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21 January, 2015 Posted by John G. Self Posted in Career Management
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ASK THE RECRUITER: Resume Length

Posted January 21st, 2015 | Author: John G. Self

What is the ideal length of a resume?  I have had several so-called experts who say it should never be more than two pages. What is your opinion?

ASK THE RECRUITER: Resume LengthThere are no hard and fast rules on length with these two exceptions:

  1. If you are new graduate with limited work experience, your resume should not exceed one page, including academic and social accomplishments during your academic career
  2. The length should be proportional in length to years of service and relevant quantifiable accomplishments

I have received resumes from some executives — people with 20 to 30 years of experience with an array of professional accomplishments — that were crammed into two pages.  This necessitated using 10 point type with minimal spacing.  In other words, the resume was all but unreadable!

Is this the first impression you want to make to a potential employer?  I didn’t know whether to crawl up on my desk with a magnifying glass or set up a telescope across the room.

You cannot cram 30 years of good work into two pages and still have an acceptable resume.  Most recruiters I know agree.

When you describe your previous employers, explain your scope of responsibility and list four or five relevant accomplishments for each position — the evidence of your potential value — you will be well into 2.5 to 3 pages at a minimum.

© 2020 John Gregory Self

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