How Long Do Recruiters Spend Looking At Your Resume?

Jan Tegze
7 min readApr 4, 2023
Photo by KOBU Agency on Unsplash

Have you heard about the “infamous” six-second resume scan? Thanks to some “gurus,” job seekers swear by it and believe that recruiters only take six seconds to breeze through a resume before putting on their decision-making hats. (Autocorrect stopped us from calling it a six-second resume scam!)

Six-second resume scan — It’s a popular belief among job seekers that recruiters only spend six seconds reviewing a resume before making a decision.

But is there any truth to this commonly accepted notion?

In my quest to uncover the truth, I conducted several tests to understand how recruiters review resumes. Some time ago, I tried to find out the source of this myth, and you can read all about this here “Six Second Resume Myth.”

Oh, the irony! The company that created the infamous six-second myth spilled the beans and revealed that the actual time is 7.4 seconds (as of 2020). But trusting a “resume services” company that spreads these tall tales is a bit tricky. And I am not talking about articles and books promoting 7-second CV, 8-second CV etc.

This myth still survives because it works. Job seekers are scared that their resume is not good enough to beat some unknown enemy, which is why various resume services have applied this “study” to persuade job seekers to invest in their resume templates and assistance to gain an advantage. However, these resume templates cannot beat anything because resume bots do not exist. (How ATS Bots Could Reject Your Resume and Job Application)

The Test: Time Spent Evaluating Resumes

The results below are from the second part of the test I conducted this year. If you are interested to learn more about the first part of this test, you can check “A Closer Look at How Recruiters Find Top Talent.”

My experiment consisted of presenting three different resumes to 114 professional recruiters and timing how long it took them to evaluate each one.

On the first page, every recruiter was presented with the job description. They were shown the resume on the second page and asked to provide feedback on the third page. By tracking only the second page, I gained a deeper understanding of the time…

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Jan Tegze

Author of bestseller “Full Stack Recruiter”, fullstackrecruiter.net #Recruiter, Dream Chaser, Creator of impossible, #BlackBerry fan (probably the only one).