Resume 101: FAQs

To finish out the series, I thought it would be helpful to do a post dedicated to questions that I’ve been asked and that I have asked other resume-writing experts. If someone has a question, someone else probably has the same one, so read on for answers to some lingering resume-related things you may have been wondering!

Does my resume need to fit on one page?

No, if you have enough content that you truly believe belongs on your resume. If you go over one page, though, make sure you can fill two full pages. Don’t just use half of a second page. Don’t go over two pages either, since nobody will read that much.

What about my side hustle? Should I include that?

It depends. I suggest including your side hustle on your resume if:

  • Components of it relate directly to the jobs you are applying for. Ensure the content you include demonstrates skills that are relevant.
  • It served as your primary or only source of income for a span of time. Maybe you lost your job during a pandemic and picked up more pizza delivery shifts.

Should I have multiple versions of my resume tailored to the jobs I apply for?

Again, it depends. Generally, I say no, don’t bother with that because applying for jobs is time-consuming enough. If you are applying for jobs that are way outside of your usual roles, then I think it makes sense if you are willing to put the time in. You absolutely do not need to change your resume for every single job you apply for though.

Do I really need a cover letter?

I personally feel pretty strongly on this topic, and my answer is a resounding, “NO”. If a company requires a cover letter, I won’t apply. My mindset is that I don’t want to work for a company that requires additional custom documentation, on top of a resume and an online application, that they may or may not read.

That said, cover letters can serve as a way to expand on your interest in a position or a company that a resume alone won’t convey. If I’m applying for my absolute #1 dream job, then I might write a cover letter.

You may have a more relaxed mentality toward cover letters, and that’s totally fine. Just know that I don’t think you need to write one for every single job you apply for.

I saw this super cool layout that goes against all of your rules. What gives?

You’ve likely come across a resume or two that is totally unique and packs a punch. If you want to go outside the box on a resume, then it has to be phenomenal. If it is, you’ll shine. If it is half-assed, too weird (look up the infamous “my little pony resume”), or not executed well, it’ll get tossed in the reject pile or worse, passed around the office for schadenfreude (and no, that won’t get you hired).

If you have questions that I didn’t cover, hit me with them in the comments!

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