To some organizations what they see in the first glimpse at a resume is everything! Ironically, I see hiring managers who take only seconds to glance through a resume and then pick it apart. Managers throw out resumes for reasons like:
- The person doesn’t have a particular skill because the buzz words are not listed.
- Complain that other resumes are too long.
- A missed comma, or changed font formats.
When reviewing resumes, keep in mind that people:
- May not be that good at writing a resume. Most people are not professional resume writers. When recruiting software developers, I often see some of the longest resumes that are not very well done. If length were one of the knock out factor some GREAT candidates would be passed over.
- Can only put so much in the resume if you want to keep it to a reasonable length. When looking at a resume, the key is to look at what IS in the resume. If you find certain nuggets the task is then to take some time, pick up the phone and spend 15 minutes with the applicant determining if the other traits or skills exist to warrant further action.
The key to reviewing resumes is to:
- Get on the phone and talk to the candidate for a few minutes. Ask some key questions that get to the heart of what you are looking for if a resume shows any potential. Then, make a decision about whether or not to pursue the candidate in greater depth. I see lousy resumes all the time from IT and engineers. If I threw out every lousy resume from an IT person or an engineer I am convinced I would never talk to a single applicant.
This process takes TIME! Time may be money but so is passing up a great candidate or picking the wrong one. I can tell you that as both a “headhunter” and employee retention expert. If you pass on candidates because of the points I have mentioned, you will find yourself struggling to find the talent you need as labor becomes a hard to find in the next decade.