When it comes to resume length, for years the rule of thumb was not to exceed one page. Living in a world with short attention spans that is dominated by texting and Twitter, however, changes the rules. Since the resume has taken the place of the initial interview, the trend is toward two-page resumes. Because of this, choosing the right length and getting your resume noticed is what lands more job interviews.
Limiting your resume to one page is often optimal if you are a recent college graduate or are seeking an entry–level position. If any of the following situations apply, you should use a one-word resume:
A one-page resume that is packed with information is less prudent than a two-page resume that is well organized and easy to read. If you are a recent graduate or are seeking an entry-level position, you may prepare a two-page resume as long as it is relevant and persuasive. Consider a two-page resume if the following reasons are applicable:
In reality, most resumes are not read in their entirety regardless of the length. While you must consider the length, focus on quality of the content. Recruiters scan your resume for less than one minute looking for specifics (i.e., your level of education, your job title, where and for long you have worked and your skill set). Therefore, strive for readability. Concise writing, good organization and brief lists with bullet points are easily skimmed.
Whether you prepare a one- or two-page resume, follow traditional resume formatting, regardless of the resume layout you choose. Focus on the top half of the first page of your resume, and create a strong impact “above the fold.” If you are submitting a two-page resume, make sure you have two pages of pertinent information.
If you find yourself cramming information on the page, expanding margins or reducing font size, use a two-page resume if it applies rather than creating a visibly unappealing one-page resume. However, never include superfluous information to stretch your resume to two pages. In resume writing, less is more. Therefore, edit, edit and edit until your resume is as close to perfect as possible.
Hiring managers read the details of your resume, so your resume is ready when it speaks articulately for you. Whatever your resume length, it needs to stay clear and compelling. Make your resume distinctive to see an impressive response rate in obtaining face-to-face interviews.