Sunday, March 12, 2006

Q38: Which is better for a resume -- one page or two pages?

Via AIM: [Screename has been substituted w/ a "Q" to protect the innocent.]

Q: holy crap! it's askthebeaver! hey! I got a question...
Q: I have this friend who has a 2-page resume
Q: "what!? are you smoking crack!?" I asked him
Q: but he said that his business writing professor (he goes to a different school) said that that was the way to go
Q: what do you have to say about it?
Q: I mean, I've ***always*** heard that it was supposed to be one page
Q: here's what he said: My Business Writing professor said more people with 2 page resumes get hired as opposed to 1 page



First off, I think it depends on what's on the resume. I've heard of people who have a bunch of info, so they split their resume into two pages -- the first page depicts "experience" and the back page shows a "Summary of Publications" or something along those lines.

In general, I've heard that companies like clear, succinct, concise, one-page kind of resumes that point out the important facets of the applicant. That way, when they're skimming through oodles of apps, the applicant can snag their attention with his major accomplishments.

Though your friend's business professor claims that people w/ two-page resumes get hired as opposed to one-page, I think that's due to the actual stuff the people have done, as opposed to the length of their resume.

I recommend taking the resume to a business counselor, or perhaps the Career Office, and have the professional people there look at his resume. Alternatively, make two versions of the resume -- a single-page one with significant accomplishments, and a two-page one with more details and experiences -- and ask companies (either at a career fair or at an interview) which one they'd prefer. Perhaps you and your friend should have a contest -- if you have a one-page resume and he's got a two-page resume, see which one of you gets into more jobs. Let us know the result! :)

[Note: If this didn't answer your question, or if there are more details you'd like advice on, feel free to email/post again. :)]

4 Comments:

At 12:00 AM, Blogger Beavers, Inc. said...

Additional comment, which we found amusing:

Q: hey...
Q: do you write for counterpoint?
askthebeaver1: I used to
askthebeaver1: haha why?
Q: let's just say I'm not a fan of that publication
Q: except for the ask the beaver page...
askthebeaver1: why not?
askthebeaver1: haha really?
askthebeaver1: aww.... thanks :)
Q: I liked the "nerdy pick-up lines"
askthebeaver1: hahaha
askthebeaver1: thank you muchly
askthebeaver1: that's my own personal collection :-)
Q: awesome
Q: I think my favorite was "hey, can I be your problem set?......."

...check those pick-up lines out for yourself:
http://askthebeaver.blogspot.com/2005/01/q5-pick-up-lines_20.html

Background: Quite a few of the AskTheBeaver writers (including the ones who manage the AIM portion) are MIT folks who graduated in 2005. That said, there's also one who has never attended MIT or Wellesley. *gasp* If you're interested in writing for this blog or for the column, email askthebeaver@mit.edu :)

 
At 11:52 AM, Blogger Adi said...

Thank you for sharing.
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