Should Resumes Move with the Times?
Every so often as technology moves up a notch, there is talk of the resume becoming obsolete. So how important is a resume these days? A written document of work history with dates, places and duties? Surely not in this day and age! After all, job seekers have an array of powerful, highly visual and easy-to-use ways to get employers’ attention. Think video, PowerPoint, social media profiles such as LinkedIn. It is certainly true that some professions need the ‘bells and whistles’ of visual cues. Graphic designers are an obvious example of that. But resumes remain the one highly effective tool that enables employers to quickly filter sometimes hundreds of job applicants down to a select few.
Are Resumes Old-Fashioned?
There is also the simple fact that moving away from the tried and trusted resume could result in your application being discarded at the first hurdle. With many applications to read, and with scanning technology to detect industry keywords being in common use, do not make life hard. For example, these may work in the creative field, but it will never become the norm. Firstly, most of them only work in the physical space, and even if they were sent electronically, the flood of fonts used would automatically prevent the scanning software from working and would get you automatically rejected. PowerPoint is great for presentations. Sending your resume as a .pps file is not so clever.
First impressions count – the impression a potential employer will have of you will depend on how you present your resume. This is either going to be your only chance to capture a potential employer’s attention or for your resume to be tossed into the file of those they do not want to pursue.
How Important is a Resume?
Millions of employers accept the traditional-style resume. It quickly paints a picture of ‘you’ the individual – who you are, where you have come from, where you want to be going. And it is also easy for recruiters to absorb, compare and contrast. Employers have created entire systems to manage and evaluate resumes fast; they have a vested interest in encouraging a relatively uniform style. This speeds up the filtering process. Ultimately, you can rest assured that there will be no migration to a new common standard any time soon.
There is Still a Lot of Room for Manoeuvre
In a competitive job market, you need a professional resume that that will stand out from the crowd. You will be amongst countless other resumes that potential employers will be looking at, and you need the best possible chance of getting their attention. You have to remember that you only have mere seconds that the potential employer is going to be taking to glance at your resume. Your resume must represent all your years of work and study properly.
There are many different styles of resume. The most common and accepted is the chronological resume. This format lists your most recent employment (or education) first, with your jobs appearing by date in a reverse timeline. This is the traditional resume format and places more emphasis on job titles and employment history over skills. Chronological resumes generally work best for job seekers with a stable career progression in one or two fields. These are best suited to job seekers with a stable work history.
The functional resume will focus more on skills and achievements, rather than job titles and places of employment. Functional resumes give you an opportunity to show off your skills and experiences. They are best suited to graduates and those making a career change. They are also good for those re-entering the job market after an absence or if you have large gaps in your work history.
So how important is a resume these days? Very – and you cannot afford to leave the content to chance. That is why Select Resumes exists. We have helped literally 1,000’s of clients to get to the front of the queue marker “interview”. And we achieve results by knowing the employment market inside out. Many of our staff are ex-Human Resource personnel, so we know what works and what does not. The resume is here to stay; we will help you make yours count.