Why Resumes Might Be Ineffective: A Better Strategy

April 08, 2021

are resumes ineffective

As work culture sees significant shifts towards hybrid work models, remote teams, and the gig economy, we explore if the traditional resume has the same value it once did – or if it's becoming obsolete.

Should recruiters still be placing the same weight on resumes, or are there better strategies to find the right talent?

Why resumes might be obsolete

There are four core problems with resumes:

1. They invite unconscious bias.

It's human nature to make assumptions and judgments. Applicants often include their age, gender, and sometimes a profile picture. This makes hiring without bias almost impossible.

2. The standard resume is static.

A static historic snippet of information might not convey the full potential of a candidate's performance in a role.

3. Candidates can lie.

Lying on your resume is not uncommon and can be a tricky thing to spot. This could lead to hiring an unqualified candidate based on skill sets that have been falsified or exaggerated.

4. They are weighted towards experience over skills.

The core purpose of a resume is to provide insight into a candidate's past work experience. But it's not always easy to assess skills within those previous roles.

With recruiters and HR teams having to sift hundreds of candidate applications for some roles, these 4 core challenges might cause major problems when shortlisting candidates.

This can be highly costly for your team if you hire the wrong candidate.

Do resumes matter anymore?

If lockdown has taught HR and recruiters anything, it's that technology is changing the way we hire. Tools like Zoom and Microsoft Teams have enabled remote hiring across the world.

Pre-employment assessment platforms are helping to streamline hiring processes and remove unconscious bias from recruitment. Shortlisting candidates is becoming more budget-friendly and making it quicker to build teams. The future is looking more efficient and smart with AI in recruitment.

So where does the resume fit into all of this?

While we think parts of the resume still matter – such as work history, work portfolios, and a formal way to apply for roles – we believe companies are adopting a "show me, don't tell me" approach to qualifications and skills.

The focus will be weighted more towards skills over experience, and pre-screening tests will be more important than ever.

What does a modern resume look like?

If recruiters are placing less weight on resumes and more emphasis on testing skills like situational judgment and cognitive ability, modern resumes might start to function very differently.

Here are three ways they might evolve:

1. Digital applications over resumes.

Say goodbye to PDFs and hello to LinkedIn and online job profiles.

2. Skill-based tests over work experience.

Every job you apply to will have a competency-based skills test. These will help employers shortlist candidates based on skills.

3. AI over human judgment.

Our final prediction is the increased use of augmented intelligence. AI will enhance decision-making and remove unconscious biases from the pre-screening recruitment process – and ultimately build better teams.

Could there be a more effective method for screening candidates?

There are many recruitment tools available that are providing better ways to screen candidates than the typical resume recruitment process. These tools are enhancing decision-making, remove bias, and saving employers time and money.

Should resumes be a deal-breaker when hiring? We think they shouldn't. Although resumes are still important, they are not always necessary when hiring top talent.

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