It’s something you work on painstakingly but how much time do you think a recruiter spends on your resume? Ten minutes. Not even close. Five minutes? Actually it’s lesser than 10 seconds, according to experts. With so little time and so much to put across, it’s imperative for job seekers to make maximum impact in minimum time.
Snapchat resumes, Lego resumes, billboard resumes — there are a lot of crazy and creative things that people have done to get a hiring manager’s attention.
May be you could take inspiration from these out-of-the-box thinkers to stand out in the tough job market.
A magazine resume for a job at a magazine
Sumukh Mehta, of Bangalore, made over 160 resumes for other professionals and then decided to land his dream job. To impress the editor-in-chief of British GQ, Mehta created a resume that was an actual 20-page magazine. The resume, designed to look exactly like G had a cover page, a contents page and detailed his skills and credentials. The editor offered him an internship in London without an interview.
Distributing free doughnuts for an interview
25-year-old Lithunian Lukas Yla got a foot in the door at 10 of the Bay Area’s top ad agencies and 30 tech companies without even a portfolio to his name. All he did was pose as a Postmates delivery person and deliver boxes of doughnuts with his resumes to 40 companies. “Love creative approaches to job hunting,” tweeted Get Around founder Jessica Scorpio, one of the recipients. Yla has already had more than 10 interviews.
Google-themed resume for interview at search giant
Eric Gandhi, a Georgia Tech graduate, decided to catch Google’s eye by coming up with a resume that looks like a search page for the search giant. Within 30 minutes of sending out his resume, he was called for an interview and offered a marketing position. “There’s nothing wrong with making yourself more memorable than a couple of boring paragraphs,” he later said.
Saying it with chocolate for a research position
Renata Chunderbalsingh from Sydney, Australia, wondered how she could get her resume to stand out. “I am new to the industry, and was thinking well, ‘how can I get out there and tell them that I’m good?'” she said. She decided to appeal to recruiters’ sweet tooth, sending out her resume wrapped over Lindt chocolate bars to try and land a market research job. A HR recruiter later said this was the most creative CV she had ever received.
Using Christmas lights to make a point
Liz Hickok, a resident of Georgia, United States, used Christmas lights to spell out her resume outside her home. The lights read “My wish, HR job, Liz Hickok, Linked In”, and got her a whole lot of attention. People wrote in to her on LinkedIn and even those who weren’t recruiters got in touch to tell her about jobs they had heard of.
Buying a Google ad to reel in prospective employer
Alec Brownstein knew that the odds of getting your resume noticed by a busy executive aren’t in your favour, but he decided to take them head on. He took out Google ads with names of advertising executives so that when they Googled their names, his job request showed up at the top of the page. When Ian Reichenthal of Young and Rubicam saw the ad, which didn’t cost much, he set up an interview and hired Brownstein.
Upping the resume game to make a mark
Animator and programmer Robby Leonardi decided that a conventional 2D resume format wasn’t for him and went on to build a spectacular interactive game. “I wanted to stand out …and wanted a fun resume since I love to entertain users,” he has said. It wasn’t easy but he combined elements of game and resume, creating a series of levels to showcase his skills, qualifications, and experience.
With hundreds of job seekers vying for the same position, it’s important to stand out from the crowd. However, hiring experts believe that taking too creative an approach to the application process can backfire at times. Employers like out-of-the-box thinking, but also like to know that you are serious. So if you’re working on an unconventional resume forma, think it through before sending it out. Ask yourself questions like ‘Does this showcase my skills?’, ‘Does this send the right message for this position?’, and ‘Is this relevant for this job?’
Career coaches believe it pays to be creative. So go ahead and impress the employer; just make sure that you stand out for the right reasons.
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