Management Update: The Evolution of a Resume

Miguel erinos online resume has the usual rundown of work experience and education. But the University of Miami senior music performance major takes it a step further by letting visitors listen to his tracks, read critics’ reviews, see a list of upcoming gigs and watch videos of his performances.

"It’s the first time I’ve had my own website that I’ve put some work into," said Merino, 22. And it’s worth the $20 a month as a personal promotion tool, he says: "It’s super important."

Merino was pushed to create the site, migimusic.com, because of a class assignment. But multimedia resumes work for more careers than those in the performing arts.

Recruiters say having a professional online presence is becoming more crucial. Vital bits of information on candidates are found through Internet searches as the market shifts to passive recruitment, and Google searches as background checks have become common in the hiring process.

Paper and electronic resumes are not extinct, but they are only the beginning. Getting a job offer may depend on social net- work profiles, personal websites, blogs and YouTube videos. It’s about your online footprint and the management of your personal brand.

Joe Laratro, President-elect, South Florida Interactive Marketing Association (SFIMA), has been hearing the term "reputation management" tossed around recently in marketing circles.

Do you know what comes up when you do a Goog1e search on your name? Reputation management is getting the links you want people to see to show up on top.

"You don’t want someone searching your name and seeing you passed out drunk somewhere," Laratro said.

And if you think bosses aren’t searching for information about you, think again. A November 2007 survey by career media company Vault reports that 44 per cent of employers are logging on to sites like MySpace and Facebook to examine the profiles of job candidates, and 39 per cent have looked up the profile of a current employee.

"There’s no doubt that myself and my team certainly scour the Internet for the past experiences of an individual," said Dan Alpert, a manager at the digital marketing services firm Avenue A Razorfish, and President, SFIMA.

"You want to be very sensitive to what type of brand you put forward – one’s own personal brand identity. If it’s not tasteful, it shouldn’t be online." But you don’t have to be a Web whiz to create a professional online identity LinkedIn.com is a social network that revolves around making business connections and updating resumes. Creating a profile there is a small step in boosting your online professional appearance. "If you are in the professional world and you want yourself to be seen by the best companies out there, using a social net- working site is almost as important as having a degree," said Dion Taylor, an account manager at Technisource, a Fort Lauderdale, Fla.,recruiting firm.

About 30 to 40 per cent of the resumes Taylor’s department gets have some sort of Web link, and he says clients are clicking on those links. He’s also seeing more people turn in video resumes. Many of them, however; are lousy "Most of the ones we see are just YouTube-ish. They put on a shirt and tie. My name is Bob. My strengths are this," Taylor said. "I think a lot of people miss the mark with them."

Recruiters interviewed have all said the same thing: Having a video resume alone doesn’t make you more likable or stand out more. If anything, it can be risky

Charles Caulkins, managing partner at employment law firm Fisher & Phnips in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., lets his corporate clients know that by accepting videos or photos they open themselves up to the possibility of accusations of discrimination based on looks. He added that having applicants fill out a standard application makes it faster to review them all. Videos, he said, could be a deterrent to a busy recruiter who may think, "Now I have to click on this video. How long is it?

Are they going to get to the point?" "I think HR people for the most part are sticking with the tried and true, sticking with the paper resumes or electronic PDFs," Caulkins said. VisualCV.com, a site that hosts free multimedia resumes with videos, suggests in its tips guide that an online portfolio shouldn’t take the place of a traditional paper resume and application. Louise Kursmark, author of the guide and President of Best Impression Career Services, wrote it’s best to think of an online resume as an add-on for networking and a relationship builder, so bias shouldn’t be a concern.

Debra Bathurst’s human relations team at Oasis Outsourcing in West Palm Beach, Fla., sifts through social networks when head hunting, especially because the market has shifted to passive candidate recruitment, she said.

"We would be behind if we weren’t using LinkedIn or ZoomInfo," Bathurst said. But she added that much of her candidate base still comes from job board sites and employee referrals.

a Courtesy: McClatchy-Tribune Information Services