Yes I have said it. Poor marketing really if you stop reading about now, but the truth is the resume WILL NOT get you the job.
I am comfortable in saying this. And I even make no qualms about confirming this to a client when asked why I cannot provide a guarantee of a job with my resume (not just for the reason that the ACCC don’t let me!) but a resume is not going to do the interview for you!
The purpose of the resume is to get you to the interview. It is now part of a suite of tools needed to get you to the interview and includes online profiles, cover letters and recommendations/testimonials. It is still the most important of these and widely used, however it now has some support when used properly with the other tools. The resume as a document changes on a regular basis, a reflection of the dynamic labour and employment market effectively, but also a reflection of the increased use of online e-recruitment and application tools. These changes may amend the style and format of the document, and to a degree the style of the content, but the purpose of the document remains the same. It is a marketing document. As an organisation has a marketing document for a service or product that they deliver, you have a resume that needs to achieve the same but to a different audience. The resume needs to focus on the benefits that you bring and the evidence that can support the fact that these benefits are tested and proven. It needs to demonstrate your greatest strengths, and the reason why people have “purchased” your product and services in the past. It can use recommendations and testimonials to support your words; but these should be different to those that are included on your online profiles. Once you have all of this together, and are effectively summarising your brand benefits, you will have a tool that can be used to support your approach to the job market.
If you went to an organisation and asked them, does your brochure sell your product? A naïve reply might be a yes, but when you start to delve into this you will see that what sells the product is a whole selection of minds putting together an approach and then marketing this approach to their core demographic with the use of their marketing tools. This being said, as the consumer you are not aware how much happens around the marketing document to make it so enticing and engaging so from your perspective you may believe that it is only this document that is marketing to you.
This is why the resume won’t get you that job. The resume is only used to market you to the market and it is what happens around this marketing document that helps you in securing that new job opportunity.
Next time you look at your resume, or start writing a new one, or even talk to professionals such as myself to support you in your career, think about what I have said here and ask yourself, what are my benefits and successes that I need to sell to the market.