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Thread: 2 page resumes

  1. #1
    Cyburbian dandy_warhol's avatar
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    2 page resumes

    i'll be attending the APA conference in San Antonio. i'll be bringing along some resumes on the off chance that someone would actually be interested in thinking about hiring me.

    right now my resume is 2 pages. i've tried and tried to get it down to one but it just ain't happening - too many jobs.

    my question is should i staple the 2 pages together or should double-side print?
    In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends. -Martin Luther King Jr.

  2. #2
    Forums Administrator & Gallery Moderator NHPlanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by dandy_warhol
    my question is should i staple the 2 pages together or should double-side print?
    My suggestion: neither.

    Make sure the paper and format of the 2 pages is the same, but don't staple them. Better presentation IMO (and as an aside, is how my resume is put together).
    "Growth is inevitable and desirable, but destruction of community character is not. The question is not whether your part of the world is going to change. The question is how." -- Edward T. McMahon, The Conservation Fund

  3. #3
    Super Moderator luckless pedestrian's avatar
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    if you can make your resume one page, that would be best - the second page often gets ignored, unless you put your education there

    bold and to the point is best since resumes often get quickly scanned

    a second page is only necessary if either you are in academia, because you have to list out your publications and lectures or you have worked for about 15 years after graduating

  4. #4

    Any validity?

    I've been told by a couple people that if you submit a resume that's more than 1 page, they don't even look at it. I was advised to take your last 3 jobs (as long as they cover 5 years or more) and reference your remaining jobs...

    Example:

    Other Cities/Counties employed with:
    City of Winnipeg, Associate Planner (June 1998 - March 1999)
    County of Tonasket, Senior Planner (March 1999 - April 2000)
    Quebec Provincial Regional Council (April 2000 - June 2001)

    The reason being is that your prospective employer can first look at your last 5 years and if they want to dive deeper than that, then they can see a timeline. Has worked pretty well for me. Helped me get my first planning job before I got my degree, interviewed for three others, landed one, turned down one, and came in second on the other. Just my $.02.
    Forechecking is overrated.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian dandy_warhol's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by NHPlanner
    My suggestion: neither.

    Make sure the paper and format of the 2 pages is the same, but don't staple them. Better presentation IMO (and as an aside, is how my resume is put together).
    thanks! i was wondering about that as well. but i was worried that somehow the second page would get lost. the second page does have important but not crucial info so if it were to get separated from the first page it wouldn't be the end of the world.

    EDIT: to get it down to 1 page i could remove a job or two since they were jobs from years ago that don't really have any basis in what i want to do now. but i was worried that i would get in trouble (with whom i'm not sure) for not having everything on the resume.
    In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends. -Martin Luther King Jr.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian Bubba's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by dandy_warhol
    right now my resume is 2 pages. i've tried and tried to get it down to one but it just ain't happening - too many jobs.
    Not that this really answers your question, but one possible solution to the "too many jobs" issue pushing your resume out to two pages is that if some of the jobs are in planning or are somehow applicable to planning or related fields, you could just show those selected jobs and call it "related experience". My eyes tend to glaze over when I get resumes listing eleventy billion jobs that aren't related to the posistion I'm trying to fill (not that I have any idea if that's what your resume looks like - I'm just speaking in generalities here).

    EDIT: looks like you figured that out already

  7. #7
    Cyburbian
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    Quote Originally posted by dandy_warhol
    EDIT: to get it down to 1 page i could remove a job or two since they were jobs from years ago that don't really have any basis in what i want to do now. but i was worried that i would get in trouble (with whom i'm not sure) for not having everything on the resume.
    I have taken non-related jobs off of my resume in order to keep it at one page.

  8. #8
    Cyburbian dandy_warhol's avatar
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    alll righty then, if you guys say it is ok. . .i shall begin the editing process.
    In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends. -Martin Luther King Jr.

  9. #9
    Cyburbian Masswich's avatar
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    Don't Agree Entirely

    I moved from one page to two at around 5 years' planning experience. I think its fair to have two pages as long as the resume is tight and to the point. More than two pages is a bit much, although I could see moving up to 3 pages at around 15 years' experience.

    As someone who hires people, I think its not fair to say the second page is ignored. What is ignored is any cover letter or resume that doesn't explain the person's work life and why they want the job clearly.

  10. #10
    Cyburbian dandy_warhol's avatar
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    ok. i removed one job (Personnel Coordinator from 8 years ago) and the two conferences i've presented or will present at. that brought it down to one page.

    if it were directly planning experience i wouldn't want to remove it but since it was more HR than it isn't really relavant, right? nothing that i did in that position really helped me with being a future planner. except for dealing with confrontational people. but i suppose i could bring that up in an interview if they were asking about dealing with confrontational people/situations.
    In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends. -Martin Luther King Jr.

  11. #11
    Cyburbian The One's avatar
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    Phoooey

    Two pages.....HA! and don't listen to all that bunk about one page!

    Mine is 4 pages and I've had a great response

    Key Points:
    1. If your looking for a upper level management position, throw that old stupid rule out the window and make your resume as long as it needs to be to adequately describe your past experiences.
    2. If your looking for an entry or mid level planner job, then maybe two pages is ok, since most of the other resumes will be one page or two max.
    3. If you have the experience, don't worry about the length.
    4. You need space to sell yourself.
    5. A short resume that says little about your experience may get a short response, no thanks.
    6. If you have a variety of experiences, sing that song loud and long....
    7. Always put your education last, if your not looking for your first job.
    8. I could go on all day like this...............

    I suspect some crusty professor somewhere started this garbage about a one page resume in the 1970's and sadly its stuck since then!!! I can't believe all the "how to write a resume" books out there still pushing this

    Someone should do a poll to see how many pages we cyburbians use in our current resumes....
    "The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness."
    John Kenneth Galbraith

  12. #12
    Cyburbian jmello's avatar
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    My current resume is two pages long and it has gotten me 10+ interviews and two new jobs. I print it double-sided on Bond paper when handing out/mailing hard copies. Of course, all the stuff on the back is not that important (i.e. travel, languages, "references available upon request," etc.)

    The strict one-page requirement is mainly for those fresh out of school with no experience.

  13. #13

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    A lot depends on who you want to work for. Hyper-management types will follow the latest trend, which has been one-page resumes, but you have a little slack with most planning directors. For a resume that I am passing out without a cover letter (the cover letter is the more important of the two pieces of paper by far), I would pay some attention to graphic design, probably using just a spot of color.

  14. #14
    Cyburbian imaplanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by dandy_warhol
    ok. i removed one job (Personnel Coordinator from 8 years ago) and the two conferences i've presented or will present at. that brought it down to one page.

    if it were directly planning experience i wouldn't want to remove it but since it was more HR than it isn't really relavant, right? nothing that i did in that position really helped me with being a future planner. except for dealing with confrontational people. but i suppose i could bring that up in an interview if they were asking about dealing with confrontational people/situations.

    I think if possible I would make some sort of reference to that position- if only to list it as "other information" or something. I guess it depends on whether you are looking for an entry level position or a more senior level. Personnel skills are very important- specifically if you are looking to end up in some sort of supervisory position.

  15. #15
    Cyburbian Planderella's avatar
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    A couple of years ago, this guy stopped by my office with a resume in hand. It was one page, double-sided. We got a good laugh off of that. Needless to say, he was never called for an interview. It wasn't because of the resume per se, but, I do think that it was tacky. Personally, I'd rather see a 2-3 page resume full of RELEVANT job experience as opposed to a truncated version that may not give the interviewer a full picture of what you're capable of. I really think that 1 page resume rule needs to be eliminated from the job seeking requirements rule.
    "A witty woman is a treasure, a witty beauty is a power!"

  16. #16
    Forums Administrator & Gallery Moderator NHPlanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Lee Nellis
    A lot depends on who you want to work for. Hyper-management types will follow the latest trend, which has been one-page resumes, but you have a little slack with most planning directors. For a resume that I am passing out without a cover letter (the cover letter is the more important of the two pieces of paper by far), I would pay some attention to graphic design, probably using just a spot of color.
    I agree completely with Lee that the cover letter is as important, if not more important than the resume.
    "Growth is inevitable and desirable, but destruction of community character is not. The question is not whether your part of the world is going to change. The question is how." -- Edward T. McMahon, The Conservation Fund

  17. #17
    Cyburbian dandy_warhol's avatar
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    should i have a cover letter with it as well? obviously when applying for positions i attach a cover letter, but since this was more about networking do i need a cover letter?

    if i'm just handing it out to random people how would i address it? to whom it may concern?
    In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends. -Martin Luther King Jr.

  18. #18
    Cyburbian Salmissra's avatar
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    I truncated mine down to one page by changing the format. Instead of a chronological approach, I have a skills-based approach. That way, you're not double or triple listing skills/job experience (ie things you do at every position) and can fit more relavent and varying experiences into the shorter format. The reviewer/interviewer can see all your skills up front, and if they have questions about work history, the jobs are listed. Professional work experience is important, even if it's not 100% planning related.
    "We do not need any other Tutankhamun's tomb with all its treasures. We need context. We need understanding. We need knowledge of historical events to tie them together. We don't know much. Of course we know a lot, but it is context that's missing, not treasures." - Werner Herzog, in Archaeology, March/April 2011

  19. #19
    Cyburbian jmello's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by dandy_warhol
    should i have a cover letter with it as well? obviously when applying for positions i attach a cover letter, but since this was more about networking do i need a cover letter?
    I ALWAYS attach a cover letter to my resume whether I am handing it out, mailing it or e-mailing it.

  20. #20
    Cyburbian dandy_warhol's avatar
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    okay, anyone who has some free time on their hands want to take a look at my resume and cover letter? you just have to promise not to laugh at it if it is too bad.

    *waves flag of insecurity*


    edit for insecurity.
    In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends. -Martin Luther King Jr.

  21. #21
    Cyburbian Richmond Jake's avatar
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    How timely. Today I received an application with an attached cover letter and a six page resume.
    Annoyingly insensitive

  22. #22
    Cyburbian The One's avatar
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    Well.....

    Quote Originally posted by RichmondJake
    How timely. Today I received an application with an attached cover letter and a six page resume.
    What do you think my chances are......??
    "The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness."
    John Kenneth Galbraith

  23. #23
    Cyburbian imaplanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by dandy_warhol
    should i have a cover letter with it as well? obviously when applying for positions i attach a cover letter, but since this was more about networking do i need a cover letter?
    My thoughts would be not to have a cover letter for just handing it out. Obviously there are more experienced/management types in here who you should listen to more than me but my two cents is to not have a cover letter. Isn't the purpose of a cover letter to more specifically address how you are qualified for a specific position? The resume is your statement of qualifications and in a situation like the APA conference I would imagine more people would just want to glance at a resume than have to read through the fluff that undoubtedtly has to be in a cover letter.

  24. #24
    Cyburbian solarstar's avatar
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    Lots of good advice already. That one-page stuff is ridiculous - my resume won't fit on one page and when I see one that does I start to wonder about that person's experience. Cover letters are a great idea, but a problem if you're just going to hand out resumes at a conference. It really depends on where you want to work - in Florida you don't have to try too hard to get a ton of job offers regardless of experience. There's just too much of a demand. Maybe a few general cover letters - one for how you'd love to work for us bureaucrats and another for how you'd love to work in the private sector.

  25. #25
    Super Moderator luckless pedestrian's avatar
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    I know the one page stuff sounds ridiculous but really, if you only have had a few positions related to what you are trying to do, a couple of degrees, and a few professional memberhsips, what else is there?

    as a manager, I don't care that you like to camp, not because I'm a jerk, really, it's great, I love camping too, but that first round of reviewing applications, I am just looking to see who meets the basic requirements and the hobbies and work with non profits barely gets a glance - whether you "fit" into the organization comes from the interview, I have learned the hard way, this is the most important thing

    again, in academia, where publishing and speaking engagements really matter, yeah, you need as many pages as you need to fit that in

    but a resume that is bulleted and cleanly formatted so you can give a first blush at it to know if the candidate meets the basic requirements is still the way to go

    and yes, cover letters really do matter! if someone doesn't set up a decent paragaph, out they go, no matter what the resume says!

    for your purpose, dandy, on the cover letter, if it were me, I would write a blip about who I am - what I have done, where and in what I got my education, general goals (to allow some flexibility, unless you you are very specific in where you want to go, though I would advise against that, a career path can make some cool detours) - the purpose of the blip is so they know you can write a complete sentence and elaborate on yoruself a little - you can even set it up like a bio

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