How long your resume should be: tips for every stage of your career
How many pages a resume should be can be a tricky question to answer. The answer depends on your stage in your career and the type of position you are applying for. This blog post will give you tips for every stage of your career!
How long a resume should be when…
You have a few years of experience
If you are a young graduate or have only a few years of experience, your resume should be one to two pages long. This is because you will not have as much experience to include as someone who has been working for many years. The key is to focus on quality over quantity. Include your most relevant experiences and skills, and omit any irrelevant information.
If you don’t have enough work experience, like when you apply for your first job, include your education, volunteer work, and other activities that show off your skills. For example, if you are a recent graduate, you can list your coursework, internships, and jobs you’ve had during school. If you have any awards or certificates, be sure to include those too.
You have 5 to 10 years of experience
If you’re like most people, you probably spent your early career years just trying to survive. You were working long hours, taking on extra assignments, and generally just putting your head down and grinding it out. But now that you’ve got a few years of experience, it’s time to start thinking about your resume. After all, you’re not an early-career student anymore – you’re a seasoned professional. So, a one or two-page resume should suffice. But if you have a more extensive professional history, you may need up to three or even four pages.
As far as content goes, an early-career resume may be all about potential and what you hope to achieve. But a mid-career resume should focus on what you’ve already accomplished rather than simply listing your job duties. However, it should also include more detail about your skills and experience. Use quantifiable metrics whenever possible to demonstrate the impact of your work, and make sure to include any significant awards or recognition you’ve received. You can also ditch the minimalist approach and add some personality to your resume. After all, you’re not a dull corporate drone – you’re a dynamic professional with a lot to offer. So don’t be afraid to show off!
You have 10 years+ of experience
If you’re like most people, you probably haven’t spent much time thinking about your resume since you first wrote it. But if you’ve been in the workforce for ten years or more, your resume should be noticeably different from the one you used to land your first job. So here are a few things to remember when updating your resume for a mid-career position.
First, your resume should be at least two pages long, but try to keep it to three pages. Even if you have much experience, your resume should be concise. Hiring managers don’t want to wade through a novel-length CV.
Second, don’t assume that your experience speaks for itself. Yes, employers may be impressed by your long tenure. However, they’ll also want to see that you’ve continued to develop professionally. Third, use industry-specific language. Make sure you’re using the correct jargon for your field so hiring managers can see that you’re an expert in your area.
Finally, tailor it to the job you’re applying for. Like with any other resume, ensure you’re tailoring your 10+ years of experience resume to the specific job you’re applying for. Show them why you’re the perfect candidate for the role by highlighting relevant skills and experience.
By following these tips, you can make sure your 10+ years of experience resume is up to par – and help you land the job you want
You apply for an executive role
Suppose you’re applying for an executive role. In that case, your resume should be long enough to show that you’re qualified for the job – but not so long that it’ll bore the hiring manager. After all, even executives have only so much attention span. So how long should an executive resume be? Ideally, two to three pages should suffice.
As for the content, you should highlight your leadership experience and accomplishments to demonstrate your ability to manage and motivate others. This could include details on your financial acumen, any business turnarounds or expansions you have overseen, and any awards or recognition you have received for your work.
In contrast, non-executive resumes should focus more on your contribution to projects and businesses. Here, you can provide specific examples of how you have added value, such as increasing sales or improving efficiency. No matter what role you are applying for, make sure you’re using quality paper and a professional-looking font. No need to get too fancy – remember that first impressions count.
You want to change your career
If you’re looking to change your career, the question of how long your resume should be is tricky. On the one hand, you want to highlight your experience and qualifications to demonstrate that you’re qualified for the new position. But, on the other hand, you don’t want your resume to be so long that it becomes tedious to read.
Remember that your resume is meant to be a snapshot of your experience and qualifications, not an exhaustive list of everything you’ve ever done. So if you have much experience in your old field, you may need to be selective about what goes on your new resume. For example, if you’re making a significant career change, keeping your resume on the shorter side is generally advisable. This way, you can focus on highlighting the skills and experiences most relevant to the new position.
On the other hand, if you’re starting from scratch in a new field, you’ll need to make sure your resume paints a clear picture of your skills and abilities. The best rule of thumb is to keep your resume as concise and focused as possible. This will help ensure that it effectively communicates what you have to offer in your new career.
You are looking for a job after a long period of unemployment
If you’ve been out of the workforce for a while, you might be wondering how to make your resume stand out. After all, employers are looking for candidates with experience, and you may not have much to show for the past few years. However, there’s no need to panic – there are a few simple ways to make your resume more impressive.
First, keep your resume short and sweet – two pages should be plenty. Secondly, focus on your skills and accomplishments rather than job titles or dates. Instead of listing your work history chronologically, highlight the skills and qualities that make you a great candidate. Finally, don’t be afraid to include volunteer work or other relevant activities. These can show that you’re motivated and capable, even if you haven’t been paid for them. With these tips in mind, you’re sure to create a winning resume to help you get back into the workforce.
So, how long your resume should be? When should your resume be two pages? It depends! But hopefully, this guide has given you a good idea of what to aim for. If you’re applying for a position that doesn’t require much experience, keep your resume to one page. However, if you have more experience or are targeting a job that requires longer tenure, then feel free to go up to two pages or more. Make sure everything is concise and easy to read – no one wants to slog through a three-page resume!
And remember, constantly tailor your resume to the position you are applying for – if they ask for a one-page resume, send them a one-page resume! How long have you been using the wrong length of a resume? Let us know in the comments.
Featured image: Photo by Markus Winkler on Unsplash