The Resume is Dead

In the last few years, I???ve been approached a number of times by colleagues and acquaintances who are looking for new opportunities and new organisations to work for. More than once, I was asked to review their resume and make suggestions as to how it could be improved on. And the thing that always came to mind ??? the resume is dead.

Not quite so forcefully or literally dead, but by many accounts, a resume fails to provide as complete a picture of who you are or who you can be, to that very person you???re trying to impress. Certainly, in some markets and with a number of organisations, the resume is the way to go. They are happy to quite literally assess you on this piece of paper. But with the world of work and technology moving at the pace it does and how relationships have morphed alongside these changes consequently, the resume simply cannot be a complete reflection of who you are.

Whether you like it or not, there???s a whole world out there of people edgier, more passionate, highly empowered and possessing a tremendous sense of dare and courage, who are willing to go with the flow and try new things, embrace new platforms and ways of working and collaborating. Those who seek to rely only on resumes and the other traditional approaches will only see a limited world of opportunities open up to them. The platforms you choose to use and the mediums you embrace say as much about who you are as who you are not. And for that, we do need to be careful.

Just the other day, for example,  I read an interesting post about what your email account says about you. You may find it surprising to know that your choice of email account says a lot about your educational background, what industry you may be in, your age and more. Apparently people educated at university level are far more likely to use gmail than yahoo. And to think that in the days gone by, we worried more about cover letters, nifty suits and a firm handshake.

The question is whether you know that you are being assessed, what that assessment is based on and what profile is being formed of you, with or without your knowledge.


About rowena morais

Media Communications and Editorial Specialist. With my strong professional network of contacts, I help individuals and organisations, particularly those within Human Resource and Technology, strengthen their skill-base and brand through compelling writing, beautiful design, content marketing and publishing. Let's talk.

One response to “The Resume is Dead

  1. Benton Howie

    Alas, the resume is not dead. However, it is now just a piece of the puzzle that is the professional YOU. The resume tells what you are. Sorry, but as my economics professor told us, labor is a commodity. Whether you acknowledge it or not, you are selling you…a commodity. The next piece of the puzzle is the resume cover letter. I know that recruiters tell you they never read cover letters. What they really mean is that they read the resume first. If they like the resume, they will read the cover letter. If they don’t like the resume they will never read the cover letter. So, a good resume will never get you a job. But a bad resume will lose you a job. Back to the cover letter. The cover letter tells WHO you are. It is important. The cover letter is your first chance to move from the commodity bin to the person bin and should be written as if you are having a conversation with a person you would like to become friends with. The rest of the puzzle is your e-presence or e-image. It is a collage of your social networking sites, your blogs, and any opinions, posts, or any other e-utterances that become a permanent part of e-space. They are and will be searchable.So, tailor your resume for the job. Write a compelling conversational cover letter that communicates your sincere interest in the company and the job and your passion about what you do. Make the person want to meet you in person. Then you can get down to the last piece of the puzzle…the sales pitch and the close.And always remember to polish your e-image and present yourself as you wish to be viewed. The entire job search process is simply marketing and sales. And you are the commodity.Go forth and sell.Benton


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