pages allows the hiring manager access to your contact information regardless of the page they happen to be looking at. It also helps them to reunite your resumes two pages if theyre separated.
To make your name and contact details easy to find, set themside inside a colorful resume header. Your header acts like a company letterhead, emphasizing your personal brand and ensuring your resume stands out.
Make Your Ideas More Concise
The first step you should take when editing your resume is to make your ideas brief. You can do this by focusing on the key idea of each sentence to shorten sentences in your summary or objective, professional experience or other sections. For example, on a data entry clerk resume, instead of saying:
Demonstrated proficiency reviewing and entering test requisition form data , identifying inadvertently omitted test codes and notifying appropriate department for resolution
you could simply say:
Accurately reviewed and entered data daily from 400+ test requisition forms while identifying and reporting inaccuracies.
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Be Clear And To The Point
When trying to reduce your resume, be sure to review each line for repetitive statements.
For example, you do not need to point out you did the same thing at every job you have had.
Also, remove statements that do not directly refer to a skill you have or an accomplishment youâve completed.
Tip: Remember, you can always expand on certain items in the interview. No need to list every detail on your resume.
Another trick involves how many bullet points you assign to each position.
Review the skills they are looking for and tailor them to the job description.
What past jobs demonstrate those skills the most?
Those are the positions that should be 4-5 bullet points because itâs most relevant.
The first couple of positions on your resume can be limited to 2-3 bullet points because they are not as relevant or because you are mentioning similar things with your other positions.
Change Your Resumes Formatting
If your resume has wide margins and a large font, youâre going to have a hard time fitting all the information you need on two pages. After clarifying the content, read our advice on resume margins and font size, as well as the top 10 resume fonts. This will help your resume appear balanced, relevant, and easy to read.
Many people opt to use templates they find online. The templates you find on Etsy, Canva, or other sites are often very visually appealing and use a lot of white space however, multiple columns can confuse ATS scans so proceed with caution.
âIf your resume includes more than a square inch of white space at any point, adjust your settings. Thatâs valuable real estate! Play with the margins, tabs, and justification settings,â advises Caitlin.
Note: white space refers to spaces without content, no matter what color youâve opted to use or any lines youâve incorporated into your resume.
Finally, be wary of any site or resume builder that offers a subscription service for resume templatesâtheyâre notorious for charging unknowing job seekers month after month. When in doubt, DIY your resume or hire a reputable service.
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Whats Wrong With A Two
There might be some readers out there for whom two-page resumes are the norm who are wondering why this article exists at all. To those readers, we extend our congratulations so far, youve been lucky enough to avoid lazy or harried interviewers who consistently receive far too many applications for them to read.
While everyone who applies for a given job position deserves a fair shot, the truth of the matter is that at the end of the day, hiring managers and recruiters are just people. And people are flawed, stressed out, and above all usually in some kind of hurry.
Thats why two-page resumes have historically been viewed as bad for a hiring manager at a large company who might typically receive over a hundred applications for any given listing, reading every resume closely just isnt feasible.
But that doesnt mean that two-pagers are always a bad thing. In fact, there are a lot of situations in which a second page might be preferable, even with the added time this might take to read.
When A Longer Resume Is Acceptable
That said, there are some scenarios where you may not manage to cram your entire valid work history onto a single page. For example, if you’ve held several high-level positions, each of which entailed a different set of responsibilities, you’ll want to include all of that information to prove that you’re the well-rounded worker you claim to be.
Say you held several management positions, one of which focused on product development and another of which was marketing-oriented. If you’re now applying for a vice president’s role — in other words, a level above your current one — and you want to prove that you’re experienced in both product development and marketing, you might need more than a single page to accomplish that.
Additionally, a longer resume is often needed if you job-hopped a lot during your career. If you omit certain employment information, you risk leaving a gap in your work history, which could turn off some potential employers.
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Tips For Writing A Two
- Place your most important qualifications on the first page: Both applicant tracking systems and human hiring managers want to see a candidates most relevant skills given pride of place at the very beginning of the resume. The best way to do this is to use a resume summary to provide a brief synopsis of the expertise and professional skills that make you a strong candidate for the job youre applying for.
- Incorporate keyword phrases: Use keywords in your resume summary, and then rinse and repeat throughout your Professional Experience section. Applicant tracking systems calculate the number of years youve practiced a particular skill, so industry-specific keywords need to be repeated in each job description.
- Showcase quantifiable achievements: One of the primary advantages of using a two-page resume is that it gives you space to highlight your career accomplishments. Do this in the Professional Experience section by describing your work responsibilities in a brief paragraph, and then providing examples of important contributions in a three- or four-item bulleted list.
- Length of page two: Although you dont have to fill the entire second page of your resume, you should have enough text to fill at least a third of the page . If your text is running short, try to add more relevant information, keywords, and bulleted accomplishments . Play with font sizes and margins. If these strategies dont work, however, you should probably stick with a one-page resume.
You Have Tons Of Technical Experience
It is not uncommon for technical résumés to spill onto the second page. An expert engineer or developer could have hundreds of tools and technologies in their arsenal, so they cannot always reasonably be expected to squeeze them all onto a single page. As a technical person you are also required to translate your technical knowledge to less technically minded people in the recruitment processand this will take up valuable space on the résumé.
You may also find it helpful to add a technical skills list at the bottom of your résumé to present a complete picture. This ensures that recruiters will find you in tech specific searches but you wont overwhelm readers by cramming every tool youve ever used into your profile at the top of your résumé.
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List Important Accomplishments Instead Of Tasks
Instead of creating a list of all the job duties youve had at each of your professional experiences, list only your greatest, most relevant accomplishments. Be sure to review the job description so you can include achievements the employer will find interesting. Quantify your success with numbers when possible such as the number of people you lead, an amount or percentage of time you saved or an amount or percentage of money you made or saved.
You Are A Contract Worker
Contractors have always found it notoriously difficult to write their résumés. If youve had 10 contracts over the past five years, it will be nearly impossible to get them onto a one-page résumé.
Therefore, as a contractor its definitely acceptable to stretch your résumé over two pagesbut this doesnt mean that you need to submit a seven-page résumé with a detailed paragraph on every job you have ever done. You still need to be selective and ensure that you are only providing details that will be relevant to the employers you are approaching.
This may mean that you provide lots of detail in current roles and summarize your older work. Or it may mean that you batch similar projects into a single summary to avoid repeating yourself throughout the document.
If you are targeting a particular specialism, you may have to provide lots of detail in roles where you had exposure to that specialism, and cut down some of your more generic work.
An efficient approach for many contractors is to create a few different résumés, with each being targeted towards a different niche or industry. This will take a while to setup, but it will make your job hunt much quicker once you start applying for roles.
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When To Use A Three
Most people believe resumes should fit on two pages max, no matter how long youve been working. However, as with all rules, there are some exceptions.
For example, if you work for the federal government youre a senior-level manager with a long track record of accomplishments or youre writing an academic CV for a research or scientific position and have an extensive list of publications, speaking engagements, professional courses, licenses, or certifications then you may need to extend your resume to three or more pages.
How Many Pages A Resume Should Be
How long should your resume be? The answer is that the length of your resume depends on a number of factors. It depends on how much experience you have and what level candidate you are. If you’re an entry-level candidate, a page should be plenty.
For more experienced candidates, it’s fine to have a longer resume. Read below for more detailed information on how long your resume should be, and tips for making your resume the perfect length.
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Why You Should Consider Creating A Two
If you are a mid-level professional, there are several good reasons for creating a two-page resume. Perhaps the most important of these is that many companies now use an automated applicant tracking system to carry out the initial screening of the resumes they receive .
Such systems are programmed to privilege resumes that use and repeat specific keyword phrasesthe bots assess both the placement and the frequency of industry-specific keywords in a resume. They also look for the length of experience one has in using particular job skills.
Expanding your resume to two pages will enable you to repeat these essential keywords throughout your professional experience section.
Although this may seem awkward and redundant stylistically, it is one of the best ways to ensure that your resume is one of the scanned resumes that actually make it to the stage where it will be considered by the human eye of a hiring manager.