Resume Length: How Long Should A Resume Be
How long should a resume be? is one of the most common questions asked by job seekers.
And rightly so. No recruiter wants to wade through pages and pages of your resume.
And similarly, if your resume is too short then it looks like you havent really done much worth while, and will bring little to the new role.
So how many pages should it be?
Here at the Job Search Bible were lucky enough to work with 3 job search and career experts to provide their view on the optimal resume length.
The latest question put to our experts is:
How long should a resume be?
And here are their expert answers
Infographic Video And Website Rsums
As the Internet becomes more driven by multimedia, job-seekers have sought to take advantage of the trend by moving their résumés away from the traditional paper and email media to website résumés or e-résumés.
This trend has attracted criticism from human resources management professionals, who warn that this may be a passing fad and point out that multimedia-based résumés may be overlooked by recruiters whose workflow is designed only to accommodate a traditional résumé format.
So How Long Should A Resume Be Heres The Common Wisdom
There are a few bits of common wisdom that have defined resume length for at least the past several years, and they remain true in 2021.. The first, and perhaps the most repeated for anyone who’s gone through a career guidance course, is the one-page rule the idea that a good resume should never be more than a single page. There’s some real wisdom to this, as a one-page resume forces you to sit down and think about what’s important and what can be left off.
The other bit of conventional wisdom is the so-called “six-second rule.” The idea here is that the average recruiter is only going to spend six seconds scanning your resume, so you’ll need to make sure your information can be reliably transmitted in about that amount of time. While there’s no hard data that this rule actually applies in the workforce, it’s a good idea to remember that your resume will probably be read by a person who has very little time to do so. The more information you can communicate quickly, the better.
But here are some important considerations that may undermine those job search tropes and allow for longer resumes:
None of that means you should overstuff your resume. The rule of thumb is to be as concise as possible while using bullet points to highlight your work history and skills.
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Should A Resume Be One Page
Are one-page resumes the best?
How about a two-page resume, when should you use which?
Before we take a closer look at the case studies for different resume lengths and why it works, your resume needs to answer four simple questions:
- Who are you?
- What relevant experience do you have?
- Why are you motivated for this position?
- How will you make an impact in your role?
- What are your accomplishments and qualifications?
These four questions will help you determine how long your resume should be and keeps the hiring managers perspective in mind. By answering who you are, the recruiter has someone to pair your work experience with. More than that, they learn about your personality and potential cultural fit.
Showing your motivation for your role ensures the HR can see youre not just looking for any job, you want this one.
Most importantly, your potential impact is what will entice the recruiter most as it directly relates to their performance and business goals. To do this, always remember to quantify past experience.
That being said, lets get into Enhancvs case studies of how a one-page, two-page, and three-page resume got candidates hired in even the most competitive spaces.
So How Long Should A Resume Be
There may not be a perfect formula to follow, but keeping your resume short and to the point is the key, especially when you remember the 6-Second Rule . Following these tips faithfully can help you remove clutter and make your resume concise, focused, scannable, and reader-friendly.
Remember that the goal is to grab the attention of recruiters, HR managers, and hiring personnel and ultimately get you in the door for an interview so you can close the deal.
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Three Pages Or Longer
While three pages may seem like youre entering novella territory, this resume length can work for professionals who need the extra space.
Before going to multiple pages, take inventory of why you need the longer format. Ask yourself if your resume is built on quality versus quantity. Have you let go of early career experiences that don’t market you for your current goal?
A resume should not be an obituary of ones career, says Dagliano. To keep it concise, write with the employers needs and wants in mind. Hint: Review the job description to which youre applying and note what skills and qualifications the employer lists at the top.
Consider a three-page resume if:
- You’re a senior-level manager or executive with an impressive track record of leadership accomplishments.
- Youre in an academic or scientific field with a list of publications, speaking engagements, courses, licenses, or patents.
- Youre applying for a federal job that requires more information than a civilian application.
- You have a lengthy technical or project management background and need to provide case studies, project highlights, or lists of technical skills.
What To Do When Youre Waiting To Hear Back About A Job
The single most important thing to do while waiting to hear back about a job is to continue applying for more positions. Waiting for one single employer will only increase your anxiety and reduce the number of options you have in your job search, which can cause you to stay unemployed for longer.
Employers typically interview 6-10 candidates per job. They also frequently put jobs on hold, decide to promote someone internally, change what theyre looking for mid-search, etc.
The point is: There are too many uncontrollable factors in a job hunt, and its risky to wait for one single employer after applying for a job.
In fact, even if you went on an interview and are pretty sure it went well, you should STILL keep applying for jobs.
My rule is: Dont stop applying until youve signed a job offer and set a start date. Most job seekers dont follow this, and they end up making their job search take weeks or months longer than it needed to be.
So the #1 thing NOT to do when youre waiting to hear back about a job is to stop applying, wait anxiously by your phone or email, and put your fate in the hands of one single employer. That is just a recipe for disappointment and potential disaster.
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How Long Does A Job Interview Last
How Long Do Interviews Last? | Types of Job Interviews | Resume.com
During an interview, you have a limited amount of time to make a lasting impression that makes you stand out as the best candidate. Knowing how long your interview could last can help you prepare to maximize your time with the interviewer or hiring manager. This article discusses how long each step of the interview process lasts to help you prepare for a job interview.
Light One Page Resume Template
The Light Resume Template by Gilang Tito Dharmawan at Behance is simple, spare, and inviting. Its a one-page resume template that draws the reader in and promises quick access to pertinent info.
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Never Put Irrelevant Or Unnecessary Info On Your Resume To Make It Longer
Dont try to fill your resume with fluff or try to make it longer. No hiring manager is going to decide to interview you because you had a longer resume than someone else.
The only exception to the rule above is if your resume content is not even reaching the bottom of page one. In that case, try to make your resume fill a full page, because that just looks better.
But otherwise, you should be writing relevant skills, experience, and other qualifications that you feel demonstrate youll be a good fit for the role youve applied for.
But once youve put all the relevant info you can, stop. Adding irrelevant information just for the sake of making your resume longer is NOT going to impress any hiring managers or recruiters.
Your resume has one main purpose: To show the employer that you have the skills and experience to step into their role and be successful.
So if something isnt helping you do that, then its hurting you !
For example, if you held an irrelevant job 15 years ago and have built an entirely different career since then, take it off!
Or if youre listing 25 skills but only 10 are relevant to your current career, take those other 15 off!
By leaving them on there, youre just making it HARDER for the hiring manager or recruiter to find the relevant info that will make them want to interview you. So by leaving irrelevant info on your resume, youre costing yourself interviews.
Rule 2 Proper Spacing Is Important
Never clutter pages in an attempt to shorten your resume.
Review and narrow down any unnecessary sections to generate more space. If more room is needed, simply extend to an additional page by adding relevant skills or experiences.
Note: While double spacing is a bit much and single spacing begins to look fairly cluttered, Ive found 1.5 spacing to work best.
You can alter the fonts and tweak the format, but dont go overboard. It still has to catch the hiring managers eye.
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Prioritize Your Skills And Expertise At The Top
Your skills and expertise are primarily what the employer is looking for from a potential candidate, so emphasizing this information can provide further clarification as to why your capabilities and expertise are applicable to the role. You can try putting this information at the top of the resume where the recruiter or employer can easily find it.
The Myth Of The One Page Resume
The hard rule youre most likely to encounter is that your resume should be exactly one page long, no exceptions. Many still stand by this advice.
One page made a lot more sense when it was more common to mail, fax, or physically hand your resume to a stranger, but technology has mitigated many of the associated concerns. For example, the second page of an email attachment wont get lost in the shuffle, or a page break wont make much of a different within an applicant tracking system .
Here are some of the other reasons this advice persists beyond the fear of lost pages and pokey staples.
Resume guidelines must progress with your career
Most of us first learned how to write a resume when we were in high school or college. At that time in our lives, many of us were taught to never ever exceed a single page.
This made sense at the time. Most of us didnt have the experience to warrant two pages. The problem is that as weve developed our careers, weve carried that advice with us. The guidelines need to change once youve accomplished a few things as a professional.
The six second resume challenge
Perhaps the most cited piece of information in support of the one page resume is a 2012 study by the Ladders in which recruiters were found to spend an average of six seconds reviewing each resume before deciding how to proceed.
- The Ladders: Heat map showing that recruiters had no trouble reaching the end of long resume.
Constraints lead to a better resume
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How Long Should A Resume Be: The One
Contrary to popular belief, you do not have to squeeze 15 or more years of work experience into a one-page resume. In fact, until recently, only entry-level candidates were urged to keep their resumes to one page, as most employers assumed someone who was new to the post-college workforce wouldn’t have enough information to justify more than one page of resume real estate. But, thanks to new data, this resume-length rule may no longer apply to most job seekers at any level, as career experts claim.
According to a study that involved nearly 500 recruiters, hiring managers, and HR professionals and nearly 8,000 resumes, recruiters are 2.3 times as likely to prefer two-page resumes over one-page resumes, regardless of a candidate’s years of experience.
So, why the change in opinion? I think there are two factors to consider.
When Two Page Resumes Are Okay
Including a second page to communicate key experiences, achievements, projects or other relevant information that show your direct qualifications for a role is absolutely acceptable to employers. Alternatively, if those two pages are filled with irrelevant information such as unrelated job duties or hobbies, this can be a turn-off and put your application at risk of being passed over.
Though higher-level candidates like executives tend to have lengthier resumes due to more experience, level is not necessarily an indicator of how many pages a resume should be. While senior professionals may have an extremely well-crafted one-page resume packed full of concise, relevant information, students may also have two pages full of applicable projects, coursework, leadership experiences and internships.
When deciding on resume length, the key is to create the most concise, relevant and easy to read document possible. If possible, err on the side of one page, but not at the expense of readability. Whether your resume is one or multiple pages, length is secondary to quality content and high clarity.
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How To Fit A Resume On One Single Page
Lets get real.
An entry-level applicant can insert all relevant information under one page because he/she doesnt have much relevant experience. The alternative is appearing like theyre not making a serious enough effort to write a concise application.
For folks with more experience, however, this can be a bit trickier.
Here are some tips on how to turn your resume into a concise one-pager:
Compose Two Powerful Main
The two following paragraphs should focus on convincing the recruiter you can get the job done better than the rest.
You need to show how youre going to help the company succeed, and explain your motivations.
If youre not sure how to do this, our guide on what to include in a cover letter has all the answers.
Trim Down Your Resume
A resume is easier to scan when it’s short and precise. To accomplish this, try to limit your resume to one or two pages at most. When your resume is shorter, the recruiter or employer can review all the information much more quickly, which gives them more time to engage with the most important details.
How Long Should A Cover Letter Bebest Cover Letter Length
You know well that writing a cover letter will give your job application a serious boost. But before you get down to writing anything, you must find out how much space you have.
Just like Goldilocks likes her porridge neither too cold nor too hot
The recruiters like your cover letter to be just the right length.
Do you know how long your cover letter should be?
In this guide youll learn:
- How long a cover letter should be for the recruiter to read it.
- How many words and paragraphs are best for a cover letter.
- If a cover letter can be 2 pages, or should it always be shorter.
- How to format your cover letter to make the most of it.
Create a cover letter that matches the design of your resumepick from 18 professional templates and get a powerful resume + cover letter combo now.
You can find more examples and guides here: Cover Letter Examples to boost your hiring chance.
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Get Out Of The House And Hit The Pavement
The internet is a great tool for locating new jobs and submitting applications and resumes. However, there are also many advantages to be gained from taking a more old-fashioned approach to things. When you need a job fast, sometimes the best option is to meet employers in person. This is especially true for jobs in sectors where direct interaction with customers is a core skill requirement, such as retail, restaurants, and bars. As a rule, you should only consider this option when you want to apply at a business that has a Help Wanted sign posted outside
Because of the pandemic and lingering Covid safety protocols, it may be wise to call first to inquire about the company’s application process. Let the decision-maker know that you are interested in the position and ask whether it would be okay to stop in and submit an application or discuss the role.