In some sectors – such as the arts and creative industries – the rules on how to write a resume are flexible. It’s acceptable, even applauded, when candidates for graphic design or videography roles send their resume guised as a creative example of their work – such as a movie trailer or magazine layout.
Yet as the job squeeze tightens in sectors such as media and the public service, some job seekers have taken to sending ‘wacky’ CV’s in a desperate attempt to stand out from the pack.
According to one HR professional at online discounts website Groupon, ‘wacky’ CV’s can lead to interest on behalf of the employer. One example was an application from an Oxford graduate who sent a parcel containing a light bulb and their business card. The light bulb contained an address to a website and said “I have an idea for you”. The link displayed relevant information on the candidate as well as a mini presentation on his CV. HR at Groupon considered the resume more than a novelty, and in fact an example of an innovative idea.
Nevertheless, extremely wacky resumes leave many in HR with their eyes rolling. For one HR professional, receiving some such resumes can be enjoyable, but only for the entertainment value. “I wouldn’t accept a gift no matter how small – it’s all about perceptions.Anything too fancy wouldn’t move me to give it any more credence than other efforts, and may distract from the message a candidate should be getting across, i.e. why I am the best person for the job,” Damien Sloane from Calvary Silver Circle Community Services told HC.
For Sloane, receiving a thank-you note after an interview is more likely to be an interesting point of difference. “I did once get a thank you note that prompted me to re-interview a previously rejected candidate. I employed her but it was the simple fact that she actually took the time to write the thank you note in the first place that kept her in the contest,” Sloane said.