How To Shorten Your Resume

how to shorten your resume

No matter how much work experience and skills you’ve accumulated, your resume should typically remain one or two pages in length. Typically, recent college grads and professionals without a lengthy repertoire of work experience should keep it to one page, whereas those with more to showcase can set their resume limit to two pages. The following tips for how to shorten your resume will help you get all the important info on a single 8.5×11″ document, or at most, two pages. You won’t need a scroll, and the hiring manager won’t need a magnifying glass!

So, how do you accomplish a shorter resume without resorting to an 8.5 font size? Keep reading to find out.

How To Shorten Your Resume: Top Tips

Decrease the margin size

Your default page margins are typically an inch. But when it comes to fashioning a solid, successful resume, this is a waste of space. Try setting up a half-inch margin all around. This will give you more room but still allow for enough white space.

Mesh relevant sections

Separating your experiences into different sections takes up space. Try to pare it down to just three or four sections on your resume. And, you can combine two similar areas — such as “Skills & Interests.” However, if you feel like your achievements are much too varied, you might consider placing items that wouldn’t fit under your experience or education into an “Additional Information” section.

Combine lines

When it comes to how to shorten your resume, it’s critical to also figure out where you can combine lines of info into the same space. For instance, instead of giving your GPA its own line, place it on the same row as your degree and your graduation year. Example formatting:

  • Bachelor of Arts, Journalism  ||  3.96 GPA  ||  Texas State University, 2012-2016

The same applies to your company and job title; keep them on the same line. At the top of your resume, you can even place your street address, phone number and email address on the same row (perhaps using the same double-line separators as shown above). Technically, you don’t even really need to include your street address anymore. City and ZIP code usually suffice.

Alter your line spacing settings

In Microsoft Word, you can adjust the spacing between lines and new sections (within the Format – Paragraph tab). In the meantime, set your resume to 10-point font (except your name, which should be slightly larger — 12-point or 14-point font size).

Shorten your bullet point content

Your bullet points make up the bulk of a resume. To make sure people actually read about your experience, never let them extend to a third line. Two lines max (and preferably just one line). If your bullet point takes up one line, plus a tiny bit that dangles onto the next, parse down your language. It’s an aesthetically pleasing format and ultimately saves you space.

Cut down the extras!

Is every item on your resume relevant to the job you’re applying for? Be objective, and cut what may not be interesting to a hiring manager. Keep the items you know will make you stand out. Of course, it’s not easy to go line-by-line and delete aspects of your work history. But when it comes to how to shorten your resume, keep it generally shorter and sweeter.

If you’re really struggling to cut down your CV, try to approach this often arduous process as a puzzle. It needs solving before you snag that dream job — so use these formatting tips to tighten it up!

What other tips for how to shorten your resume would you add? Let us know on our social channels — Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram!

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