Applying for jobs online has common benefits and challenges.
On the positive side:
- Speed: You can search, sort and apply for relevant positions quickly.
- Updated Information: The latest positions are often updated in real time.
- Customization: You can quickly tailor resumes to particular positions.
Unfortunately, the same speed and efficiency often bogs down an application process. A skills based economy should narrow the applicant field for many positions.
However, there is little barrier to applying for explicitly unqualified applicants. XYZ certification required? Why not apply? The result is recruiters with resume blindness, with reams of bullet points and text blurring together.
So, how can we set ourselves apart in a crowded field of job seekers? A visual resume may be an effective solution.
Visual Resumes with Pinterest:
The advantages of infographic resumes include:
- Eye Catching
- Information Packed
You can convey lots of information in a concise format using Pinterest. For instance, your education can be the school mascot or symbol. A block M or Longhorn logo is more noticeable than saying: The University of Michigan or Texas.
Similarly, pictures of companies you’ve worked at (or logos) or volunteered will more easily catch a recruiter’s eye. Your technology skills, languages and hobbies can all be visually displayed.
This past summer, Executive Producer Elliott Broidy used infographics to raise awareness of youth homelessness. The topic captured attention with Pinterest in ways that data filled reports could not.
Best Practice: Use the text box to describe how each picture is relevant to your qualifications. The picture pin captures attention, but you must still show why the image is relevant. Some examples are:
- Education: Graduation date, Degree, GPA
- Work Experience: Job Title, Date Employed, Summary of Duties, Accomplishments
- Skills: How you have used the skill or certification
Difference in ‘The Hook’ between Pinterest and Standard Resumes:
With a Pinterest resume, you use images to draw attention and text to reinforce interest. Conversely, a standard resume relies on the reader to scour through text and bullet points to gain interest.
Can you see how using Pinterest helps overcome ‘resume blindness’? A visual resume is very refreshing to recruiters with glazed eyes.
Separate Business and Personal:
Managing your online reputation and professional brand should separate personal life. Your personal pins should reflect the same responsibility a resume does. You can still have fun, but keep posts interesting or light hearted. Pics about politics, racy photos or drunken escapades should be avoided.
Employers and universities often turn to social media for a snapshot of applicants. Keep this in mind when posting to your personal accounts.
Things to Consider:
Manage Your Settings: Become familiar with how to remove past pins. You may consider a ‘Secret Board’ for past pins. This board will only be seen by those you invite.
Here’s how: Hover over pin >click Edit>edit the description or delete>or choose a new board to assign the pin.
Best Practice: Use the same discretion for other social media platforms. (Facebook, Twitter, Google + etc.)
Increase Exposure: Consider including a link to your visual resume on:
- Email Signature: Business owners can use links in prospect emails to show their experience in an easy format.
- LinkedIn: Makes it easy for recruiters and business contacts to see what you offer.
- Standard text resumes: Some companies specify a Word format resume. In these cases, you can include a link that allows a recruiter to visit the visual resume if they choose.
Customize Your Resume with Personal Interests:
Yes, it is important to separate business and personal life. However, certain interests may enhance your qualifications. Your volunteer efforts or hobbies show a well-rounded applicant.
Showing the Humane Society logo or Wall Street Journal symbol under an ‘Interests’ infographic is more effective than burying these brand names in a text resume.
A skill based economy and tight job market makes it essential to set yourself apart. Pinterest is a time and cost efficient way to distinguish you.