Once you’ve been in the workforce for several years, you might find that your one-page resume format is bursting at the seams. Is one or two page resume best? While a one-page resume is desirable in the sense that a hiring manager or recruiter is likelier to read it all, remember that an applicant tracking system doesn’t care how long your resume is. One common rule of thumb is that each resume page should be able to contain 10 years of experience. If your one-page resume has grown cluttered, it’s time to consider using a different resume format. But before you do, make sure that you keep these three things in mind.
Experience worthy of a 2 page resume
According to a recruiter writing for Forbes, “if I’m going to read a resume that’s more than one page, it better tell a good story about what you bring to the table.” You should not use a two-page resume if the content on your second page does not extend more than halfway down the second page. That calls for a re-formatting, not an additional page. Margins, typefaces, layout, and editing could all bring your resume back to one well-formatted page.
Every piece of information on a resume should be relevant, because hiring managers and recruiters spend fewer than 10 seconds reviewing each resume. If you attempt to pad your resume with fluff and inconsequential details, you run the risk of that information being read while some truly important information gets passed over.
Edit out the unnecessary fluff by homing in on what really matters. Paste your ATS resume and the job description in to the Jobscan resume optimization tool below to see which skills, keywords, and experience are actually important to the job for which you’re applying.
You do not have to have a complete contact information section on the second page of your resume that’s identical to the one on the first page. In fact, it’s better not to do that—not only do those sections typically take up quite a bit of space, but at first glance a hiring manager could believe you mistakenly submitted a duplicate first page.
At minimum, your second page needs to include a footer with your full name and a page number. If you have a common name, it would be wise to also include further identifying information (such as your email address). This will keep your resume from getting mixed up with others when printed. If using a two-page resume, you should also include a footer on the first page containing the word “continued.” You do not need to specify a page number on the first page.
Your work experience should make up the bulk of your first resume page. If your education history contains a large number of degrees or certifications, consider putting it on the second page so that your work experience section is not pushed too far down the first page. The second page of your resume is the ideal location for sections such as your volunteer work or professional affiliations.
It is acceptable for a given section to have information on more than one page—for example, your work experience section might have entries on both pages. But it’s important that you don’t break up individual entries within a given section.
A one-page resume has certain advantages (for example, they are easiest in situations such as job fairs), but a two-page resume is preferred when your experience no longer comfortably fits onto one page or it’s the standard in your industry or country. Remember that in order to be quickly and easily read by the human eye, a resume needs to have a logical flow and plenty of white space. When moving from a one-page resume format to a two-page format, take the time to make the most of your second page.
Check out Jobscan’s ATS-friendly resume templates. The “Executive” section offers 2 page resume templates.