Social Data and Mobile Diminishing the Significance of the Resume

April 20, 2013
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Although resumes still remain the gold standard of job hunting and applying to job postings, there is a shift happening. A person’s complete professional background use to be summarized in 1 or 2 pages of a perfectly worded resume with an objective, work history and references and maybe a cover letter. This was the only first impression that a prospective employer had prior to contacting the candidate. The access to Social Data that employers have is painting a much more accurate picture of candidates and is becoming the first ‘filter’ in the evaluation process.

Social Data isn’t just a person’s work history on LinkedIn but a Complete Online Identity & Reputation of interests, blog posts, blog comments, g+ author rank, videos, photos, Tweets and followers with photos being the quickest destroyer of online perceptions. The first step in crunching Social Data starts with a name search on Google. The results will show blog posts, comments on blogs, news article and press release mentions, videos, pics, social media pages and suggest related searches to the search query. Yahoo results show YouTube videos that a person is tagged in and their top paid search result has a company offering criminal records.

Something else employers are considering when evaluating search results isn’t WHAT they find but what they DON’T find. If they are looking for an expert or authority in a certain profession and the candidate is nowhere to be found on blogs, blog comments and they don’t follow any of the relevant groups on LinkedIn then it shows that this person really isn’t that dialed into their craft.

Twitter data really sheds light on a person’s interests and a typical day. Followers, following, tweets and retweets shows if a person is ‘into’ their profession and what outside interests they have.  What time of day a person is tweeting let’s an employer know if this candidate is dedicated to their current job or job hunt during office hours or just wasting time tweeting about Call of Duty. A recent post, ‘Social Data will replace the Resume,’ gives details on how the top social media platforms can impact a job hunt and what employers are looking for when evaluating a candidate’s online identity.

big data mobileMobile and the challenges for job seekers to apply to a job posting from their phone adds to the trending decrease of the importance of a resume. Sarah Halzack with The Washington Post recently posted details of how tough it is to apply to jobs via a smartphone due to the lack of a mobile friendly job application process at most employer’s career sites. Attaching a Word doc or pdf resume from a mobile device isn’t simple and given the attention span of someone browsing from their phone, the application bail out rate skyrockets.  A mobile visitor’s pageviews and pages-per-visit is typically 50% less than visitors from a computer so if you have their attention and they are ready to apply, the window of opportunity is really small.

Big Data, Analytics and Technology job site icrunchdata has seen a 15% increase in mobile and tablet traffic in the last 6 months and Gartner is predicting a 69% increase in tablet sales this year. The shift is on to Mobile and employers getting a deeper view of job applicants prior to their first email or call. Job seekers still have control of their own first impression but it starts with a Google search, not a handshake.

(big data mobile / shutterstock)