I am waxing nostalgic. What is it about the past that keeps us in it? Or keeps us reverting to it or better yet, avoiding it? Do we value it as history and what we can learn from it or is it simply too difficult to let go? From reviewing a résumé to conducting professional reference interviews, we are often drawn to the past and what we can learn from it. There has been a consistent message afoot, as of late, that the résumé is dead.



That's right, I said it. I know many people will be offended or want to tear my head off, but I know I am not the only one saying it or rather, repeating it. As a matter of fact, back in 2007, Michael Fiore set the death tone in his white paper, "The Traditional Résumé is Dead..." I think I can hear a fugue playing in the background. Fiore states, "As the volume of résumés increases, the quality will not – this is, in my opinion, an inevitable result of human nature. With such a huge volume of incoming résumés and applicants, it will be virtually impossible for humans to physically sort through the number of résumés that will be received." Oooo, was he foreseeing the future? He then goes on to praise applicant tracking systems. Of course, that was two years ago..., oops, there I go digressing to the past, again.


Think of how much technology has altered the state of business. Do you use the same tools that you used five years ago? I hope not. When was the last time you actually applied for a job through your own website or someone else's? Have you tested the process to make sure it is clean, clear, and that an applicant isn't getting worn out or feeling dejected by the process? How do you review a résumé? Are they a waste of time for you and do you rely more on the phone interview or first on-site? Do you follow the words on the paper or do you follow your gut?

While the title may seem a recruiter revolt, Kristi Daeda concludes her article, The Résumé is Dead with, "Until more corporations, and their recruitment systems, embrace the social media revolution, the paper résumé is here to stay." A challenge to Daeda's statement is as simple as applying for a job online..., no paper involved there. Most organizations now require a potential candidate to fill out an application online prior to even the first interview.


A friend of mine applied for a position last year that required her to give her social security number and bank information before she even spoke to a representative or recruiter. She walked out. Can you blame her? No one had even shook her hand and she barely received a hello before a clipboard was shoved across a desk to her. Sounds to me like a death, of sorts. But what has really died?
Make sure you are grieving the right loss.




"It's never safe to be nostalgic about something until you're absolutely certain there's no chance of its coming back."~Bill Vaughn



by rayannethorn

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Who says the resume is dead?

The top .1% of the top 1% of people who write articles or primarily e-source using Twitter???

Now that's a tipping point!

The sad fact is that few people have resumes that give the recruiter and hiring manager what is needed to make a decision; even superstars write resumes that require extensive reading between the lines - heck, some of the worst resumes are written by position seeking recruiters!

"Resume experts" with no experience in a function or sector assist people in conjuring up works of fiction replete with more filler than fact eliciting from many now this looks good which perpetuates the myth. The real shortfall here is that hardly anyone puts the work in to define what issues are most paramount within their job search sphere so the resumes continue to speak of old accomplishments rather than new possibilities. What I mean is that when I'm coaching someone, I will take six months of related functional and sector magazines and with the person review these to identify the hidden issues (or smack in your face issues) that will define the area during the next business cycle. The resume and search strategy is then built around these issues. Not an easy or quick approach...

So when Fiore writes "Fuzzy logic and Boolean search systems have rendered the old fashioned resume silent as it is often lost in a sea of applicants" and being pretty darned good at using fuzzy logic and Boolean search systems, I'm left curled up on the floor laughing so hard that my abs feel like I've been through my daily workout thrice over.

Don't blow taps yet...

As for your friend, I'd proffer that the free market system comprised of passive and active job seekers will decide whether the policies of this one company are deserving of the best people. No one died but one company did decide how it wants to be perceived. That's all...

Nice post.
My favorite part of your post................

A well written, hardcopy resume will always be a part of a job search and interview process unless we get to the point that interviews are done online using a chat program with no personal contact between the candidate and the recruiter or the hiring manager. If we get to that point we will only need robots ,so the only interview question would need to be , "how are you programmed?" or "Are all your parts in working order?" (EEOC would probably consider the second question as discriminatory.

I agree and I love the humor!

Sandra McCartt said:
Having reviewed a lot of the online applications and hardcopy apps that companies use it may not be that the resume is dead. It occurs to me that the format will be forced to go to a standard that will have the information in the order that the ATS can parse. Most of the systems that my clients are using ask that resumes either be attached or entered into said box or by the time the online application has been completed the candidate has in fact written a short form resume. Entering "see resume" ensures that the application will not process.

Candidate name, contact, education, experience by date in descending order looks to me like a chronological resume in the most readable form without all the functional buzzwords that make the current trend in resume presentation so time consuming to review. The current ,wretched ,functional format requires a full time data entry person to get information into an ATS ,so form adjusts to the relative simplicity of technology... Back to the future. Back to the original purpose of a resume before resume writing became some sort of attempt to put lipstick on a pig. Back to more of a data sheet or chronological resume. Thank you technology.

Resumes are not dead ,in my opinion, but the flowery , functional format with a page of meaningless stuff may certainly be gasping it's last breath. It seems to me that as we emerge from the mess of this year that the resume is not the only thing that is moving to a leaner, more transparent, consise, clear and understandable way of doing things. For some of us it is back to the future that took advanced technology to get us there with more efficiency at the end of the trip.

A well written, hardcopy resume will always be a part of a job search and interview process unless we get to the point that interviews are done online using a chat program with no personal contact between the candidate and the recruiter or the hiring manager. If we get to that point we will only need robots ,so the only interview question would need to be , "how are you programmed?" or "Are all your parts in working order?" (EEOC would probably consider the second question as discriminatory).

In my opinion technology can not replace people but it can certainly get rid of a lot of irrelevant people noise. 140 characters anyone! Interviewing without a resume is like taking a cross country road trip without a map.
Better yet would be:

Trial atty no longer seeing red*won $1.4 mil judgment last week*22 yrs exp*hire me or else

Heather Bussing said:
Here's my Twitter resume: Menopausal trial lawyer. 22 years experience. Obtained 1.4 million judgment last week.

Everything you need to know in less than 140 characters.
Ah the days when women scented their resumes with perfume...

Heather Bussing said:
Thanks. Probably not collectible.

But good to put on my 140 character resume.

And that is exactly the problem with resumes-- whether it's twitter, cream linen paper or ATS format. The scratch and sniff is everything.

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