Is a two page CV/Resume enough?

Monday, September 29th, 2008 - CV Writing, Job Application, resume writing

Bruce asks: For years, I’ve read and heard that your resume should be no more than 2 pages long and I can remember when I had a one page resume. Recently, I’ve been encouraged to expand my resume beyond two pages. I trust this individual’s opinion and his reasoning that I can’t do justice to my competencies or accomplishments in two pages certainly makes sense. I’m considering keeping my two page resume for initial contacts, but developing and expanded version to share once a “relationship” is initiated. I would appreciate your input and suggestions.

In answer:
The answer is – make it as long as you want: half a page, 100 pages, its your CV/Resume.

Only thing is: the recruiter/HR professional reading it will have decided if you are the right person for the job in the first half page of your CV/Resume, having already read the one page of your Cover Letter. That might seem cruel, but its the truth.

If you think you need more time to say how great you are, then consider using a 2page CV/Resume as an intro, and then taking along a full Curriculum Vitae or portfolio to the interview, or create one online which you can refer to in your Cover Letter.

Your friend is probably right – but applying for a specific job, is everything in your Curriculum Vitae or portfolio needed against the five specific job competencies you are applying for? One could almost question whether you needed a CV/Resume, if you wrote a good enough Cover Letter.

In summary, I think you do need two products: a Curriculum Vitae or portfolio; and then a focused Cover Letter and CV/Resume against the specific job application.

Good Luck!
Bruce says: Thank you for your response. Your insights have confirmed my conclusions, I really like the idea of building a longer CV to take to the interview or mention in my cover letter. I’ve just started building an online CV on a site called VisualCV. Thanks again, I appreciate your input


No problems! Re a visual CV/Resume, have a look at my blog entry on them. They are often too generic for a specific job application. Your career suggests a portfolio approach would work best

Best Regards,

Ian McA

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