Weighing the pros and cons of resumes and LinkedIn

08.22.2014


Weighing the pros and cons of resumes and LinkedIn
Weighing the pros and cons of resumes and LinkedIn when job searching

When you're job searching, there's an increasingly difficult divide that's been created by technological advancement. Many applicants are likely wondering what the advantages and disadvantages of writing a traditional resume versus placing all of their emphasis into the perfect LinkedIn page may be. While the question is less black and white than selecting one service and ignoring the other, there are elements of both that need to be considered.

With the recent growth of LinkedIn in the global scale, its rigid framework gives resume-focused applicants a new advantage, according to The Huffington Post. Out of thousands of resumes and LinkedIn profiles in the market, the ones that get noticed are the ones that buck tradition, without necessarily changing too much. This doesn't mean that they completely throw out the usual frameworks, but instead take a simplified approach to their past experiences.

One of the best ways to do this is in the summary. Some people believe that the summary is out of fashion. But in reality, it's important as long as it's basic and easy to communicate. If you want to hook people with your experience, achievements and ambitions, this is where you do it. Employers want to know what you can do for them, so giving descriptions of your skills is necessary. But you should also use that time to show why you deserve your next opportunity. Try turning a long summary into a short one that only focuses on the most important skills you possess.

Inward versus outward

Where LinkedIn comes into play is not as a competitor, but a complement, to the current resume, Youtern added. This is because while a resume is an outbound marketing tool, one that sells your skills and experiences toward a specifically chosen audience, your LinkedIn profile is an example of inbound marketing. It's an outward representation of your career so far, where people searching for specific skill sets or professionals will find you. As such, the best of both worlds in this situation is for you to use the two services for different uses. That will go double when working with staffing experts, who will be able to help you distinguish the best highlights on each side of the resume.

One of the best ways the two can coexist is that one attracts others to you, while the other helps you attract others. For your attempts to find a job, your resumes are almost volleys out to hopefully receptive hiring managers, and as such they can be a more direct and actionable plea. LinkedIn, however, allows for more subtlety. You can't exactly send resumes out publicly, as current employers would notice and would likely not be happy. That's where LinkedIn shines. The right updates on your digital platform can send the suggestion that you're looking for more without directly advertising your searching status. In other words, your resume is your direct search approach, while your LinkedIn is an indirect tool that plays a supporting role.

When in doubt, take a risk

The Huffington Post noted that nearly 90 percent of applications are now sent online. This should lead you to try to get noticed when you're looking for your next opportunity. In doing so, the news source recommended taking new steps, such as hand-delivering resumes, to enhance the first impressions others make of you. Of course, in many situations this will be difficult, if not impossible. But if there's a certain situation in which it may help you out, you should at the very least try.

If all else fails, use your LinkedIn and your resume in tandem to better promote yourself. People will want to see what you're made of. It will be a simple prospect to advertise your best aspects in these ways and in others as well.

Job Search