Do you actually need a new CV/resume?

Thursday, April 7th, 2011 - CV Writing, CV Writing Service


Do you actually need a new CV/resume?

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If you are looking for a new job, one of the tasks on your to do list is often to rewrite or get a new CV/resume. But even as a recruiter and Professional CV Writer, I question if in some cases if that is actually required?

In this post, I will outline some routes to employment, and why they often mean that your existing and dusty old CV may well already be the answer

What is a CV/resume for?

The basics of what a CV is for are quite simple: Its a factually based sales document, based around your skills and suitability for that particular job. No more and hence no less.

Outside of that, every claim that you make in your CV needs to be backed-up by a piece of evidence, either a certificate, a reference or even a piece of media (ie: press releases on national newspaper sites, or TV interviews).

Why is it essential to back and CV claim up? Because employers employ on both competency and results. So you need to be able to:
Read the advert, know that you have the skills for the job, be able to then communicate that in your job application (paper and verbal), and then have the evidence to back-up your claims.

Moving or leaving?

The first question about a career change, is are your moving or leaving your existing company or employer? If you are leaving, then you need to dust off that old CV, and start thinking about what you want to do and what your offer the market. But if you are seeking a new position within the same company, do you really need a CV to evidence your ability to do that new job?

Good career management is about showing that you can do the job before you are given the job. So if you have a career plan, and you spot your ideal job inside your existing employer, then options include: trailing the existing job holder; undertaking some overflow tasks from them; or taking a project over that evidences your capability. All of these are better and more real evidence than anything that you can write or claim on a CV.

Applicant tracking systems

I’ll be quite up front about this, but even as a former engineer, I hate Applicant Tracking Systems! I am neither convinced by the technology or the theory behind psyche testing.

But, putting that aside, most ATS’s don’t want, need or require you to create a CV. In fact they almost always positively discriminate against them. Except that the information that you had in the CV, is exactly the same as the information required by the ATS. Resultantly you need something that looks like and has the same information in it as a CV.

Sounds like a CV to me!

If you are aiming at jobs with employers who are large corporates, then you probably don’t need a CV, just the unformatted information that you would have put into one.

Networking

If the job you seek is best obtained by networking, then is a written piece of paper your greatest  evidence of capability, or the fact that you have one or more advocates saying that yes they worked with you at company X doing the same job?

Networking  will tend to find you hidden jobs more regularly, and get you ahead of the competition. If someone sits down with you over a casual coffee and asks you then to arrange a formal interview, when do you think that they will be asking for your CV? Most often in my experience, it’s an HR team procedure to have a copy on file and to get you to fill out a job application form after you have been offered the job. At that point you could almost be writing nursery rhymes, they just want to employ you!

Networking Activity

In most job seekers minds, a job search involves looking through job boards or newspapers, and then applying to adverts that you have seen. But in the past three months, six clients of mine have got employed just through social media activity alone, and specifically going where the employers are; five hence through LinkedIn.

These people were found and asked to apply for jobs – none of which were advertised – by HR people who were active on business related social media forums. They were then asked for a telephone interview, to fill out a job application form that didn’t want a CV, and then attend a job interview. They all got employed, and they didn’t even have to look through a newspaper, scan a jobs board or even it seemed need a CV

The new world of employment

There is a new world of employment appearing, and its got less to do with process and more to do with getting back to what recruitment is really about: people employing people.

This means that the old ways of doing things are being replaced by new ways of doing things. But the main issue is as always being found, and then being able to evidence/back-up any claims that you make.

Does this new way of employment means that the CV/resume is dead? No, and I can’t see it being replaced by a Video Resume until Google finds a way of indexing all the spoken words in each and every video.

What the new CV/resume will morph into is a base document of words and evidence, that can be cut and shaped as required for that system of job search, job application and personal branding. The old skills of CV Writing won’t disappear or never be needed again, its just that the format in which they are communicated will change.

Good Luck!

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One Response to “Do you actually need a new CV/resume?”

  1. Karolina Beutler Says:

    Actually hard to find familiar people on this subject issue, you sound like you no doubt know what you are writing on! Regards, Karolina Beutler

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