Will the Paper Resume Become Extinct?

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By: BrightMove Recruiting Software

Technology constantly improves the way we consume information. Just like the computer killed the word processor, are paper resumes going extinct with the invention of fancy software and social media sites like LinkedIn? As a recruiter, you may be weary of losing the traditional resume, but also excited about new ways of evaluating a job seeker.

Perhaps you have grown tired of pouring over the same cookie-cutter black and white resumes formatted in a boring Microsoft Word template. Nowadays, candidates need to go that extra mile to capture your attention. A well-designed resume with complementary colors and telling images can attract the right recruiter’s attention by showcasing a candidate’s personality and skills in a new and unique way.

While not every job or industry is receptive to an outlandishly artistic resume, most recruiters agree that a well-thought-out graphically designed resume will get you further in the interview process than a lackluster, plain text resume. Why? Because the candidate is putting effort into their job hunt early in the game. It also shows the job seeker’s creative side and his/her ability to stay current with industry trends.

Take a potential employee’s job experience for example.  Instead of him/her listing career after career in chronological order with staple bullet points listing job functions, wouldn’t you like to see a map or infographics that turn standard information into a colorful historical exploration?

You probably don’t realize that you are filtering out resumes that are difficult to read or that are too text heavy. That is because resumes that are aesthetically pleasing are more appealing to the eye and keep you more engaged. Pay attention to formatting, layouts, fonts, and structure of a candidate’s resume. If they have a strong attention to detail and a creative flair, it will show on their resume. If you are enticed to read their resume now, you will most likely be compelled to interview the candidates and hire them.

You are in the business of hiring people so it makes sense that you want to read a resume that feels personal. A graphically rich resume can humanize the candidate with a professional photograph of his/her profile. Also consider candidates that add interesting images to their resume that correlate with their industry or profession. Candidates who go above and beyond expectations are passionate about what they do.

Make sure the visual resume is thoughtful and strategic. Ask yourself, what kind of message is the candidate trying to send through his/her chosen images? Beware of poorly designed resumes, which can do more harm than good. First impressions still count in the visual world. For examples of visual resumes, visit: www.pinterest.com/rtkrum/infographic-visual-resumes/.

Some candidates are moving away from paper resumes all together and opting for pre-recorded digital resumes. According to an article in The Wall Street Journal, video résumé sites like BriteTab.com, OptimalResume.com, InterviewStudio.com, and ResumeBook.tv allow job seekers to build and publish video resumes.

No matter what your preference is regarding resume formats, it’s important to note the various ways candidates are trying to get noticed and grab your attention to land that interview.

1 Comment

  1. Don Alexander on August 17, 2012 at 7:59 am

    Good article but I would differ in opinion and/or keep a boring text version handy. The reason being is that many search firms and larger employers keep database logs. While the creative intent can surely allow one to stand out, too many graphics 1.) ultimately drive up the cost of data storage 2.) aren’t always “searchable” (consider the inability to search a graphical interpretation, for instance). The differentiating factors in the fields in which I recruit tend to be: 1.) If one’s accomplishments and responsibiltiies are clear and in chronological format. 2.) If the resume is well written and succinct.

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