You Should Use Staples Instead of a Paperclip for Your CV

You Should Use Staples Instead of a Paperclip for Your CV

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We are in an age where employers primarily vet job applicants online. Because of this, candidates may be unfamiliar with submitting paper resumes. Job fairs are one scenario where hopeful candidates will need a paper resume.

You should paperclip your resume if it is longer than one page rather than stapling it. If your resume is longer, using paperclips makes it easy for employers to handle your documents for scanning, copying, and data protection. Ideally, your resume shouldn’t even be longer than one page!

This article will explain why you should opt for a paperclip versus stapling your resume together. You will also be provided with other helpful tips for attending job fairs and submitting paper copies of your resume. 

3 Benefits of Using Paperclips for Resumes

A resume that is longer than one page should be secured with a paperclip. A paperclip is the best choice for a resume. You should not use a staple. 

A paperclip should be used as the pages need to remain together upon submission to an employer at a job fair, but once in their hands, it likely will not stay together. There are three primary reasons why the pages should not be stapled.

1. Paperclipped Resumes May Be Scanned Later

While you will hand employers a paper copy of your resume, it will not always stay in paper form. Employers will collect a lot of resumes during a job fair, and many opt to upload them to a digital format to review them later. Scanning multi-page resumes are easier with paperclips that are easy to remove rather than staples. 

2. Photocopying Papercliddped Resumes is Easier

You will give employers one copy of your resume. However, the employer may need more than one as the resume may be made and distributed to others as needed (i.e., Human Resources and hiring managers). Like scanning, making copies is much easier without staples.

3. Stapled Resumes Are Harder to Shred

Yet another reason to avoid staples is for the applicant’s benefit. To protect job applicants’ privacy, paper resumes are typically destroyed by shredding. If a stapled resume mistakenly goes through a paper shredder, it can cause damage to the shredder. 

Ideally, Resumes Shouldn’t Even Be Longer Than One Page!

Yes, you should use a paperclip if your resume is longer than one page. However, the best length for a resume is actually one page. A one-page resume is more likely to be read thoroughly and fully. One-page resumes are also more concise, providing the hiring manager with only the most pertinent information

Getting Your Resume (And Yourself) Ready for a Job Fair

Job fairs still have relevance in the job market. Job fairs offer one advantage, which is face-to-face interaction. You have the opportunity to connect with employers in person

Skip the Cover Letter

There is no need to have a cover letter for your resume when you attend a job fair. Cover letters are intended to be specific to the company and job position that you are applying for. For a job fair, you only need a resume that provides a general overview of your experience, skills, and education

Bring Many Copies of Your Resume

This may go without saying, but be sure to have more than enough resumes on hand. You can opt to create different versions of your resume based on the company or jobs you are interested in. To prevent them from wrinkling, carry your generic resumes in a professional folder. 

Create a Plan

Be prepared before going to a job fair, as they can be extremely busy. If at all possible, pre-register for the event. Have reasonable expectations and be flexible. 

Make a note of the companies who will be present and do your research on them. From there, you can create a list of which employers you want to visit first and work your way down. You can also look at companies that are looking to hire here and try to find them at the job fair. This way, you will have the advantage of meeting with potential employers without alerting your current employer

Dress Appropriately

You will make your first impression on many employers, so you want to be dressed for the occasion. A good rule of thumb is to dress for the positions you are interested in. If unsure, dress more conservatively rather than casually. 


Job fairs are still a relevant method of meeting with various employers in a matter of a few hours. With that said, you must be prepared, beginning with your resume. If your resume is longer than one page, be sure to keep the pages together with a paperclip. 


About The Author

Nathan Brunner
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Nathan Brunner is a labor market expert. He is a mathematician who graduated from EPFL.

He is the owner of Salarship, a job board where less-skilled candidates can find accessible employment opportunities.