by Jeff Spears
Everyone uses the cloud. Whether someone subscribes to an online storage service or he just has a web-based email account, there isn’t anyone who uses the Internet who doesn’t benefit from the cloud. It has subtly altered the entire technological landscape, and the changes only compound on each other with each passing year.
That’s good news for job seekers. Not only does the cloud make it easier to connect with employers, it may render traditional resumes completely obsolete. Things have already progressed to a point that anyone who wants a job outside of small local businesses needs an online presence to compete, and soon getting a job may be as simple as entering text into an online system.
The Advantages of Upgrading
Most people still write and distribute printed two-page resumes. This is the same formula that has been popular since the mid-20th century, and it’s what people are taught to do. This persists despite the prevalence of online services that allow people to share their career history without submitting a resume. Although the death of the resume lies in the future, the infrastructure to replace it is already there. Over 41 percent of job referrals involve online networking in some capacity, and in highly populated regions of the world where technology is extremely prevalent, a prospective employee is nothing without an online networking account.
Online Profiles Are Much More Extensive Than Printed Resumes
Resumes need to be short and to the point. Business owners and HR departments are swamped with prospects, and taking the time to read a ten page essay outlining someone’s unique work experience is a herculean task given the limitations on their time and resources. This means that job seekers need to list only the most relevant and impressive aspects of their careers, but that’s not necessarily an easy task, and the missing parts of their work history may be more intriguing to employers than what they choose to share.
Online profiles eliminate these hurdles. It’s easier to disseminate large amounts of information in a digital format. Creative job seekers can even post videos of themselves detailing their work history, and that has the added benefit of giving prospective employers a feel for their personalities and how they would mesh with their company.
Online Profiles make it Easy to Impress Employers
Crafting a well-made online profile requires a modicum of tech knowledge even if most services take care of the complicated stuff. Creating a printed resume that looks good and reads well proves that someone possesses at least basic intelligence, but the online equivalent proves that someone possesses a skill set that’s highly valuable in the new economy. Beyond that, it proves that he knows how to cater to what employers want. There’s a lot more room to impress employers with online profiles than with traditional resumes, and it’s much easier for exceptional talent to rise above the noise created by other applicants.
There’s No Need to Re-Establish Anything
Online profiles aren’t dependent on location. Someone with a good online reputation in one place will still have that in a new place, and that makes networking far simpler than it has ever been. It also eliminates the need to tailor individual resumes for different companies. Everyone has access to the same pool of information, and job seekers only need to update one profile as opposed to several documents.
Some things will never change. Human psychology works the same way as it has for centuries, and good networking principles apply online and offline. Online profiles merely enable people to speed up the process, and it won’t be long before digital resumes replace the traditional model altogether.
Jeff Spears is a HR professional.