Can a Resume Be Two Pages? Here’s What Hiring Managers in 2024 Say

Not sure if you should use a 2-page resume? Here’s everything you need to know about when a 2-page resume is better and how to write one.

6 months ago   •   5 min read

By Rohan Mahtani
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There’s a lot of weird, outdated, and just plain bad advice out there when it comes to resume writing — so much so that it can be difficult to find a definitive answer to even the simplest questions. For example: Should resumes only ever be one page, or is two pages okay?

The truth is, there’s no “one size fits all” resume … literally. While most common resume advice states that you should limit your resume to a single page, that isn’t always the case. Here’s some no-nonsense advice straight from recruiters on when it’s okay to let your resume grow — and when you should stick to the one-page rule.

How to keep your resume to 1-2 pages
How to keep your resume to 1-2 pages

Is a 2-page resume okay?

Can a resume be two pages long? Yes! Today’s job market is more lenient about the one-page resume rule than in the past.

Should it be? Well, that’s a much longer answer. In general, a two-page resume should be the exception rather than the rule. Here’s how to know if your resume is worth making an exception for.

In the USA, recruiters typically spend just 15-30 seconds per resume. This means that whether your resume is one or two pages, you need to make your key qualifications and achievements stand out quickly.

When you should write a 2-page resume

You might need a two-page resume if:

  • You’re a mid-level hire or above. A two-page resume is almost always preferred for senior level, C-suite, and executive roles and may be appropriate for some mid-level roles.
  • You have 10+ years of relevant experience in your field.
  • You have a specialized skill set or extensive (relevant) experience in your field.
  • You have a long list of publications, patents, or other exceptional qualifications.
  • You’ve done a lot of freelance or contract work and want to showcase a long list of past projects or clients.
  • You’re located in a country where longer resumes are preferred. In the UK and Australia, for example, it’s standard to use CVs that are two or even three pages long.

If you're unsure about a two-page resume, upload your resume to the tool below. It'll scan your resume and offer personalized advice on whether a two-page format suits your specific circumstances, providing valuable insights for your decision-making.

When you should write a 1-page resume

You should stick to a one-page resume if:

  • You’re a student, recent graduate, career changer, or junior in your field.
  • You have up to 5-10 years of experience.
  • You have a lot of experience but not all of it is relevant — cut out the less-relevant bits and only leave in what’s necessary.
  • You have a lot of extra information (like coursework, hobbies, volunteering, or extracurricular activities) pushing your resume to a second page.

Resume-length guidelines

Want to skip the ambiguity? It’s true that every situation requires a little nuance, but in general, you won’t go wrong if you follow these rules:

  • Allow one page for 5-10 years of experience. Less than that? Stick to one page. More than that? Two pages is fine.
  • Never use a two-page resume if you’re applying for any kind of junior or entry-level role. This is a hard and fast rule — at this stage of your career, you simply don’t have enough experience to justify more than a single page. Submitting a two-page resume tells recruiters that you also lack the necessary skills to communicate your key accomplishments in a direct and concise manner.
  • Never go above two pages (except in very specific circumstances, like academia — you’ll likely already know if this applies to you).
  • Keep your resume as short as possible. If you can fit your core skills, experience, and accomplishments onto a single page, stick to that. In general, “the shorter the better” is a good rule to follow.

How to organize a 2-page resume

Opting for a two-page resume? Here’s what you need to do next:

  1. Go over your experience and accomplishments with a fine-tooth comb. Make sure it all genuinely needs to be there and can’t be reasonably condensed — for example, jobs in other fields can safely be omitted, while for much older positions you can just list the company and job title but skip the bullet points.
  2. Keep the most essential details on the first page. This includes your contact details, most recent accomplishments, and any other key information. Some recruiters won’t bother to read the second page, so the first page of your resume should be able to stand on its own.
  3. Choose 1-2 additional resume sections — for example, publications, certifications, areas of expertise, professional organizations, or community involvement, but not all of these.
  4. Number your pages to prevent a hiring manager from accidentally skipping the second page of your resume.
  5. Put your name and (optionally) basic contact details on both pages, but don’t repeat other information.
  6. Use two separate pages — never print your resume on double-sided pages.
  7. Use our free resume checker to make sure there isn’t anything you’ve missed — or, conversely, to see if there aren’t a few things you’d be better off omitting to cut your resume down to a single page.

Advantages and disadvantages of a 2-page resume

If you do decide to stick to a two-page resume, you should be aware that it isn’t without its downsides. A two-page resume may have potential disadvantages like:

  • Loss of focus. Submitting a two-page resume won’t make a recruiter spend twice as long on it — instead, you risk having them overlook essential information.
  • Diluting key qualifications. It’s a lot easier to make sure your most impressive skills and accomplishments stand out on a one-page resume than on a two-page resume.
  • Demonstrating an inability to summarize. Communicating information concisely is an important skill in a lot of roles, and a two-page resume could actively work against you in this case.
  • Redundancy. If you’re simply repeating the same information over two pages, hiring managers won’t be impressed. Keep an eye out for repetitive skills or similar accomplishments.

So, why would anyone choose to use a two-page resume? Two-pages resumes can have their advantages, including:

  • More space. If you have extensive experience including multiple specialties or a particularly broad skill set, you may not have enough room on a one-page resume to communicate all this.
  • More accomplishments. Again, this is mostly an issue for people with longer careers — if you have 25+ years’ experience, chances are you easily have enough significant accomplishments to fill two resume pages.
  • Better design. If you’re trying to condense your resume onto a single page to the point where it’s becoming cluttered and hard to read, you’re better off allowing yourself a second page than cramming too much information into a smaller space.

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