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How Many Jobs on Resume?

How Many Jobs On Resume?

As you begin to advance in your career, you are likely to have held more than one job in that time period.  But when it comes to writing your resume, how do you know which jobs you should put on your resume?  While you may think that listing all your jobs on your resume is your best bet, doing so may actually hurt your overall chances at landing an interview.

By default, a resume should be no longer than one-page in length.  This is a general rule of thumb and one that we wholeheartedly recommend.  Studies have shown that recruiters only look at a resume for an average of 6-seconds.  With such a short amount of time, you will want to ensure that you are only listing the most important and the most relevant information.

Your resume is a living document.  It should be updated and maintained frequently and often.  You should be continually revising aspects of your resume as you advance in your career and should continue to add and remove previous jobs, skills, and qualifications based on your most recent job and skills. 

In addition, you will want to update your resume to best fit a job posting you are applying to.  With the rise of the applicant tracking system (ATS), you will want your resume to include certain keywords and phrases which are found on the job posting.  Doing so will increase your chances that your resume will pass the applicant tracking system and land in front of the recruiter or hiring manager.

It’s About Quality

When it comes to the number of jobs you should have on your resume, remember that quality is greater than quantity.  Listing three positions on your resume which are within the same industry as a job you are applying to is far better than listing six positions which may have nothing to do with one-another.  You should focus the number of jobs on your resume to those that are in-line with your current career.  In addition, you should only list the jobs you’ve previously had which are in-line with where you want to go in your career.

Recruiters and hiring managers are looking for direct and actionable skills on your resume.  These are the skills that will help you to succeed in the role that you are applying to.  By including jobs and skills that aren’t relevant to the position you are applying for, you’re only taking up valuable real estate and room on your resume.

In addition, by listing our jobs, positions, and skills which are no longer relevant, you run the risk of confusing the recruiter or hiring manager.  They may not be focused on your most relevant and pertinent skills and may pass you over for another candidate.

Your resume should be clean, concise, and direct.  Any skill or experience that does not tell your story and your trajectory should be removed.  That position you held ten years ago is far less valuable on your resume now.

However, if you have multiple years of experience within the industry that is direct and actionable, you should look to combine the experiences.  For example, if you held the following positions:

  • (05/2009-10/2011) Junior Associate at XYZ Company
  • (11/2011-08/2014) Senior Associate at XYZ Company

You can combine the experiences as-follows

  • (05/2009-10/2011) (11/2011-08/2014) Junior/Senior Associate at XYZ Company

Doing so allows you to list both experiences without taking away space and real estate on your resume.  In addition, doing the above allows you to show direct progression and advancement in your career or industry.  This is especially helpful when vying or applying for more senior or managerial positions.

Speak The Employer’s Language

Your resume is meant to reflect who you are and what your most relevant and pertinent experiences are.  The employer is looking to fill a role and needs a certain objective completed.  It is in your best interest to have your resume speak the employer’s language and showcase your skills and qualifications which can be used at that role.

An employer is looking to see a candidate who is knowledgeable about the role they are hiring.  They simply do not care about your older, non-relevant experiences.  In fact, keeping those experiences and skills on your resume may be more harmful in the long-term.

When you are writing or editing your resume, always step back and ask yourself, would the employer care about this?  If you struggle to find the answer, then it is better to simply remove it.  Any piece of content on your resume that an employer won’t find helpful or useful is unnecessary and should be removed.

Your resume should be filled with quality content.  It should contain experiences, skills, and qualifications that matter.  While this can be subjective, we always encourage you to read and peruse the job posting.  You’ll be able to get a sense of what the employer is looking for and what they care about.  Utilizing that information, you’ll be able to edit and customize your resume accordingly and will increase your chances at landing the interview and the position.

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