8 Resume Tips for Older Job Seekers (2023)

Age may not always be in your favor when it comes to job hunting. Sometimes ageist hiring managers believe that older candidates have a harder time keeping up with younger candidates when it comes to technology and new developments. Employers may also find that older employees pay more in wages and benefits. In addition, older job seekers may be perceived as having outdated experience, especially compared to younger workers who often have more up-to-date and relevant skills, certifications or requirements. So what should older job seekers do to keep up with the trend? There are a few things they need to keep in mind when updating their resume. Here and below are the most important.

1. Exclude dates

Using dates can be a big mistake. Do not use dates for college, graduate school, high school, or any certificate or professional development programs. If you have a college degree, you might want to consider skipping high school altogether.

(Video) 5 Resume Writing Tips For Older Job Seekers

2. Consider the non-chronological order

Using a chronological resume is also a mistake for older job seekers because it builds a job history in chronological order, starting with the first job. The preferred format is a functional resume, which focuses on the person's skills and experience rather than chronological work history. Another format suitable for older job seekers is called the portfolio format. This starts with determining skills and qualifications. It's also a great way to answer any potential questions about career changes or gaps in your work history, as it builds your work history in reverse chronological order. This is usually the format I choose because, as candidates progress from intermediate to senior level, it's easy to show achievements while continuing to hide age.

3. Limit your relevant experience

If you're writing a summary, don't discuss how many years of relevant experience you have. The mere fact that you have 20 or more years of work experience can mark you as an older job candidate. I usually limit experience to two things: age and resume length. While I understand why most job seekers want to list all of their experience, it ends up being too much for older job seekers. There's no need to go back 20 or more years to prove you qualify. Restricted to ages 15 or younger. When done well, it results in a resume of about two pages, which is satisfactory.

(Video) 5 Simple Job Interview Tips For Older Job Seekers

4. Don't be ashamed of your skills

No matter which resume format you choose, it's a big mistake to avoid talking about your skills. Show potential employers that you know the latest technology or software. Also remove any old or obsolete technologies.

5. Write a targeted resume

This is important for any position you apply for. Failure to do so is not only a mistake in your application, but also makes your CV focus on your relevant experience, achievements and skills. Each position is customized with a targeted resume with a summary and key words in the job description.

(Video) 8 Key Mistakes Made On Resumes - A Guide for Job Seekers

6. Check your fonts

What font are you using? Some, such as Times New Roman, have become somewhat outdated and are now less commonly used. You also don't want your resume to look dated.

7. Give LinkedIn some love

Another mistake is to remove the LinkedIn URL from your resume. Put it at the top along with your name, mobile number and email address. However, make sure it's also updated before adding it. nice updateLinkedIn profileInclude your title, summary, professional experience, references, skills, volunteer experience, and other applicable sections. It's also a good idea to personalize your LinkedIn URL for personal branding purposes.

(Video) Stupid Resume Mistakes: Older Workers, What's Important in Your Resume? | JobSearchTV.com

8. Technology is everything

What version of Microsoft Word do you use to create your resume? If it is out of date, it will affect the appearance and design of the file after conversion. It is also important to consider that most resumes are emailed or uploaded, so individuals receiving or downloading the file may see a distorted appearance due to outdated word processing techniques. It's best to keep your computer as up-to-date as possible to avoid this situation and possible missed job opportunities.

A version of this article previously appeared onelf boss, which helps women gain insight into pay, company culture, benefits and work flexibility. Founded in 2015, Fairygodboss provides company ratings, job listings, discussion boards and career advice.


How do I write a resume for a 60 year old? ›

9 resume tips for mature workers
  1. Choose the right resume format. ...
  2. Limit your work history to 10 to 15 years. ...
  3. Don't include graduation dates. ...
  4. Make the most of your professional summary. ...
  5. Emphasize your technology skills. ...
  6. Use a modern font (typeface style). ...
  7. Include a healthy dose of action verbs.
Aug 11, 2022

How do I write a resume after 20 years from work? ›

7 tips to leverage long-term employment on your resume
  1. Keep learning. ...
  2. Remove outdated skills and credentials. ...
  3. List different positions separately. ...
  4. Display accomplishments. ...
  5. Use your employment history to your advantage. ...
  6. Highlight experiences related to your goal. ...
  7. Create a career summary section.

What type of resume is best for older workers? ›

For many older job seekers, it may be best to use a hybrid resume. This resume style allows you to highlight your relevant skills at the top of the resume without drawing attention to your dates of employment. While you include your work history in chronological order, it doesn't take center stage.

How do you write a resume if you had the same job for 10 years? ›

Diversify Your Experience

This can work wonders for your resume. Compartmentalize your career into the different roles and positions you have held, going back a decade or so. List each position separately, as though they were separate jobs, despite the fact that the employer is the same.

What does a retired resume look like? ›

Your retiree resume should include several of the same elements of any other resume, such as a summary of experience, skills, certifications and education. A retiree resume, however, focuses on the skills and qualifications you have gained from your employment.

What is an example of a retired resume objective? ›

Examples of retired resume objectives

Driven sales specialist with 17 years of experience in insurance sales and the retail industry, seeking to use my expert knowledge of sales tactics and customer service techniques to boost a company's profit and expand clientele.

How do I make a resume if I haven't worked in 10 years? ›

Tips for writing a resume after long-term unemployment
  1. Write a compelling headline. ...
  2. Highlight your skills. ...
  3. List professional training or seminars. ...
  4. Include freelance experience. ...
  5. Update your terminology. ...
  6. Mention your involvement in a professional organization or relevant trade group. ...
  7. Omit the months from your employment dates.
Mar 10, 2023

Should you put more than 10 years of experience on resume? ›

Generally, experts recommend keeping about 10-15 years of work experience on your resume, but that guidance changes depending on your professional history. Your resume is one of the first things a potential employer sees about you.

Should you put 30 years of experience on a resume? ›

Listing 20 or 30 years of experience can clutter your resume and make it much too long. Unless you are a senior executive, the ideal resume length is one to two pages. The key to a winning resume is providing relevant details on your work history—not every detail.

Should older workers remove dates on resume? ›

While you'll have to provide dates in your work experience section, you can age-proof your resume by removing older roles as well as dates related to education and certifications if they fall outside that 15-year window, recommends Augustine.

Do employers look at old resumes? ›

The answer may surprise you! Not only do employers keep resumes and other documents on file, they often go back through them to find candidates for open positions.

How long should a senior resume be? ›

Most resumes should be between one and two pages long. But, some can be three pages or more.

Should you put 20 years on a resume? ›

The common advice is to keep the work experience in a resume between 10 to 15 years. Doing so will give your hiring manager a general outline of your start, your growth, and where you find yourself now.

Do I put down a job I worked ten years ago on a resume? ›

Most experts recommend including 10-15 years of work history on your resume. For the majority of professionals, this includes between three and five different jobs.

What do you put on a resume after 20 years of not working? ›

Include volunteer work you did during your period of unemployment. Emphasize your education by adding more detail to your resume education section. Add any certifications you got while unemployed. Briefly explain why you haven't been working in your resume summary.

What does a failure resume look like? ›

Unlike a traditional résumé, which shows off our achievements, a failure résumé lists the times when things have not gone to plan; for example when you didn't land a role, or you messed up a project.

What should I list at the bottom of my resume? ›

The last section to consider adding to your resume is a shortlist of any other relevant accomplishments or volunteer work. Only include those that are relevant or that may help create a better picture of who you are as an individual as related to the position you're applying for.

What should a resume not look like? ›

Personal details. There's no need to include personal information on a resume such as your social security number, marital status, nationality, sexual orientation, or spiritual beliefs. In fact, it is illegal for employers to ask for these personal details.

What is a good objective on resume? ›

Here's how to write an objective for a resume:

Start with a strong trait, add 2–3 key skills, describe your professional goals, and say what you hope to do for the company. State the position to which you're applying and use the name of the company. Keep it short: 2–3 sentences or 30–50 words is the sweet spot.

What are examples of strong resume objectives? ›

General career objective examples

Example 1: To secure a challenging position in a reputable organization to expand my learnings, knowledge, and skills. Example 2: Secure a responsible career opportunity to fully utilize my training and skills, while making a significant contribution to the success of the company.

Should I take the years off my resume? ›

Well, for one, career experts agree: There is no rule that you have to put your graduation year on your resume. While removing the year can be a smart move to deflect attention from your exact age, career experts suggest that you focus on your experience instead of worrying about your age.

Should you list unemployment on your resume? ›

Directly address your current unemployment and give it full context. Explain why you left your last job and why you've been out of the job market so long. This gives the hiring manager some background on the situation and keeps them from imagining the worst about you.

What do you say when you have no employment history? ›

You can tell them all about it in a "Volunteer Experience" or "Relevant Volunteer and Academic Experience" subheading on your resume.

How far back should a resume go 2023? ›

You're probably going to need more than just a resumé to get an interview. But that's a subject for another post. Consider that Career Builder suggests 10 years as a benchmark for how far back your resumé can go in 2023.

Should I include all work history on resume? ›

You Don't Need to Include Every Job on Your Resume: Highlight jobs that demonstrate your experience, skills, and fit for the role. Leave Off Jobs That Are Unrelated: You can also omit jobs that are more than 10 to 15 years old, to avoid age discrimination.

How many jobs on a resume is too many? ›

Hiring managers won't usually pay attention to what you did beyond that. How many jobs on a resume is too many? More than five jobs on a resume is too many. Typically a good rule of thumb is to include just two to four jobs on a resume, or enough to cover the past 15 years of your work experience.

How long is too long for a resume? ›

How Long Is Too Long? The length of the resume is a common question for applicants during the job search process. The standard rule is that a resume should never exceed two pages, regardless of the years of experience. Although there are some exceptions, you should follow this rule in most cases.

How many references should you have on a resume? ›

How many references should I include on a resume? Many applications tend to ask for 2 to 3 references. It isn't necessary to have more but it may raise red flags to a hiring manager if you only have one. They may ask for a mix of previous direct supervisors as well as character references.

What three things do a quality resume have? ›

Key Elements of a Resume
  • Personal Information.
  • Objective.
  • Education.
  • Work and Related Experience.
  • Awards and Honors.
  • Activities/Hobbies.
  • Skills.
  • References (3-5 people)

How many jobs should be listed on a resume? ›

How Many Jobs Should You List on a Resume? You should list as many jobs on your resume as you can assuming they are all relevant and you're not going beyond the 10-15 year limit. The number of jobs typically varies between 7 and 3. As long as each job or position is relevant, you shouldn't worry about the exact number.

What mistakes should I try to avoid when writing a resume? ›

The 10 Worst Resume Mistakes to Avoid
  • Typos and Grammatical Errors. ...
  • Lack of Specifics. ...
  • Attempting the "One–Size–Fits–All" Approach. ...
  • Highlighting Duties Instead of Accomplishments. ...
  • Going on Too Long or Cutting Things Too Short. ...
  • Bad Summary. ...
  • No Action Verbs. ...
  • Leaving Off Important Information.

What is the first thing on a resume? ›

Your opening statement should start with one sentence about who you are and what you bring to the job, then describe the skills and attributes you have that suit you to the job.

What is the rule of thumb for resumes? ›

As a general rule of thumb, a resume should include one page for every 10 years of work experience. Recent graduates should not have two page resumes and director level professionals should not have four or five pages.

How long should a 20 year resume be? ›

Customize your resume for the job you're applying for and include only relevant experience. If you've done everything right, you shouldn't get past one page. If you have 10-15+ years of experience, it's okay to write a 2-page resume as long as all the information presented is relevant to the job.

What is the most common style of resume? ›

The most commonly used resume type, a chronological resume traces your work and educational history in reverse chronological order, just like on LinkedIn. Probably the biggest reason why most job seekers use a chronological resume is recruiters are most familiar with it.

Should you leave a job off your resume if you were fired? ›

Being fired is not a reason why candidates should exclude a job from their CV. So no, you should not forget about your last position just because you've been let go. That is because you have still done the work, hopefully the company thrive, learned new skills, and achieved results.

Should I put my address on my resume? ›

The short answer is: No, you don't need to add an address to your resume. In today's workforce, most communication is done via email or phone. This makes the need for a full address outdated. Instead, you should list a general location on your resume.

Should a resume be 1 page? ›

The short answer as to whether your resume should be one page is still, ideally, yes. Employers have to look through dozens, if not hundreds, of resumes to fill a position. They want the resumes to be quick and easy to read, so the shorter, the better.

Can a resume be 2 pages? ›

You can use a two-page resume if you have an extensive work history of over 10-15 years or if you're applying for an executive position. If you're a student or entry-level applicant, your best bet is to use a one-page resume.

How do you put 10 years of work experience on a resume? ›

In general, work in a backward chronological order (in a resume format often known as reverse chronological format ) starting with your most recent position at the top of the page and include the last 10-15 years of employment history. The backward chronological order works best for most job seekers.

How do you explain a 10 year employment gap? ›

Don't include your entire work history.

Instead, list only those you've held over the last 10 to 15 years and stick to positions most relevant to the job you're applying for. This means you don't have to worry about employment gaps that fall outside of this timeframe.

What happens if your resume is too long? ›

If your resume is too long, it's a complete waste of time to go through. On the other hand, if a resume is too short they won't get an overview of your suitability for the position. It's good practice to scope out the hiring preferences of the company you are applying to.

How far back should a resume go? ›

Generally, experts recommend keeping about 10-15 years of work experience on your resume, but that guidance changes depending on your professional history. Your resume is one of the first things a potential employer sees about you.

Are you supposed to put your age on your resume? ›

Should you put your age on your resume? "? You should not include your age on a resume because it can prevent you from being hired. Although many employers have adjusted their hiring process to reduce bias based on age, hiring discrimination still exists in the workplace.

How long should a resume be for a senior position? ›

For most candidates, a resume should be only one page. Be brief and concise with anything you write on your resume. Customize your resume for the job you're applying for and include only relevant experience. If you've done everything right, you shouldn't get past one page.

Which of the following should not be on your resume? ›

Personal details. There's no need to include personal information on a resume such as your social security number, marital status, nationality, sexual orientation, or spiritual beliefs. In fact, it is illegal for employers to ask for these personal details.

What is the 30 second rule for resume? ›

Did you know in a competitive labor market, your resume must get you on the interview pile within 30 seconds? If not, you will end up in the reject pile and never get a shot to sell yourself in person. 30 seconds is longer than the average recruiter takes.

When should you remove a job from your resume? ›

When to leave a short-term job off your resume
  1. You held the job for less than 6 months.
  2. You don't have any relevant accomplishments to list.
  3. The job was in a completely different role or industry.

Should I list 20 years of experience on resume? ›

Don't go back more than 10 to 15 years

The majority of experts agree that a resume should only include the last 10 to 15 years of employment, and there are several good reasons for this.

What should be the biggest thing on your resume? ›

The top of your resume is for your contact information. This is your name, your phone number, your email, and for privacy reasons, just the city and state where you live. If you have professional social media channels and profiles, share them, let them know.

Do I put my address on my resume? ›

In today's workforce, including your full address on your resume is no longer necessary. However, including a general location on your resume provides an added boost to your job search.

Do employers look up your age? ›

Unless you list your birthday somewhere on your resume, the employer should not ever see your age.

What are soft skills examples? ›

“Top soft skills are teamwork, attention to detail, time management, organization, verbal and written communication, leadership, emotional intelligence, adaptability/flexibility, problem-solving/conflict resolution, and interpersonal skills …

What questions should your resume answer? ›

The Questions Your Resume Should Always Answer
  • Does this person understand what we need? ...
  • Does this person have the skills we need? ...
  • Has this person produced results in the past? ...
  • Is this person committed to this career? ...
  • Is this person responsible? ...
  • Can this person meet deadlines and handle high-pressure situations?


1. Job Search Tips for Mature Workers | Indeed Career Tips
2. Write an Incredible Resume: 5 Golden Rules!
(Jeff Su)
3. Tech tips for older job seekers
(CBS News)
4. 8 Parts to the Perfect Resume Career Profile 🔴 Live Office Hours with Andrew LaCivita
(Andrew LaCivita)
5. 8 Tips for Writing a Winning Resume
(Thomas Frank)
6. How to age-proof your resume


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