The Traditional Resume is Dead
Unfortunately it’s true. That paper resume you took so long to format, to optimize for an arbitrary page count and the one that made you condense all the hard work you do into bullet points is dead.
We live in a digital world and the usefulness of your work experience on paper is fading. Slowly but surly everything is switching online: music, books, dating, news so why not resumes? Why not indeed.
Putting your resume online opens up a whole lot of options that aren’t remotely possible on paper. The internet transforms your plain paper resume in a full out online portfolio no matter if you’re an architect, a brand manager, a designer or a student. Still not convinced? Here’s a short list of benefits of putting up an online portfolio vs. a plain paper resume:
You control what's available about you
It's becoming common practice for companies to Google potential job candidates. By having an online portfolio you can rank as the number one spot for you own name and thus control what information employers get to see first. And we all know first impression count.
Highlight more than what's available on your resume
Resumes are often 1 or 2 pages long and for most people this is not enough to encapsulate who they are or properly showcase the kind of work they can do. Sometimes your involvement outside of your resume says a lot more about the whole you than just your work experience.
With an online portfolio it’s easy to showcase all these things as you can make your portfolio display images, videos and as much text as you deem necessary to tell your story! Just look at the examples below:
For students: A lot of students list places they’ve volunteered, the sports they do or their interests but what does that really mean in context? Maybe you’ve competed in sports and this information is usually left out of traditional resumes or is mentioned in a bullet point somewhere near the end. However, the fact that you’ve accomplished success in athletics can a lot about you! You’ve got persistence, dedication and strong work ethic...all of which are qualities sought after by employers which wouldn’t be properly showcased in a simple resume!
With an online portfolio you can better market these great skills by showing your trophies and writing a short description of your experiences that say so much about you as a person than that one bullet point.
For professionals: Communication skills are one of the top skills sought after employers and thus EVERYONE is constantly listing them. So how do you stand out from the crowd? SHOW your employers that you actually practice what you preach. If you’ve done public speaking, put up a video on your online portfolio. Are you a great written communicator? Post any and all articles you’ve written or maybe even a short story!
Because an online portfolio is part of your own personal domain you're flexible to expand it as much as you want. Just a few creative thoughts and you can really put an edge to your job application!
For everyone: Showcase the books you read. What people read is often a great indication of how you think. If a potential employer is viewing your online portfolio and they notice you read what they read, this could be the edge you need to get that interview or even possibly the job!
Say you bump into someone and they turn out to be a manager at your dream firm. You don’t have a resume on hand to give them, and sure you can email them but they receive 100s of emails a day. And the worst thing is they totally love your vibe and you think you’d be a good fit in the company. By having your own personalized online portfolio you can always include your website with your email or write it on your business card. Since it's not so common you're bound to stand out AND your whole online portfolio is now available at that manger’s finger tips!
Does your email feel unprofessional or maybe you’re worried your @yahoo.com email will get filtered out of the recruiter’s inbox? By having your own online portfolio you get registered domain name so you don’t have to worry getting tagged as spam or looking unprofessional. Simply by registering a domain name you can set up an email such as firstname.lastname@example.org. This way all of your professional matters can be handled through that email. Now you look like you’re ready for business!
So how do you set up your own personal portfolio?
It is actually quite simple. The first thing you need is to register your own domain name (this is what shows up in the address bar in your browser) and then you need to get hosting (this is space on a server where you can upload your online portfolio). Next you use Wordpress, which is traditionally a blogging platform, to put up your online portfolio.
Does this sound good but you're not tech savvy enough to set this up? No problem. A lot of hosting options offer one click wordpress install. One great company that I've used in the past is BlueFur.com. They are Canadian so anyone from the states can benefit from the favorable exchange rate. What's even better is that they offer options for hosting and getting a domain name AND offer options for 1 click wordpress installations. So what are you waiting for? Click here and get your resume revamped into the 21st century!