There is much debate currently flying around over the longevity of the CV in its traditional format. With video CVs and cloudbased presentation software such as Prezi bombarding the market, candidates are called upon to dream up increasingly innovative techniques simply to get in a look in at a vacancy. 

Add to that soaring jobless figures and the high volume of applicants for each role, why submit a standard CV? There’s no stronger deterrent to a recruiter than a pile of CVs listing one set of job duties after another.

The CV is surely dead, isn’t it?

No.

But it is evolving.

For some companies, video CVs and their ilk smack of gimmickry. While popular and understandably relevant in the design and media sectors, the bastions of industry and boardroom generally prefer a more traditional approach to job applications. Video CVs and software presentations have their place, especially in a global market, but they ultimately need substance to back them up.

CVs provide a marketing platform for candidates. Websites and job boards such as Monster and Total Jobs offer facilities to upload CVs allowing employers to create specific candidate searches at their leisure. In the US the majority of hires are made from job boards and job sites, utilising CVs.     

Having said that, the one size fits all CV of old isn’t the whole story in today’s market.  The CV is the starting point, the door-opener, but recruiters in particular automatically expand their search to incorporate social media and more specifically Linked In profiles in search of that elusive top performer.

An up to date version of a CV on LinkedIn has become a pre-requisite to a job search for hopeful candidates. It’s current, easily updated and most recruiters automatically check out an applicant’s LinkedIn profile if they are interested in learning more.

Recruiters also stress the need for highlighting achievements, not simply providing a list of job descriptions. What has a candidate done, what can they bring to the potential employer? Where have they made a difference?  Video CVs may put a candidate at the forefront of the recruiter’s attention with their unorthodox approach but recruiters will still, generally without fail, request a CV.

So, will candidates who purely use the standard CV lose out on roles?  Not as such but they need to stay alert to relevant industry trends.

There’s an exception to every rule of course. High performers blazing a trail in their current roles don’t necessarily need a CV – their reputation precedes them. On the ball recruiters know who they are; CV or not they are highly sought after by employers and agencies alike.   

The great CV debate will undoubtedly continue to rage but as yet there is no universal replacement.  A CV remains the candidate’s bedrock for a job search. While the CV as we know it may be experiencing a transitional phase it will continue to evolve. The CV remains one of the most fundamental tools in the recruitment process for candidates and companies alike.  

The CV is dead, long live the CV.

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