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How long should your resume be?

magvitron

Active Member
Thread starter #1
The answer is that the length of your resume depends - on how much experience you have and what level candidate you are.

If you're an entry level candidate less is more and a page should be plenty. For more experienced candidates it's fine to have a longer resume.

Resume Length Tips:

Here are tips on how to decide on resume length from David Adams, Vice President of Learning and Development of Adecco Group North America:

How long is too long?
The length of your resume should be based on your experience and the type of job you're seeking. Some general guidelines are:

Less is more for entry level applicants.
Entry level job seekers or those transitioning between career fields should stick to a one page resume.

Other times, a little extra is OK.
/ mid-level candidates with around five to ten years of experience or anyone whose field requires technical or engineering skills, a two-page resume is common. It allows enough space to include all of the pertinent information in a readable manner. The key is to fill all, or at least three-quarters, of the second page with relevant and helpful information so that recruiter's attention is not drawn to the blank space on the second page.

Senior executives can write away
Executives or senior-level managers with a long list of accomplishments in their field - or those in an academic or scientific field whose experience includes a number of publications, licenses or patents - are the only people who should be circulating a resume that is three pages or longer. When a multiple-page resume is appropriate, an addendum can be used after page two. This allows job seekers the option of including the full document depending on the requirements of the job.
 

panic mode

Well-Known Member
#2
meh...

i never bothered to read resume that didn't fit on one page. i don't care if one has more experience, spare me the details on paper delivery job when you were 14 and focus on key things relevant to THIS position. :p
 
#3
This also depends on the country, different countries have different expectations. A one page is not going to impress anyone expecting ten, and most people in "developed" countries won't want to see more than two pages for most jobs, and will probably put most to one side after the first page.

Put yourself in the position of those having to read them, recently in the UK there was a much publicised story about over a thousand applicants for three jobs in a coffee shop, from all kinds of people with all kinds og degrees. With numbers like that, you need to make a very positive first impression.
 

Nigel Goodwin

Super Moderator
Most Helpful Member
#4
At my daughters University they were told they weren't allowed to submit CV's longer than TWO pages - if they did they were rejected and sent back to be done again.

This was somewhat of a problem for her, as she could easily fill more than two pages :D

Incidentally she's currently in the Netherlands (doing a year in industry for the last year of her Masters Degree), and one of her co-interns applied for a Phd (and got it) with a CV 'tweaked' by his Dutch mentor at the company. Melissa had a read of his, and 'tweaked' hers in the same way - and has now also got a Phd place (at Durham University).
 

jpanhalt

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
#5
In the United States, a Resume and a Curriculum Vitae (CV) are distinctly different animals.

Resume's can be quite short as described above. A curriculum vitae will be required frequently for professional positions. It is expected to be substantially longer. Here is a typical outline for what is expected: http://www.electro-tech-online.com/custompdfs/2013/03/CVOutline.pdf The outline is even longer than many Resume's.

If one is applying for a job at an employment office and dealing with functionaries, it is probably reasonable to assume that a short resume is expected. In other situations, it is OK simply to ask whether a short resume or CV is wanted. I can't see why anyone would not do that, if they were unsure. If you are concerned that a potential employer would be put off by asking that question, ask yourself whether that is the sort of place you want to work.

John
 

Nigel Goodwin

Super Moderator
Most Helpful Member
#6
In the United States, a Resume and a Curriculum Vitae (CV) are distinctly different animals.

Resume's can be quite short as described above. A curriculum vitae will be required frequently for professional positions. It is expected to be substantially longer. Here is a typical outline for what is expected: http://www.electro-tech-online.com/custompdfs/2013/03/CVOutline.pdf The outline is even longer than many Resume's.
It could well be counter productive - I was talking to an old retired guy a few years back - he had a degree in Chemistry, and later a degree in Business Administration (or something like that), and one of his jobs was selecting applicants for jobs where he worked.

His first 'filter' was to scan the University their degree was from, and discard any he hadn't heard of!!.

With the high number of applicants for most jobs these days reading hundreds (if not thousands) of CV's in tens of pages just isn't going to happen.
 

jpanhalt

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
#7
His first 'filter' was to scan the University their degree was from, and discard any he hadn't heard of!!.
That gentleman sounds like he was more than a bit prejudiced and not terribly competent in his job. I would not allow such screening based on the reviewer's ignorance in my department. Of course, maybe he really did know the names by which any college or university of merit in the world went by.

With the high number of applicants for most jobs these days reading hundreds (if not thousands) of CV's in tens of pages just isn't going to happen.
As I said, it is important to determine whether a CV or Resume is wanted. Lengthy CV's are rarely read in their entirety during initial screening. In general, professional qualifications are reviewed first, then track record and awards. Publications and patents,which may take up a large part of the CV, are reviewed later after the field has been narrowed. Some places will ask that publications and professional references be submitted at a later time upon request. In my experience, professional references are rarely included in CV's, but are frequently included in Resume's. There is a difference between a CV and a Resume, at least in my experience in the US. It is a small task to find out which is wanted, and doing so can avoid making a mistake.

John
 

Nigel Goodwin

Super Moderator
Most Helpful Member
#8
That gentleman sounds like he was more than a bit prejudiced and not terribly competent in his job. I would not allow such screening based on the reviewer's ignorance in my department. Of course, maybe he really did know the names by which any college or university of merit in the world went by.
Most people do :D

The chances are that the best applicants come from the best Uni's, which would be ones every one has heard of.

But it's a simple (and effective) way of whittling a massive list down to manageable proportions.

A friends son applied for a job as an apprentice electrician with the local council, and the application stated at the top to 'fill out in block capitals using a black ballpoint pen' - the initial filtering threw out all application forms that didn't meet those criteria.
 
#10
It can be as long as you want BUT it should be easily divisible in 2 parts. First page should list your skills, relevant experience, and your edu degrees with institute.
The second part must be a list of all your projects you are proud of.
 

WTP Pepper

Active Member
#11
Having done recruitment in my company on and off for many years, I came across one that caught my eye.
It was a career, skills and training CV on two pages. It referenced a second CV should I want to see a few more details of what had been summarised.
I didn't have to plough through pages to find what I wanted.
He got the job initially in my dept. I have told him how it impressed me from the first word.

Or alternatively bin 50% of all CVs received to weed out those are just unlucky in their application. :)

Tip. Never ever print on both sides af a piece of A4. Most printers will have a strike through making both sides difficult to read.

The worst I ever saw was 40 pages full of 'I did' type quotes....BIN.
 
#12
I think the first concern should not be length but relevance. I have just sorted through a large pile of applications for an entry grade position and was stunned by how many people simply sent their standard resume rather than trying to tailor it to the position. Even within my shortlist of ten some have not put in very much effort which is disappointing.
 
#13
No more than one page. You want enough to get them interested, but not bore them with minutia. I always trim and aim my resume at the position I am seeking. Leave off the irrelevant and make it apply as much to the position as possible. Highlight special skills and include basic necessities too. The resume is a fishing pole, so use your pole wisely and you will reel in a great job.

Wheelchair Bob
 

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