For years we’ve been speculating about the inevitable end of the resume as we know it. It’s clear LinkedIn is all grown up. So here we are, in 2017 and the end of the resume is nigh (finally!).
The purpose of the resume has been to help hiring managers understand your career journey, not just the jobs you’ve had or been in. What’s great about LinkedIn is it’s less subjective, cuts to the chase and provides an opportunity for you to flaunt your experience whilst being realistic. Wonderfully designed resumes are pretty nice to look at, but given LinkedIn’s standard structure it means you can read Richard Branson’s resume the same way you can read mine.
It’s official, applying without a resume is becoming a ‘thing’. With the debate at an all time high, here are the 4 reasons to throw everything you know about resumes and their role in job applications out the door.
1. It’s not just LinkedIn…social media is your resume
One of the best job applications which found it's way into my inbox read a little something like this:
“Hi Ruby, I like what you guys have to offer. You seem like a great crew (watched your YouTube video) with a nice reputation around town. I’ve attached some links for you to get a bit of an idea about me…
Thanks for checking me out - hopefully there’s alignment to what you’re after out of a Software Engineer. Once you're done stalking, I’m looking forward to hearing from you”
One of the best things about this kind of approach is it’s real. None of the must have structure of a resume required. Your socials are the raw you with all the street cred employer’s are looking for.
2. It forces you to be creative
For those who argue LinkedIn profiles are too prescribed, it in effect will encourage you to stand out. A fun and engaging headline or profile summary can be more valuable than a highly designed resume.
I’m seeing the rise of some great online ‘resumes’ and portfolios through personalised websites. So if you’re still keen to flex some creative muscle think about linking this via your LinkedIn account too under ‘website’!
3. It’s timely
Most employers are now accepting LinkedIn profiles in place of a resume through their applicant tracking systems - just PDF your profile. Employers who advertise via LinkedIn can also accept your profile as an application (how cool is that - no more double ups!) And the best part?... you can instantly apply when you see your dream role with an up to date LinkedIn profile.
No more fussing over word docs, formatting, deciding which font to use… you have your career profile published and ready to go.
4. Short and simple
LinkedIn has word limits! Oh thank the universe. Fare thee well oh 20 page CV’s. Each section as set out by LinkedIn limits the writer to 2,000 words. Still incredibly generous to describe your role, responsibilities and wins. It’s a great way to keep things on point, simple and targeted. Each section is also easily definable - “Summary, Experience, Education, Volunteer Experience” - when resumes start to define their own sub headlines it can get a little tricky to understand your key message.
There are 3 golden rules to keep in mind when using your LinkedIn Profile for job applications.
- The cover letter is still queen. If you’re using this approach, you have to make sure you’re saying hello with a super special cover letter, or an email, even a hand written note! If you’re halving your time in writing a resume, you should be taking some extra care with a killer cover note. If you have specific examples you’d like to highlight (which may not be on your LinkedIn profile, this is the place to highlight it). My principle here is to write with purpose and personality - more tips here.
- Much like buying into a brand, employers are looking to invest in your personal brand. Did you know the number of social media users is now into the billions. Billions! Yikes that’s a lot of content and a lot of noise. When putting yourself out there, especially as a recruiting opportunity - be authentic and speak in your voice.
- Know the industry you’re applying to. The software engineering world for example would welcome this approach with open arms, even respect your bold approach. However if you’re in a more conservative industry and you may be in for an instant rejection email.
At the end of the day, you may still require both your resume and LinkedIn profile. If you need a little help shaping your resume or creating a blend of both your social profiles and your professional experience check this out. Let's really get serious about making your resume count in an age where social trumps EVERYTHING. So what do you think? Is the industry you're in ready to ditch the resume for a social profile?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ruby Lee is one of Australia's best known recruiters, facilitators and career branding specialists. Her mission to to help 1,000,000 lives find direction and and purpose in their career. She runs a career focused community at www.thecareersemporium.com. You can contact Ruby via ruby@thecareersemporium or Twitter @rubyleecareers.