In a Forbes post, Dan Schawbel, who specializes in personal branding, predicts your online presence will replace your resume within 10 years. He recommends you get started now so you can better control the information potential employers find about you on the Web.
He suggests you start by creating a personal website at yourfullname.com and also create vanity URLs at sites such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.
Schawbel gives five reasons to focus on your online presence:
2. Traditional job-hunting methods don't work anymore. In a separate Forbes piece, writer Susan Adams refers to a survey that found just 23 percent of job seekers found work through ads. But people have been saying that for years. I would argue that traditional methods do work, namely networking face to face. But that requires a huge amount of effort. Adams also quotes Orville Pierson, author of "Highly Effective Networking: Meet the Right People and Get a Great Job," saying:
If you're the hiring manager, your first choice, your safest choice, your best bet, is to hire someone you already know. Your second choice is someone who is known by someone you know.
3. People are managing their careers as entrepreneurs. He says the younger generation, especially, knows there is no job security and tend to start side businesses to supplement their low wages. I wrote yesterday about Peter Weddle's post called "The iPhone Proposition," which states we all have to be like Apple: We must work continuously to stay ahead of both our competitors' capabilities and employers' expectations.
4. The traditional resume is now virtual and easy to build. He points out that there are so many tools online, such as LinkedIn's "Resume Builder," that make online resumes so easy that there's no reason anymore to create a resume in Microsoft Word. I'd second that, having just built an online portfolio for a family member using Krop. These tools make it easy enough that people who are not website designers can do it.
5. Job-seeker passion has become the deciding factor in employment. He says that through these sites you set up, you can totally target and display what you're passionate about, helping companies easily determine whether you'd be a good fit.
The problem I see with the Schawbel piece is the advice I hear over and over that you need to create custom resumes to address the specific position for which you're applying. And you might want to leave some information off to apply for certain jobs. To me, these sites sound like the static resumes you send out to hundreds of potential employers, most likely not really connecting with any of them.
Yes, you can create some really cool digital resumes, but you still have to sell your ability to solve the specific problems of a specific company. You can do that by connecting through recruiters online. Intuit's Chris Galy offered some suggestions for doing that in this post.
What do you think?