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Andrew Arkley

How many pages should a CV be?

Composing a CV can quickly become a frustrating task, especially if you are an individual with extensive experience or an individual with little or no experience. Those which have extensive experience often find that organising information produces pages upon pages results while those with little experience will have difficulty in filling one page. The question that naturally arises is how many pages should your CV be in order to present a professional presence?

General Guidelines

As a general rule you should focus on maintaining a CV of 2 pages. This length presents an admirable level of experience as well as your key assets to the potential employer without boring them with needless, repetitive, or redundant material. Of course, the exception to this general guideline would be individuals with extensive and relevant career experience as well as senior level individuals. In this case such persons would want to expand in more detail on their capabilities to successfully fulfil the position offered.

Length does not merit value

A misconception among individuals composing a CV is that the longer the CV the more weight a potential client will give to it. A potential employer is not interested in the length so much as he or she is concerned that the potential employee possess the specific skill sets to perform the duties of the job to corporate standards. For example: A CV which is intended to produce employment in the medical profession would not necessarily need experience being a taxi cab driver to be shown. If other experience of greater relativity to the position for which you are applying can be presented you are encouraged to use such.

The entry level individual would not have the experience to fill multiple pages with relative content and so the challenge arises to present enough information to persuade the potential employer that you are competent for the role in which you are applying. Many times an entry level individual will present lower level jobs to “fluff” the CV. For example: An entry level career person may show how he or she has worked in various retail positions on their CV. Where this is fine and well in establishing a consistent work history, it has little merit when applying for a positions in a completely different field. Entry level persons should focus more on their education and skill sets so as to present a professional CV.

Experience versus History

Experience shows that you have the ability to perform the job in which you are applying. Filling the page with experiences should be done with care. Pay attention to the dates in which you gained such experience. Positions with little or no direct connection to the job in which you are applying should be evaluated as to whether or not they should be omitted. As a general rule, experiences aged more than 10 years which do not hold critical merit or establish a constant work history should be omitted.

Remember that you are presenting your experience as it relates to the present day. Although a potential employer may be interested in past events, they are not interested in a historical account of your life. Present only relevant experience to the employer to ensure that your skillset is remembered.

Individuals who have very little work history should present all experiences and skill sets in a manner that highlights his or her abilities.

The rule of 3

When sectioning off your CV a good practice is to follow the rule of three. In the personal statement, focus on at least three expectations of the position for which you are applying and how you can fulfil these expectations. Experience should be limited to the three most current positions which you have held unless you have specific and relevant experience in the field in which you are applying. Sub-categories will have more than three points so as to expound upon your abilities in more detail while retaining the overall clarity of the CV.

Overall, you want to ensure that you do not present a CV which is too short. CVs which are under a page in length need to be highlighted so that they span to a minimum of 2 pages. Extensive CVs which span more than 4 pages should be reduced greatly so as not to present an overbearing or cluttered ambiance.

Utilising the professional services of PurpleCV we will ensure that your CV is made to a professional number of pages. Offering various packages based upon your current career level, the CV Writers at PurpleCV will customise your current CV information so as to present a unique and powerful CV to a potential employer. We do this by ensuring that the desired skillset matches your experience, that your education and certifications are brought to the forefront, and that you are presented as someone who will benefit the employer’s interests. Check out our CV Writing Service page or Contact Us today

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