graphicsresume.jpg(Updates with jobless figures for NJ)
Going by statistics, with one in ten people in the US currently out of work (more if you include freelancers and part-timers), there are scores of people out there perusing job ads and sprucing up resumes. The number is similar in New Jersey, with unemployment at a 32-year high, says. But a lot of the effort going into one’s paper curriculum vitae could be a waste of time, according to Elizabeth Wasserman who wrote this story. She says:

Landing the hot job interview these days calls for a multimedia presentation, also known as a digital portfolio.
A digital portfolio allows you to bring your old paper or electronic r√©sum√© to life. And since you’re not limited to the traditional single-sheet r√©sum√©, you can include photos of your work, video clips of you receiving awards, copies of your letters of recommendations, and more. A portfolio — either stored online or on CDs or DVDs — allows you to develop a self-portrait that makes a stand-out first impression.”

One site that makes this a breeze (and is free and easy to navigate) is LinkedIn, used widely for professional networking. Just plug in your career and education details, photo, honors, awards and references and voila, there’s a one-stop shop for, well, you.
Montclair resident David Levy, 40, a sponsorship management director and father of three boys who is in the market for a job, was sent this almost-disheartening link by a friend as an example of the ‘perfect’ resume. That CV, while perfect for a graphics-related job, isn’t for everyone, but you get the (elaborate and detailed) picture.
Says Levy, “It’s probably not for the traditional industries. I haven’t found headhunters advising me to come up with that (sort of resume) and find LinkedIn more than adequate.”
This doesn’t mean he shies away from a tech-savvy presence, either.
“Your digital life is now visible to everyone, when you add an email signature line, on Facebook, Twitter, blogs, I still make sure I put these out there because it helps them (prospective employers) know you better. You have to use caution too, because it’s so public,” says Levy.
Too right. See the trouble this NJ blogger has gotten into.
Are you looking for a job? Talk to us about your experiences. Has technology worked for (or against) you?
(Photo/Bart Claeys/Flickr)

Reuters editor, food blogger, photographer, diva of the domestic arts

11 replies on “That Paper Resume Could be Passe (for Some)”

  1. Depends on the job.
    Having sat on more selections committees than I can to discuss, when I see a bulging folder, my stomach turns.
    Because if you have the credentials, they will show up rather easily and simply in a short cover letter/resume. And as Obama has showed us, even a rather thin resume, if it includes the right schools and associations, etc. folks will give you a chance.
    Perhaps once the field is narrowed and some demonstration of work is needed, THEN, if asked, you can follow up with more. But the thought of slogging through various internet links and confusion just to learn something about a candidate is far too much for me— unless they are one of the finalist.

  2. I have friends at a few different companies who have had to hire everyone from secretaries, computer programmers, and video editors to sales managers and junior vice presidents.
    When I last had to go job shopping (about five years ago… knock on wood) the one piece of advice that all 4 of these friends gave me was this: Keep it short.
    It seems that the general consensus in HR departments is if the resume is more than two or three pages long, it will most likely end up not getting looked at.
    During the interview process, however, you should bring all three rings and as many clowns as you can fit into the car.

  3. LinkedIn is good for networking, digging up old school/business connections. I have a pdf of my resume/portfolio (I am a designer) available to send out. I keep an email of them sent to my self saved on my email account for easy access. I also created an online porfolio at Coroflot.

  4. Ugh. The idea having to look at such a self agrandizing, “look at me” multi media display for job candidates make me ill. Perhaps if you were applying for some super creative, production type job, but otherwise, its just such an over the top self important display. Just show me you can do the work.

  5. While some employers may go through the effort to Google your name and follow some links, Facebook has plenty of privacy controls to manage who sees what. Their default setting is “everyone”, so it requires you to take the active step to change settings in multiple places. And you can also de-tag yourself from any unprofessional photos that other people have uploaded and tagged you.

  6. So-called “multimedia portfolios” have been around as long as multimedia became a buzzword back in the early 1990s for creative professionals who used Macromedia Director and autoplay Powerpoint presentations (now Flash websites are the vehicle of choice). But for everyone else, the resume, whether on paper or a PDF, is still the standard for employment consideration. And nothing will replace your verbal skills and body language when you go to present yourself in the interview.

  7. It kills me how people get hung up on format. Why someone would deny a potential candidate because their resume came on paper is beyond me.

  8. A digital resume is a good way to seperate yourself and your skills from the casual computer user. This is a way to eliminate the professional assistance people get from remume writing firms, as a great presentation would be worthless if the person can’t discuss how they put together said presentation.
    I’ve spent a lot of time and money on my skills so this is something I am working on and will have available when/if my resume is called upon.
    Personally I think resume writing firms are the same as hiring someone to take your SAT’s. Being able to find google doesn’t qualify anyone to do much of anything professionally. And once hired it is very difficult to fire someone because their skill set wasn’t as great as advertised.
    Right now the idea of a printed resume is slowly fading away. How many out there have their resume on a flash drive with them at all times? I do and I’m not even looking for a job.

  9. I am reminded of a rather “Mad Men”-like incident when I was commuting into New York from Connecticut. An enterprising job-seeker set up a little stand on the Westbound platform of the Darien station offering 25-cent martinis to commuters returning home in the evening; but you had to take a copy of his resume with your cocktail. He wasn’t there very long, so I assumed he found a job (or was arrested for selling alchol without a license).

  10. A professional resume writer cannot (or at least should not) make you seem more than you really are. But he/she can present your abilities and background simply and correctly (as in n-o-o-o typos) in a style and format that will not be automatically rejected. I was a partner in a Boston-based resume writing / job placement service, and we constantly sought and applied feedback from both our candidates and the companies to which we presented them. Surprisingly enough, we spent more time getting candidates to stress their successess and abilities than we did trimming back hype. People are sometimes their own worst critics. But a large percentage of the added value was giving a candidate a readable, coherent document that presented their skills in a manner that allowed them to comfortably talk about their abilities and qualifications during face-to-face interviews.

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