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How Significant Is The Résumé/CV?
By Bert Sadtler, President, Boxwood Executive Search + Contributing Editor

These are extremely challenging times for employers who need to acquire top level talent as well as for those seeking a career change. Today, companies’ economics compel them to re-assess their talent needs in order to remain competitive and drive growth. The satellite communications industry is ripe with new opportunities. Employers are challenged with making a “great hire.” For the candidate, finding an opportunity can sometimes be a rather difficult proposition.

SadtlerHead To assist with career searches, we asked Bert Sadtler of Boxwood Executive Search to respond to readers’ questions regarding the processes of recruitment and hiring as well as how Companies can retain crucially-needed talent. Boxwood is located in the Washington, DC, region and has success in senior level recruitment in satellite communications, government contracting, and within the intelligence community. Boxwood also provides a consulting solution for the analysis and improvement of the employer’s current recruitment process.  If you would care to submit a recruitment, hiring, or retention question for Bert to answer, please email your question to BertSadtler@BoxwoodSearch.com.

The résumé or CV (Curriculum Vitae) has been the focal point for interviewing within industry. Does it provide the employer with insight into a great candidate? The focus may be changing. The résumé carries less and less weight. It may eventually become a thing of the past. I say “the sooner the better.”

In uncertain times, hiring the correct talent becomes even more critical. To do it well, is the résumé able to determine the right talent? Many recruitments start with the candidate’s résumé as it has been commonly regarded as the standard document used to establish qualifications.

A very good résumé fosters dialogue. However, even a great résumé alone will not get you hired. Hiring managers are not going to extend an offer after just reading a résumé.

While the résumé lists the candidate’s technical experience and accomplishments, it provides no insight into chemistry and cultural fit. Successful recruitments are the result of hiring the candidate who meets a combination of: the minimal technical requirements AND the best cultural fit. The hiring manager and hiring jury need to spend significant time with the candidate in order to determine the cultural fit or chemistry.

SadtlerFig1 The résumé is playing a relatively small part in the total recruitment of critical talent. On a good day, it is a “ticket to the party”, leading to a phone screen/in-person meeting, or a similar next step.

Specific aspects of concern by industry of a résumé include:

A “business community” of professional résumé writers exists. This leaves the employer unsure if the candidate actually wrote their own résumé.

Candidates practice traditional interview questions, which originate from résumé content. Change the emphasis on the résumé and you also change the rehearsed answers which gives the interviewer the ability to really get to know the candidate.

Internet search engines have come on-line, which seek résumés that contain desired words or phrases. The candidate who can embed the most desirable word track will have their résumé land on top of the pile. Unfortunately, using desirable résumé words doesn’t directly correlate to being a highly qualified candidate.

A résumé by design only provides historic candidate information. Finding the right talent is less about where the candidate has been and more about where the candidate is and where the candidate is going. Good recruiting is finding out “what is going-on in the cockpit”, not “where the plane has been flying”.

Many résumés contain subjective information that provides little value. Below are examples from a résumé just sent to me. Do any of these provide factual qualifications?

SadtlerFig2 Strong planning skills
Exceptional communication skills
Problem solver
Ability to increase organizational efficiency

Sophisticated employers are moving toward conversations and discussions with candidates. You want to earn the candidate’s trust and have them relax. If successfully accomplished, the true candidate will reveal him or herself.

About Boxwood Search
There is an ongoing battle  for senior level talent. A great hire can make a long term positive impact and a failed hire can prove to be very expensive. How does a company recruit  and  hire the right talent? It is more than just networking within the community of friends and business associates. It requires focusing on results through a process oriented approach. Boxwood Search is committed to reaching a successful outcome with recruitment methods that have repeatedly proven to deliver very qualified senior talent. The firm exclusively represents employers in the marketplace as a dedicated resource and discrete trusted advisor. Through original research and industry contacts, qualified candidates are targeted and then motivated to consider the opportunity.

Candidates are screened against key criteria, technical fit and cultural fit analyzed, interviews conducted, references contacted and hiring recommendations then presented. Upon making the offer, Boxwood Search is the employer’s advocate and an active participant in communicating with the candidate until offer acceptance has been secured. Results are guaranteed.