How to Determine How Long Your Resume Should Be

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It wasn’t long ago that most job seekers were told their resumes should be one page. No more, no less. If it went over to two pages, the document was destined for the rejection pile.

Thankfully, times have changed. Today, there’s a little more flexibility when it comes to resume length. That said, for your particular situation, the best resume length depends on a number of factors, including experience level and accomplishments. For instance:

  • If you have fewer than 10 years of experience, or you’re making a big switch in terms of career field, then a one-page resume is most appropriate.
  • If, however, you have extensive experience in your field and a steady career progression to demonstrate it, then opt for a resume that’s two pages long. This will give you the space you need to discuss your background in a way that’s easy-to-scan – without trying to cram details onto one page.
  • The only scenario where sending a three-page+ resume makes sense is if you are an executive-level professional or in senior management with a long track record of titles and accomplishments.

To help you create a resume that’s the best length for your background, here are some tips to keep in mind during the process:

Your resume is a marketing document.

You should only be giving your career highlights, not offering a deep dive into every move you’ve made over the years. Remember too that hiring managers aren’t deciding whom to hire based on resumes, only those they want to bring in for an interview.

It should focus on your strengths.

Hiring managers only spend a few seconds reading through each resume they receive. It’s therefore important to showcase your strongest selling points and format your resume in a way that’s easy to scan. Don’t dilute it with unnecessary minutiae about your career history.

Don’t be afraid to get help from a trusted source.

If you’re having trouble paring down your resume and fitting it onto one or two pages, ask for help from a trusted family member, friend or colleague. Give them both your resume and the job description so they can review both and offer editing advice. A fresh pair of eyes can help you focus in on the vital components of your background and eliminate the unneeded ones, all so you can put your best foot forward.

Looking for additional help with the resume-writing process?

Check out our website for resume templates to inspire you – or connect with our team today for help creating a professionally polished resume. Call 832.930.7378 with questions, to learn more, or get started.