How Long Can Your CV Be? - AJIRA PLUS+

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How Long Can Your CV Be?

This is a very common question as many job applicants don’t know what the length of a standard CV should be, especially if you don’t have much to write or have too much to write.

A lot of people have concentrated on the old rule that a CV can only be one page, but it no longer holds true.

Times have changed. Two-page CVs are common now, so if you have been agonizing over how to stick to one page, agonize no longer.

There is one big exception to this, though, and that’s if you only have a few years of experience. If that’s you, stick to one page. It looks a little silly to see someone two years out of school with a two-page CV; it’s rarely needed, and you’ll generally come across as a little self-important or unable to edit.

I also see a lot of three-page CVs, but I’ve yet to be convinced that anyone is in a situation where they need a third page. I’m not going to reject someone because they use three pages, but I’m also not sure I’ve ever seen anyone I wanted to hire who used a third page. I suspect there’s a correlation between hire ability and the ability to concisely distill your accomplishments down to what matters.

If you’re trying to figure out how to get rid of your third page, here are some things to take out:
That long listing of skills; cut it down to the essentials, lengthy descriptions of stuff you did 20 years ago; your more recent accomplishments are better.

Now, these rules aren’t automatic deal-breakers. If anyone is rejecting candidates because of a CV that’s a page longer than they’d prefer, that person probably isn’t very good at hiring. But length does play into the overall perception of you as a candidate as it portrays things such as you can convey essential knowledge quickly and you know what is and isn’t essential.

And there’s another reason length matters: The longer your CV is, the less likely an employer is to see the parts you want them to see.

The initial scan of your resume is about 20 seconds do you want that divided among three pages, or do you want it focused on the most important things you want to convey? Short and concise means that employers are more likely to read the parts you most care about.

In case you have also been confused about the length of your CV now go edit it and remain with the essentials.