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Make Your Resume Fit on One Page

A major problem many job seekers face when writing their resumes is how to make everything fit on one page. Here is a page full of tweaks you can use to make that happen. They are simple to implement and can be used before, during, and after you write. The tweaks are also applicable to cover letters and the other letters our creators can generate.

Do You Want a One-Page Resume?

resume fit on one page If you already have an existing resume, you are sure to find some tweaks that can cut down on the space used on your page. If you have not started writing yet, then you can plan and implement these tweaks as you go. If you are using our Free Resume Creator, you can think ahead and decide which tweaks will be appropriate for your template style.

A quick tip to factor into your thought process is to put your most important facts toward the top of the page. If the employer starts to read, then abandons the remaining text, they will have at least read your best stuff! If they didn't like what they read, you gave it your best shot.

12 Tweaks to Shrink Your Resume

  1. Pick a Compact Style
    Some of our styles are more compact than others. Our compact styles would include style numbers 5, 7, 21, 23, and 30. The way we format the information on these pages makes them more compact, unlike some of our other styles which tend to spread things out. For this article, we assume that there is enough content to fill the page. To save space, the formatting of these template styles puts the name and address together on the same line for each job and school.
  2. Use a Smaller Font
    Large fonts are physically larger, and the opposite is true for small fonts. The default font size in our creators is 12px so write your pages and see how they look. We have page break marks built into each creator on the Preview page to give an estimate of the number of pages in length your document will be. Within the creators, on the Colors/Fonts page, you can select the font size and the font face. Try a more compact font such as Arial, Times New Roman, Georgia, or Verdana you can quickly switch them in and out within the program. More about choosing fonts.
  3. Combine Sections
    Instead of using all three Additions sections try to combine related information into one section by giving it a title that will encompass two or more topics. You could try a title like "Additions" or "Awards and Achievements." Look at the information you want to combine, and you will think of an appropriate title.
  4. Include Relevant Experience/Education
    You may have a lot of experience or education, but there isn't enough room to fit all of it. Write the info that is most relevant to the job you are seeking. Some aspects of your career history may be totally unrelated to your current job history. If you are an underwater welder and you used to be a waiter, being a waiter probably won't help you get a welding job. If you are not sure how to get started trimming these sections you can read these pages about education writing help and experience writing help.
  5. Consolidate Bullet Points
    Instead of having a long list of bullet points make them shorter, then combine similar thoughts, or list them using commas to keep them on the same line. Each bullet uses one line of space, so whatever you write here better be really important. Carefully think it through, you can whittle the content of the bullets down if you try. Keep the usage of articles (a, an the) to a minimum, learn more about this on our resume grammar errors page.
  6. Change Line Spacing
    The line spacing is the distance between the lines such as single-spaced or double-spaced. There is also a setting called line-height which adjusts the lines more precisely. Our templates have these as fixed settings, but programs like Word allow the line spacing to be adjusted.
  7. Reformat Dangling Words
    For example, when writing a bullet point, if the sentence is long, it will wrap to the next line. Sometimes there will be one word that wraps and that wastes a whole line for just one word. Rewrite that bullet point to reduce the number of words to keep the sentence from wrapping for that one word. Bullet points are normally short, so this is usually not an issue, but this could occur in the Objective, Skills, Other, Duties, and Additions sections too because they have large areas for text. More about formatting.
  8. Leave Out Your High School
    If you went to college, you obviously went to high school, so there is no real need to list it. If you don't have any higher education, then you will need to list it as your highest level of education.
  9. Use Smaller Margins
    Everyone says to use one-inch margins, but you could try half-inch margins to gain more space. Our system is fixed at one-inch margins unless you are printing where you can set the margins in your print interface.
  10. Don't Use a Photo
    Photos and pictures can be nice on a resume, but they do take up space if you can't spare the room then eliminate the photo. If you need a photo, you can use the other tweaks listed to create the room for it.
  11. Don't Use an Objective
    An objective statement may be an obsolete feature. You can replace it with the Skills section or one of our custom Additions sections. The Objective takes up at least three lines, one for the title, one for the actual line of info and the dividing space below it. It could be more depending upon the design. You could try to combine the Objective with another custom section you created.
  12. Forget the "References Available Upon Request" Line
    Our system has the provision to add this line to the bottom of your page. If you are short on content, it might be something you want to include, but if you are short on space skipping this line can save several lines worth of space.
If you have the common problem of having too much to write, and nowhere to write it, you came to the right place. You are bound to find these space-saving tweaks helpful in shrinking your resume down to one page. These same tweaks can be applied to a cover letter too because you won't want that to be too long either. To build either of these documents, you can access the creators by way of the menu at the top right of this page. Get more help here.