Mises Wire

A
A
Home | Blog | Forget the Résumé

Forget the Résumé

January 25, 2010

An applicant’s résumé used to be everything. Type “resume writing” into the search line at Amazon and 4,468 results appear. Book after book containing hundreds of pages each, instructing the reader as to how he or she should put their best foot forward in a page or two.

Now it turns out some firms don’t even want to look at your resume. Instead of requesting résumés, Union Square Ventures asked applicants to send links representing their “Web presence,” such as a Twitter account or Tumblr blog, instead. Applicants interested in the investment analyst job should also send the company short videos demonstrating their interest in the job, reports the Wall Street Journal’s Rachel Emma Silverman.

A résumé doesn’t provide much depth about a candidate, says Christina Cacioppo, an associate at Union Square Ventures who blogs about the hiring process on the company’s website and was herself hired after she compiled a profile comprising her personal blog, Twitter feed, LinkedIn profile, and links to social-media sites Delicious and Dopplr, which showed places where she had traveled.

Ms. Cacioppo says, “We are most interested in what people are like, what they are like to work with, how they think.”

StickerGiant.com founder John Fischer uses online surveys to screen applicants because résumés can’t determine whether an applicant will be a good social fit.

Companies are being inundated with résumés and many run them through applicant tracking systems that weed out unqualified applicants without the use of human time and judgment. The WSJ’s Lauren Weber explains,

today’s tracking systems are programmed to scan for keywords, former employers, years of experience and schools attended to identify candidates of likely interest. Then, they rank the applicants. Those with low scores generally don’t make it to the next round.

Picking employees that will fit in with a company is critical as government mandates and employment laws have made firing someone expensive and difficult. Also, it’s not cheap to hire people. Weber writes,

the costs of hiring a new employee, which now averages $3,479, according to human-resources consulting firm Bersin & Associates. Big companies, many of which cut their human-resources staffs during the recession, now spend about 7% of their external recruitment budgets on applicant-tracking systems, the firm says.

Even at small companies only 19% of hiring managers review all the resumes and 47% say they review but a few.

Of course one key piece of information included on a résumé is college degree. As firms use technology to screen applicants and select employees, how long will it be before having a degree doesn’t really matter?

Follow Mises Institute

Add Comment