New research finds that the idea that we should stick to a one-page resume is a myth. A two page resume increases your chances of being hired.
Many people believe that a resume has to be a one pager. It’s been said time and time again, but is it true? Does your resume have to fit on one page? Not only does your resume not have to fit on a single page, sending out a one page-resume can actually reduce your chances of getting the job according to new research.
Zety, an online resume maker company, conducted an analysis of 670,000 documents to find out what’s working and what isn’t for resumes in 2021. They found that the median resume length is 406 words and that most candidates stick to one page.
They also found that this is not the best strategy. Recruiters are statistically 1.4 times more likely to choose a candidate with a two-page resume for an entry-level position, and 2.9 times more likely to choose a candidate with a two-page resume for a management job.
Furthermore, 77% of employers said that seasoned professionals come across as less experienced with a one-page resume.
Zety concludes: “in 2021, a two-page resume will increase your chances of landing an interview. This is especially true if you’ve got lots of experience. Recruiters prefer it, and this way you’ll stay ahead of the competition.”
Don’t make your resume longer than two pages
Note, however, that a resume should never be longer than two pages.
Just because it increases chances of getting a job, however, doesn’t mean everyone agrees that a resume should be two pages.
In an interview with CNBC Carter Cast, a professor at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management and the former CEO of Walmart.com, said “If you’ve been working for less than five years, your resume should only be one page and if you’ve worked for 10 years, it shouldn’t be longer than two pages.”
He added, “When I receive a seven or eight page resume, I groan,” he says. “If you submit a big document like that, the chances that it’s actually going to be read by someone are very low.”
Clearly he’s not a fan of two pages for less experienced applicants, and you can’t please everyone. But the two pager increases your chances on average, according to this study, so hedge your bets accordingly. Keep your resume between one and two pages, depending on your experience. Don’t go over two pages, and don’t be afraid to include all relevant experience or force yourself to cut important information because you think that a shorter document is better.