Does A Resume Have To Be One Page
No, a resume doesnt have to be one page. If you have over 10 years of relevant experience and need extra space to showcase the depth of your qualifications, then a two page resume is acceptable.
Specifically, if youre applying for senior-level positions, it might be necessary to extend your resume to a second page in order to give employers a full picture of your qualifications.
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.
Can I Include References Without Their Permission
No way! Youre buying a one-way ticket to unemployment hell if you blindside former employers by listing them as references on a resume without even checking with them first.
A job search is a process, and you cant just skip a bunch of steps. If you used to be Bill and Melinda Gates nanny, you cant just put their private contact info on your resume without getting their permission first.
If you need character references on a resume, reach out to your most promising prospects. How do you ask someone to be your reference? Explain what youre up to, what kind of job youre seeking and why you need a reference. If you used to work for Warren Buffett, hes probably busy earning another $1 billion today, but he might have five minutes to dash off a note saying you were a great bookkeeper.
Speaking of which, instead of seeking permission to publish their contact info, why not ask former employers for a short testimonial about what an awesome employee you were? You can probably get far more mileage from a professional reference letter than from a phone number that Elon Musk doesnt answer anyway.
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Make Your Name Smaller
Many people choose to write their name across the top of their resume in 13940292 pt font. We get it its dramatic, eye-catching, etc., etc., but its a total waste of space.
Its plenty attention-grabbing to write your name in bold, maybe one or two font sizes larger than the rest of your resume. Recruiters know they can find your name at the top of the page, so you dont need to make it so obvious for them.
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.
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Secret Things Professional Resume Writers Do
- Follow best practices. If youre still struggling to focus your resume and make things fit, here are 20 tips to help you write a great resume.
- Cut the early years completely. Un-dating your qualifications and not listing the first several roles held saves space. It can also remove 10 years from your age.
- Use formatting to create space. Changing the font, font size, line spacing, and margins can all reduce the length of your resume. Adjusting the titling, letter spacing, and paragraph spacing can also make a difference.
- Use a professional resume writers skills. They have the advantage of knowing what employers want to see and offer several benefits.
Case Study: Mias Three Page Research Assistant Resume
Mia has been working in immunology for many years.
From her undergraduate work to her current postdoctoral work Her drive to make a difference in the world has produced publications, presentations, and awards.
In her pursuit of postdoctoral research, demonstrating her expertise in the field is an absolute must. There are also expectations of an academic resume to put simply, having the correct style and streamlining your design.
To produce a resume to satisfy these conditions as well as discussing her previous work, a three-page resume was needed.
So far with all the case studies, have you noticed any similarities?
Firstly, theyre modern resumes which stand out. Above all, its the resume design and the way it highlights key information such as your certifications and different types of skills by using appropriate visual aspects. This is what makes them so compelling for the hiring manager.
Chances are, the recruiters at your company arent used to seeing a modern resume like this. So, making an impression and getting your foot in the door isnt difficult.
If youre unsure what to write and trying to cope with writers block, Enhancv makes the entire resume building process easier for you.
When youre using any of these proven examples, you have a resume in front of you thats gotten someone hired in the most competitive spaces. More importantly, they could just be like you.
These resume templates are free.
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How Far Back Should A Resume Go
Generally, you should not go back further than 20 years on your resume. Sometimes, even 15 years.
Imagine that you are applying to a job as a VP of Finance. Your time working at McDonalds 25 years ago will not help your resume at all.
It is great that you did it, but it wont be relevant.
Consider also the existence of recency bias.
A hiring manager will favor your rival if you present virtually identical resumes if they list their achievements more recently.
If you list your big wins as 20 years ago, whereas they list the same in the last 2 years, the latter will be preferred.
Also, if you go back over 20 years, you are talking about your past self. Experience from further back than this will not be considered relevant.
It says little of you today.
So how far should a resume go back?
It often depends on your resume length. Need to cut back on space? Go with 15 years. Need to add space? Go with 20 years.
Your main concern here is making it appear that you are not leaning on your past selfs accolades, but just showing your track record as you continue to achieve great things.
Top Tip: For any additional relevant experience that is older than 15-20 yeas, you can add them in a section called Additional Experience. Include only one line per experience.
Leave Out References Available Upon Request
Many people will use an entire line to write this phrase. If youre struggling to fit your resume to a page, those two lines are valuable real estate.
If an employer wants references, theyll request them. Its rare for an applicant not to have a single reference available, so dont waste precious resume space with this phrase.
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First Show Relevant Experience And Skills
Keep the content of your resume relevant to the job description. Read through the job requirements to understand the best skills, experiences and work history that will boost your chances of getting the role. Before submitting your resume, revise it to remove any element that does not support your application.
Other Tips For Writing The Perfect Resume
When it comes to showcasing your professional experience and landing job interviews for the career of your dreams, having a resume that is the right length is key. Knowing what to include in your resume can help make your job search all the easier and it can prevent your resume from ending up in the slush pile.
If youre still not sure how to craft the best resume after reading these tips, consider hiring a professional resume writer. While you should avoid resume writing services, as these companies tend to charge you on a monthly basis rather than just a one-time fee, a resume writer can help you create a resume that showcases all of your skills, experiences, and talents and that is the right length for the job you want to land.
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Should You List Incomplete Degree On Resume
If you have no other education or job training, leave the unfinished degree on your resume. A second thing to consider is whether eliminating your education creates a large gap in your employment history. If so, then include the specific years you attended. If so, you should indicate that on your resume.
When Should Your Resume Be Three Pages
Your resume should rarely be three pages or more. Most of the information for a three-page resume is better suited for a LinkedIn profile or a comprehensive CV.
âThough we generally advise against a resume length beyond two pages, sometimes itâs necessary,â says Jennifer. âSome professions and industries have a different set of standards when it comes to resumes and therefore require more information.â
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Combine Multiple Related Bullet Points Into One Bullet Point
If you have multiple lines on the same subject within your job experience, you can often combine the statements into one.
Example: Optimize your space by combining functions
Ensured our marketing had a positive ROI.
Utilized marketing tools to ensure maximum ROI.
Managed the marketing team to ensure smooth and efficient projects were deployed.
Implemented and managed a marketing campaign with extensive A/B testing to achieve a 190% ROI.
The three bullets can easily be grouped together to form a statement thatâs sure to impress an employer. If you have paragraphs, you should turn those into bullet points as well.
Including An Awards Section On A Resume
An awards section can include many different things including school awards, work awards, online achievements, or records from other places. Each award should take up a single bulleted line in this section, with no more than five lines listed.
School awards are examples of how to make a resume if you never had a job as these are great ways to fill in space on a resume. These show that a student was dedicated in a certain area and was recognized for it.
Awards for things such as math league, honors, literary achievements, sports or club competitions, and many others can prove that this student has gone above and beyond.
Employers want to see applicants with a well-rounded history, and including an awards section will allow you to showcase this.
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Using Different Font Types And Sizes To Fill Blank Space On A Resume
Resumes need to follow certain rules regarding font type and size, otherwise they come across as unprofessional.
If you are truly at a loss of how to fill space efficiently on a resume, however, you might try changing the default font to something larger and more suitable.
The best resume fonts to use are Times New Roman, Cambria, Georgia, and Calibri.
Out of these, Georgia is just slightly larger than the rest, making it a good trick to helping your resume reach the one-page length minimum.
Size 11 is the recommended font size for a resume, though up to size 12 is acceptable.
You do not want it to be blatantly obvious that you are manipulating the font to expand your resume length, so be careful when utilizing this technique.
Section headers should be a bit larger than the body text on a resume, so you can enlarge these if they arent already.
The contact information section at the top does not follow the same rules as the body either, so you could get away with making your name or phone number a bit larger as well.
Including skills and experiences is always a better option to fill out a resume when possible, but adjusting your font is a good trick in a pinch.
How Many Pages Should A Resume Be: The Golden Rule
If you have been in the workforce for a number of years, you’re entitled to a maximum of two full pages of resume real estate. This rule applies to most senior professionals, whether you’ve been in the workforce for seven years or 27 years.
The reality is that most recruiters spend less than 10 seconds reviewing a resume before deciding whether the applicant should receive further consideration. With so little time to make the right impression, it’s important to present a succinct document that highlights the recent and more relevant parts of your professional experience, skills, and education.
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Whats The Ideal Length For A College Application Resume
Most people applying for college need a one-page resume. Be sure to include specific details so you can highlight your best and most relevant achievements. Use more pages if you need to list extracurricular activities, academic awards, leadership positions and other things that can boost your chances of getting admission.
Why Are There So Many Opinions About Resume Length
Unfortunately, theres no best answer.
The hiring landscape has changed considerably in recent years. Not even 20 years ago, keeping your resume down to one page was both a strategic and cost-effective move .
Going even further back in time youll read that keeping your resume to a single page is your best option.
Two pages are also acceptable.
But, anything longer makes it too difficult for employers to go through.
Today, these worries are less pronounced. In fact, theres a growing trend of recruiters preferring two-page resumes over single-page ones.
According to a study by ResumeGo, its found that hiring managers are 2.3 times more prone to select a two-page resume format over the one-page resumes. No matter what the candidates professional level is, it doesnt make a big difference.
So why do people still argue for a one-page resume?
In one word: relevance.
Every resume has an audience. But, not everyone will have the same opinion.
And, thats why its difficult to assume what the ideal resume length is.
Some recruiters and hiring managers will follow the one-page rule to the letter while others will think the rule is useless. To help overcome this difficulty, its best to research the hiring practices of the organization youre applying to and see the common traits associated with page lengths.
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How To Deal With Professional References
Having said all that, great professional references could be the secret sauce that seals the deal. If you were a speechwriter for President Barack Obama, hopefully that would appear somewhere in your employment history, and possibly in your summary. But if your friend Barack has offered to vouch for you to future employers, think twice before you include his private email and personal cellphone on your public resume.
You could include this info in a separate attachment, or even as part of your cover letter. But does it belong in your public resume? Most experts would say no, and Barack Obama would probably agree.
How Long Should Your Resume Be Key Takeaways
Truth is, theres no perfect answer. There are too many factors to be considered to allow for a simple determination. Nonetheless, the strategies and topics discussed will help you in making the decision.
Before submitting your resume, use the following checklist summarised from everything in this guide:
- Ive looked at the typical traits of one page, two page, and three + page resume
- Ive answered the who, why, what, and how questions of a resume
- Ive ensured all of my experience is specific, relevant, and measured
- Ive determined the significance of each item included on my resume and believe removing any section would negatively affect my chances of being hired
- Ive consulted other successful resumes to see how others have crafted their resumes for inspiration
- Ive used Enhancvs builder to present all of this information in a sleek way and have capitalized on their unique sections to stand out
If youve followed these steps, chances are you have the perfect resume length for you.
As weve learned from Gals case study, sometimes rules-of-thumb do not fit your situation. Daniels story shows us that sticking to one page isnt always an advantage, and Mia shows us that in some cases, the recommended length is the best length.
As long as youve done the research and followed this guide, there is no right or wrong answer.
Do you agree with our tips? How long do you prefer your resume to be? Share your own insights in the comments below.
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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.