Resumes need to be clear and concise. Usually, this means keeping a resume to around one page.
However, there are situations where a multipage resume is actually quite useful. In particular, professionals with decades of experience should not skip over their early years just to keep it to one page.
A long work history over multiple pages
Including an entire work history in your resume helps you build credibility with a potential employer. If you’ve had a career that has lasted more than 20 years, for instance, including your entire work history shows your career progression and accomplishments.
When writing out a work history, you don’t have to include a lot of detail for accomplishments earlier in your career, but you should include any supervisory experience and any information on the scope of your job duties. For instance, if your job was in distribution, you should include the square footage of the facilities where you worked.
Concerns for resumes of any length
Whether your resume is one page or four, there are several key concerns that should be addressed.
A summary section is a good way to start a resume as it distills who you are as a professional and what you have accomplished in your career. Include a few succinct and impactful statements that describe your skills and what you will bring to the table for the potential employer. This section, as with all sections of your resume, should be customized each time you apply to a job.
Located just below your summary section, an achievements section lets a potential employer know what you have accomplished in your career, which suggests what you can do for them. List your accomplishments in bullet form, including the company and job title you held when you accomplished each item. Describe accomplishments that can be measured objectively. For instance, saying you “cut requisition costs by 20 percent, saving the company $3,800 for the fiscal year” is much better than “improved warehouse efficiency.”
Employers will feel more comfortable hiring you if they can visualize your accomplishments using hard numbers and specifics. They should also be able to verify these specific accomplishments through your professional references.
Clearly, it’s essential to be honest on a resume and in your accomplishments section in particular. Hiring managers know there is a difference between making the most of your experience and exaggerating or falsifying it.
In your education section, include all information related to any degrees or certifications you have earned, such as the college or university, certifying organization, dates, and precise degree or certificate.
For all of these sections, it’s important to make your words count. Avoid large paragraphs and use bullets instead. Resumes are often scanned by hiring managers, so be sure to incorporate keywords and phrases associated with your line of work.
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