Has the Paper Resume been forced into Unwanted Retirement?

Thanks to social media (LinkedIn) I didn’t miss a current Wall Street Journal article discussing the death of the paper resume (http://on.wsj.com/wftqlx). So is it true?  Is the paper resume obsolete?   Yes.  As a staffing partner, I always hand them back to candidates I meet at career fairs or Wired4Hire seminars and gently ask that they email me a copy.  Why?  Because that paper resume has little chance of leaving my roll along brief case which houses my laptop, iPad, and other electronics.  Our entire recruiting process is now online.  But this is only part the reason why a paper resume is no longer going to get you a job. 

While the need for a chronological history of one’s work will always exist, it is not sufficient to be competitive in today’s high tech, immediate social and professional networking world.  Now your complete resume, or better yet curriculum vitae – which is a Latin expression loosely translated as the course of my life,  must include such basics as having a robust LinkedIn profile complete with at least your last three positions, (provided you have been in the work force that long) references, and a sizable group of connections.  It is also useful to have a website and blog, as well as an active twitter account.  Facebook with its latest introduction of the Timeline feature is making its way to the top of the resume checklist must haves.  Why?  Because Facebook is quickly bridging the gap between a place to share your life with friends and family to a place where you sell your services or products to a raft of adoring followers made up of a blend of your inner circle and people with professional interests similar to yours. 

Is all of this really necessary?  Have we been reduced to what we were in high school?  A realm where the jocks, brainiacs, gear-heads, and geeks all have their own circles?  Yes and before you cringe it is a good thing for your career, whether you are looking for a job or to advance a business.  Now both who you are and what you do can make you desirable to your employer.  This is why the death of the one dimensional – one page resume is a good thing.  How can you possibly express all of your talent on a single sheet of even the highest grade paper? 

Companies want to meet you before they actually sit across from you.  They want to be able to do this by viewing a picture of you on LinkedIn.  They want to check out what you do for fun on Facebook.  They care how well versed you are in your field.  They will read your blog – and they want to see how well you present yourself and what you do in a video blog. 

Technology has forced the paper resume into unwanted retirement.  It is also compelling people to use social media to market themselves visually and in a professional yet personal manner.  This process will prepare people talk to anyone, prospective employers or relatives, about the course of their lives.  This is not the wave of the future.  It is the wave to ride right now.  The new norm is a three dimensional resume, using multiple media platforms.  People who adopt this new resume format will have an absolute edge over their competition.


Gretchen Gunn

MGD Services Inc.

Office:  877-643-8378

Mobile:  973-945-9817






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