Job Search Tips, Tricks And Treats
How Long Do Your College Honors Matter?

1 Page Resume Or 2

Tis the season for folks to be thinking about making a job change and if one believes any of the recent hiring surveys there will (thankfully) be a few more jobs to be had.

The flip side is other surveys show that at least in spirit, most people are looking for a new company to call their home away from home.

So more jobs and even more competition.

In January I am scheduled to speak at seven events about job search, networking and LinkedIn.

So let’s talk about resumes.

I would rather not.

I hate ‘em.

But I am always asked about them and they are at the moment still the best tool for most job seekers and companies. I do not want to debate that part.

I want to debate something that bothers me even more...

1 page resume or 2? Or in some cases 3?

How long should a resume be is as long short as it takes for you to show an employer why they should interview and ultimately hire you.

Too vague for you?

Sure.

But the answer depends on a lot of variables including:

Years of experience

  • Entry level
  • College graduate
  • Middle Manager
  • Executive

Industry:

  • A marketing resume may/will likely be more interactive than a software programmer and different than a second shift call center representative

So there is no one answer. Period.

Wait, maybe there is an answer:

Use common sense and if you are in short supply, well then we have another blog post to write.

Here is an example...

This question “Hi Recruiters! What's your take on a two-page resume?” was asked on our discussion page on LinkedIn.

Here was my reply:

Here is what I tell the college kids I speak to when doing job search, networking and LinkedIn sessions:

    • Tell me why you should be hired

    • Tell me we why you over someone else

    • Tell me what is unique about your skill set and experience

    • This is a competition, why you

If that is one page or two, fine.

I graduated from college with a barely 1 page resume and that was a stretch. I used larger font to help. I had been very active on campus but because I paid for most of my costs I was a bartender and there are not many ways to spin that experience.

I am seeing college kids who have the on campus experience I had plus three internships with legitimate business experience.

That could be a two page resume.

Look, we have all seen the surveys about how much time resumes are actually getting, if any. One page or two is a silly question.

We should be teaching students that art of networking so that when they graduate and regardless of the length of their document they have advocates who get it to decision makers.

For sure one lesson we learned during the Great Recession is you can have the coolest, best prepared and most optimized resume but if it is one of many or a lot your odds of it being seen are slim.

Another thing to talk about in a future post is that many companies are using some sort of an applicant tracking system and in the digital sense we may not know how long the resume actually is.

So my answer is… it depends.

I am guessing this did not help much.

What is your answer?

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