Home' Careers Magazine : March 2011 Educate Yourself Contents Wednesday, March 23, 2011 NEWCASTLE HERALD 21
Dare to be
LinkedIn or online CVs: Has scope for testimonial-style
recommendations from employers and co-workers,
career history and achievements.
E-portfolios: Great for creatives to showcase their
Social networking: A source for organisations to find
Video and audio CVs: Adds a personal touch.
EDUCATE YOURSELF FOR A BRIGHTER CAREER
ABOVE AND BEYOND THE CV
Career counsellor Jane Lowder identifies some
technological alternatives to traditional CVs.
IN a Seinfeld episode, George Costanza scores an
interview for a dream job with the New York Yankees.
Rather than pandering to the bigwigs in the boardroom,
he takes a chance and sets about attacking the
decisions being made by the organisation. As it turns
out, they like the cut of his jib and he's hired on the spot.
But how likely are candidates in the real world to
come up trumps by bucking convention when they
apply for a job?
The CV remains the convention when it comes to job
applications, according to the principal consultant at
Complete Career Management Rod Conn. But he said
people were getting jobs by lodging applications that
include much more than that.
Mr Conn said he was aware of plenty of situations in
which the standard CV-based application alone did not
help the candidates' chances.
''I'm a very strong advocate of getting out there and
being in personal space with people, whether it's by
making good phone calls, walking through doors and
meeting people or being introduced by other people.
''The CV is sort of a product of the advertised job
market --- whether that's online or in the print media ---
where in actual fact the majority of jobs do get placed
in an unadvertised sense, and to connect with those a
CV is pretty much an afterthought.''
Career counsellor and founder of Max Coaching Jane
Lowder said that various factors contributed to
candidates' decisions to diverge from the traditional
CV-only approach to job applications. Among them, she
says, is the arrival of Web 2.0 instant messaging, easily
accessible software such as iMovie and affordable
technology such as webcams and video recorders.
''Combine creative flair with technology-savvy and we
start to see unique forms of job application gaining
momentum,'' Ms Lowder says.
Mr Conn said the statistics he keeps indicated that
people who make applications for advertised jobs and
follow up with a well-structured phone call double
their chances of landing the job.
''People buy from people, people employ people,'' he
said. ''It's the people connection you have to get going
and a document can sometimes get in the way of that.
The document needs to be in the right place in the
process and not always at the very start.''
A paper released by HR technology consulting firm
Inspecht, 52 Social Media Ideas for HR and Recruiting,
touches on a range of ways candidates can interact with
social media to attract attention from employers.
A director of recruiting company Hays Nick
Deligiannis said it was inevitable that job candidates
would have to supply a CV at some point during the
recruitment process but there can be exceptions.
He said that his firm gets a lot of requests for
candidates and, based on a ''verbal rundown'' of their
background, he can place them immediately because
the contract and interim market is fast-moving.
''There is still a market for operating through
networking and referrals as well, but that would
probably be the first stage of a recruitment process
. . . at some stage there would still be a need for a CV.''
What about when an advertisement specifically
instructs candidates to submit applications that
include a CV and cover letter only? Do candidates
have anything to gain by disobeying the request and
Mr Deligiannis said that there were instances in
which candidates who make their own decisions
about what to submit to the employer --- beyond the
CV and cover letter --- potentially improve their
chances of landing the job.
''I think that's what differentiates one candidate
from another, if you take the time to do that,'' he
said. ''It could be giving a case study on a previous
project they worked on . . . and what the project plan
was, what the outcomes were and what their role
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