Even if a potential employer discovers you on LinkedIn, most of them will still ask you to send along your resume.
In this scenario, sending my resume may seem silly, especially if you consider the additional information that LinkedIn profiles include that resumes don’t; like contacts in my professional network and recommendations from past colleagues, bosses and clients.
While I tend to agree with Dave McClure that resumes, as communication tools, really do stink when compared with existing information on blogs and social networks, most people still aren’t on the same page.
wrote a post today about how most people remain oblivious to what all of this social media stuff is really about. Beth Harte wrote a post questioning a recent study that seemed to inflate the number of people who actually care about whether companies are engaged in social media. Lying to ourselves about the numbers or the impact won’t change things.
The bottom line is that while all of this stuff is extremely cool and does indeed have the ability to change business for the better, we’re not there yet.
Chances are pretty good that even if you’re hired to help with a company’s social media efforts, its human resources manager may or may not be the most social media-savvy person in the company. Rather than vex over the uninformed and uninitiated, the overarching solution seems to involve building bridges.
Bridges are built when we start thinking about ways to accommodate the needs of the receiver of our information with our need to flex our social networking muscle.
My friend, Ari Adler regularly insists that all communication should really be crafted with the receiver in mind. Here are some ways I think we can honor this principle and promote our social media prowess within the confines of a traditional resume:
- Start with a Word document version of your resume since that’s what most people are familiar with, but don’t stop there.
- Hyperlink all of the information in your resume that makes sense. Your name can link to your blog, and your contact information can include links to your LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, Flickr etc. profiles. Make sure that the information on the selected profiles is something you wouldn’t mind sharing with a potential employer.
- Create an HTML version of your resume and embed it into the body of your email to HR.
- Write an introduction explaining what you’ve done as if you’re explaining it to your Mom. Let them know why you think this is important. Explain your interest in sharing information about yourself as it exists online and invite them to explore these links to research who you are. Phrase it in such a way that suggests you’re trying to make their job easier.
- Attach the Word document version of your resume to your message and let them know in the introduction that a Word version of your resume is also attached. A lot of times people just want to save resumes in a predictable way or print them out. (Yes, people still print things out and make notes on them with a pen).
- Don’t expect them to click on anything. If you’re called in for an interview, don’t start asking whether they read your latest blog post or saw the pictures from your week in Yosemite posted to Facebook. Remember, you sent them an invitation, but that doesn’t mean you should make them feel obligated to check you out on your terms. Just keep inviting people to check out your work and your life online.
Keep in mind that I work in communications and that these principles may vary for different job descriptions.
My thinking is that if you want to work with social media for a living, showing and teaching others about your involvement will mean a lot more than another bullet point outlining your accomplishments. Waiting for everyone else to “get it” won’t work.
What are some other ways we can build bridges for the uninitiated? Can you think of other ways to start tweaking your resume for Web 2.0?
Employers, human resources pros and recruiters – would any of this be helpful for you? Are you using social networks for recruitment purposes? Do you still ask for resumes? How can job seekers use social media to make your life easier?