Resume Length: How Long Should A Resume Be In 2021
Resume length is one of the great mysteries of the job application process. Because of it, you might be wondering, how long should a resume be?
Should it always be one page?
What if you have a lot of relevant experience and need more space to describe it?
If you have a work history that goes way back because youve been working for 25+ years, is three pages okay?
Well, it doesnt help that you can find arguments for just about any length online if you look hard enough.
Fortunately, weve analyzed the resumes of real users hired at competitive companies such as Spotify, Booking.com, Verizon Digital Media Services, Amazon, Intercom, and more. Instead of throwing opinions around, all your questions about resume length are answered in this guide.
- Why are there so many opinions about resume length?
- How long should your resume be in 2021?
- How far back should a resume go?
- Should a resume be one page?
- Whats the ideal resume length for the hiring manager?
- How to shorten my resume?
- Summary & Key Takeaways
Alternatively, you can skip this whole section and find a PROVEN resume example for your specific job position. From there, building your resume and seeing what works is simple and easy. Best of all, its free to use!
At any point in time, I would recommend Enhancv as a platform to prepare ones CV. It offers a lot of sample templates as well. Kudos to the entire team and thanks again for getting my dream job! Imran Khan
Sections To Include On Your Resume To Get More Interviews
Now that you know how long a resume should be, Im going to share some tips about what to put on your resume if you want to get interviews!
Writing great content on your resume is far more important than worrying about how many pages your resume should be.
And no matter how long your resume ends up being, there are some key pieces to always include if you want to get more interviews. So here they are
First, youll want a great resume summary paragraph. You can find examples here.
Next, make sure you have a GREAT work experience section overall. This is the first place I look on most resumes as a recruiter
Skills arent as important, because employers prefer to see WHERE you used each skill and did each task in your career. So focus mostly on your employment history and bullets to demonstrate your value to employers However once youve done that, a Skills section is still useful to include. It helps you add relevant keywords to your resume and show the company your top skills at-a-glance.
And youll also want to include an Education section where you highlight any degrees and certifications you have. Those are the main pieces Id recommend including.
We also have a detailed article going into more detail on what to put on a resume and how to structure/order everything.
So thats another resource that will help you make sure youre getting the most out of the space on your resume, whether its one page, two pages, or more.
Keep It Clear And Easy To Read
Your priority should be to keep your resume clear and easy to read. Be sure to leave enough white space on each page, use a 10- or 12-point font, and use a font that is easy to read .
That being said, dont leave too much white space. The key is to fill all, or at least three-quarters, of each page with relevant and helpful information so that the recruiter’s attention is not drawn to the blank space on the second page.
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Senior Level And Science Candidates
Executives or senior-level managers often have a long list of accomplishments and experiences that they have to include. The same is true for people in the sciences or academia who want to include their licenses, patents, or publications. These job seekers can write a resume that is three pages long or even longer.
How Many Years Of Experience To List On Your Resume
Do you have to include every job you’ve ever had on your resume? Not necessarily. When you have extensive experience, you don’t need to list your entire work history.
Your resume is a synopsis of your qualifications and experience that shows what you have accomplished that is relevant to the job. You don’t need to include everything you’ve ever done on your resume, especially if you’ve been in the workforce for many years or have shifted careers.
In fact, you may want to have several versions of your resume. One with all your experience so you can keep track of it, a targeted resume that you can customize for each job you apply to, and a shorter version for career networking and job fairs.
Also Check: How To Put Relevant Coursework On A Resume
How Long Should A Cover Letter Be
Cover letters are a great way to express your interest in a job while explaining your best qualifications. To ensure your cover letter is effective, it should be concise and easy to read. Learning how long your cover letter should be can help you construct a letter that hiring managers read all the way through. In this article, we explain how long your cover letter should be and provide an example as a guide.
Simple Resume Editing Tricks
Below are several editing and writing tricks to improve thesyntax and diction in your resume.
- Avoid vague keywords likecreative, customer-oriented, or performance-driven. These words soundgood, but dont add value to your application.
- Rewrite sentences with of the phrase. For example, In chargeof the Food and Beverage team is same as Head of Food and Beverage
- Delete unnecessary that in sentences. If you see this wordon your resume, read it without the word and see if removing it doesnt changeits meaning. If it doesnt and the sentence is grammatically correct, remove it.Youll be surprised how often you dont need this extra word.
- Remove very, really and other adverbs. Phrases with the words veryand really can either do withoutthose extras or be written in a simplified form. Executed a very successful product launch is the same as Executed a successful product launch.
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Is It Ok To Have A Three
Generally speaking, no. The exception would be if you fell into one of the above examples given by the FlexJobs career coaches. You should only use a three-page resume when everything on your resume is relevant, which often doesnt happen until late in your career. And, even when thats the case, you need to write your resume carefully to make sure you arent repeating yourself. No recruiter wants to read about your clear and concise written communication skills under every section of your resume.
Even in the case of a long work history, ask yourself if every job is still relevant to your resume. For example, the fact that you were a summer camp counselor during college might be an interesting fact, but its probably not doing much for your resume when youve been working in corporate finance for the last 9 years.
When every job is relevant or important to your resume, you may not need to include every job duty or experience. Consider highlighting only the top three or four major achievements from each job. Use the STAR method to describe how you solved problems and how these actions benefit your employer. This will help keep your experiences small, meaningful, and compelling.
Providing Irrelevant Personal Information
The personal details you are expected to include on your CV will vary in different countries. It is important to consider what information you are sharing with employers. In the UK, avoid a CV with a photograph, date of birth, nationality and marital status. Similarly, if you have social media accounts on Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and Facebook for personal use, you do not need to share these. This is another opportunity to make a positive impression.
Think about the position you are applying for and how your interests and achievements relate to it. An interest in the exhibitions would be useful to mention if you want to work in the arts sector community engagement activities would be suitable if you want to work in the charity sector involvement in sport activities would be advantageous if you want a career in the sports sector. You can highlight other activities that demonstrate transferable skills and your values.
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Get Rid Of Experience That Is Not Relevant
If youâre currently looking for an accounting job, use your vital resume space to focus on jobs that are most likely to make you stand out as a potential hire. Your most recent jobs working in the accounting field are going to carry the most weight with hiring managers. However, you probably donât need to waste space listing all the babysitting and dog walking jobs you held in high school to make some pocket change. Those jobs, while they might have been great at the time, are probably not going to tip the scales when it comes to landing a great accounting job.
Experiment With The Spacing Of Your Resume
How long should your resume be. This part of your resume should include your name, professional title, phone number, email address, and preferably a link to your linkedin and url to your website/portfolio. How long a resume is supposed to be is a hard question to answer. The document needs to reflect a job seekers accomplishments accurately.
Your resume should be 2 to 3 pages long unless youre a recent graduate or early off in your career . A good resume should be one to two pages long, depending on your level of experience. Resume page length has been shrinking over the years.
A resume with a clean and professional look is sure to make a lasting impression on hiring managers. May 13, 2020 may 13, 2020 / by fix it resume. This length provides enough information to display your skill set, but saves something to chat about during an interview.
How many pages a resume should be. One thing that makes a resume too long is having a comprehensive, reverse chronological work history that documents every position you’ve held since college. How long should your resume be?
Your resume should be one or two pages long, depending on the job description and your work experience. However, for best results, your resume should be just one page. And, even when thats the case, you need to write your resume carefully to make sure you arent repeating yourself.
How Long Should a Cover Letter Be? in 2020
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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.
How Long Should A College Resume Be
A resume for college should be one page. Do you have so many mind-altering achievements you cant fit them in a 1-page resume? Then write a two-page resume.
Expert Hint: If youre in a field where lots of experience makes you more attractive, write a 2 or 3-page resume. Just keep it relevant and focus on accomplishments.
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Including Additional Dates On Your Resume
If you’ve taken professional development courses or other educational classes, it’s not necessary to list dates. If you have certifications, you should list the dates because employers will want to know that your accreditations are current.
When leaving experience and dates off a resume, do it strategically.
A resume, for example, with only a few jobs when you’re an experienced candidate or a resume with no dates at all, can be a red flag for hiring managers. Be sure your resume provides a clear synopsis of your work history to employers.
If the positions you held earlier in your career are relevant to your current objectives, consider shortening the descriptions of your jobs to reduce the length of your resume rather than deleting the positions from your resume.
You Havent Moved Around Much
You may have several years of experience, but perhaps its with the same one or two companies, or in a role without much change. If your experience has been fairly steady, then the reality is that you may not have enough to fill in more than a page, even if youve been working for several years. In this instance, the single-page resume allows you to call out key accomplishments and achievements without getting too wordy.
Recommended Reading: Resume Rewording
Tailor Your Resume To Each Application
Many job-seekers assume that their resume should list most of the jobs theyve held in their lives. However, this is only the case if youre writing a job-seeker CV outside of North America.
The best way to ensure you achieve the proper resume length when writing your resume is to tailor it directly to the position you want.
Every job you apply for has different requirements and qualifications. Whenever you apply for a new job, your resume should change to reflect these requirements.
For example, service industry jobs can teach highly valuable soft skills. However, if youre writing a , including information about your experience waiting tables is irrelevant and should be left off.
To tailor your resume, start by looking at the job description, and remove anything that isnt directly mentioned in the listing. In particular, look out for specific skills theyre looking for, and how many years of experience they want.
Reducing your resume to only the most relevant information not only helps you fit it on one page, it also makes you look perfectly suited for the position.
Additionally, remove any positions that you held a long time ago. If youre unsure how far back your resume should go, just omit anything over 1015 years old.
Organization Of Your Resume
Present your accomplishments: it should show how well you perform rather than just presenting descriptions of previous jobs that you have held. What skills have I developed and how did I use them?
Meet the needs of employers: it should be targeted to the position. It should focus what you have to offer the employer and how you will meet their needs not just on what you want.
Major strengths: it should describe your major strengths and potential. What do I do best and what do I want to do in my next job?
Unique talent: it shows your unique talent and should be both interesting and enticing enough for the employer to want to meet you in person.
Interesting: the resume should be an interesting read rather than a challenging one.
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How Long Should A Resume Be Its Up To You
Your resume should be exactly as long as it needs to be and no longer, while also being as brief as possible without selling yourself short.
Resume length is a tricky one. If youre having trouble figuring out how long your resume should be, try focusing more on highlighting your top traits in the most reader-friendly way possible regardless of page count. If youre frustrated trying to smoosh all your experience into a single page, try a two page resume.
Most importantly, dont keep doing the same thing if its not working. Seek out new advice, try different techniques, and use all the tools at your disposal.
The Ideal Resume Length
In the end, your resume length isnt nearly as important as the resume content. If you can concisely and intelligently sum up your experience and skills in a one-page resume, dont expand to two pages just because. And, if you need two pages, you should absolutely do that. The one-page rule is becoming a thing of the pastas long as you arent filling your resume with irrelevant fluff that an employer doesnt need to know.
And, of course, weve got career coaches that can give your resume a once over and help you figure out if you need a one- or two-page resume.
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Thefacts: Recruiters Only Look At Your Resume For 6 Seconds
I know variations of this statistic are thrown around, but its for good reason. Many recruiters have a step-by-step process to fill the countless orders they receive. Briefly judging a resume by how it looks is at the top of that list.
This is one of the reasons why the length of your resume is so important. You want to catch their eye but not overwhelm them.
Now that you know the required length of a resume, are there any edits that need to be made? Do you need to add additional details to fill out one page, or are you looking to narrow it down?