The resume has been used as the optimum rating method for as long as we can remember, but it does not tell employers everything they need to know about applicants.
Resumes summarise applicants’ life stories and talents into barely 2 pages of words, and should not be used as the final say in making or breaking an application.
It can even be additionally deceiving when employers compare regular candidates to others who have survived multiple failures before achieving success. This video will tell you exactly why a traditional resume doesn’t work all the time.
Filtering resumes everyday can be mundane, but a good HR professional should not make the final judgment simply based on them. The best candidate isn’t always the most obvious choice, hence the screening process shouldn’t be limited to the 6-second resume rule.
Here are some valuable sources employers use to assess an applicant’s employability beyond his or her resume.
1. Online Presence
For positions requiring strong online presence, recruiters look into the candidate’s social media to gauge their online behaviour. It’s a safe bet that someone capable of leveraging on the Internet to showcase their uniqueness would be a good fit for the job.
The candidates recruiters see on resumes might turn out very different from their online personalities. While their online personas might not be entirely genuine, recruiters can obtain a more well-rounded impression of candidates and make informed decisions.
LinkedIn is considered one of the best platforms to demonstrate professional experiences. As such, an applicant’s LinkedIn profile should also be a main ‘research point’.
One of the companies that have replaced paper applications almost entirely is Jobstore, where job seekers are only required to provide their LinkedIn account to apply for a job. It’s a great example of a ‘digital resume’, which should be the new assessment tool for all employers.
2. Reference checks
No one can be 100% sure about a person’s true achievements and work ethics based on just a resume, so reference checks must not slip through the cracks. This is especially when recruiters want to get a second opinion on how honest candidates were during interviews.
Often, this step is the last checkpoint before a HR manager makes an offer, and it also serves as the deciding factor for shortlisted candidates.
In general, the most important areas all employers evaluate for references are: the candidate’s previous job duties, overall performance, strengths and weaknesses, relationships with other colleagues, and reasons for leaving the company.
3. Assessment Tests
Every profession has a standard set of key competencies that a manager looks for in order to determine if a candidate is suitable for the job.
To make it easier for the head of the department to examine an applicant’s skills and knowledge, some companies request for a portfolio as soon as they receive a job application, or conduct a quick test as a requirement for all candidates prior to the actual interview.
These tests consist of industry-centric questions and practical sessions designed to reflect as accurately as possible. By including this extra step during hiring, the employer can learn more about the candidate’s true capability to ensure they do not miss out on any talent.
As clichéd as it sounds, actions do speak louder than words. Candidates with more years of experience aren’t necessarily more valuable than someone capable of, and willing to learn.
Uncovering Talent Takes Over 6-Seconds
The next time you start hiring, try to avoid deeming resumes as unfit in 6 seconds, and then complaining about the limited talent pool.
A good percentage of Singaporean job seekers have spent a good amount of time part-timing and gaining experience, and are not as incompetent as you assume.
Think about it this way. If you are able to discover a diamond in the rough and spend time polishing it, you would have the brightest, most precious gem others only dream of having.
Look beyond a resume, you’ll recognise many talents passionate about growing together with your company.
This article was written by Linh Pham.
Featured Image Credit: myamcat, seeklogo