Registered: Mar, 2002
Re: Are Sloppy Résumés OK?
Posted: Jul 25, 2010 6:21 AM
> Beware candidates who do it just to pay for a
> It seems entirely incongruous that a great
> > developer, (coding is just one aspect of development),
> > would represent himself as a poor communicator who is
> > either oblivious to, or careless toward quality.
> Most "resume reviews" seek only to enforce the format du
> jour. "Poor communication" mostly boils down to violating
> said format du jour. Hirers who care about such trivia
> aren't worth working for. Shallow is as shallow does.
That's not what I am saying. I stated that format preferences should NOT be misconstrued as poor communication (although I have seen some really bad formatting!).
A resume that communicates well is information-rich. It tells a story about the candidate.
> A resume's only purpose is to convey both past work and
> future efforts.
That's nonsense. First, You can't covey future efforts. I think what you mean is that the facts in a resume communicate future potential. Second, a resume is a work product - something created by the candidate - and therefore a reflection of some of her abilities. The foolish candidate may believe that the sole purpose is to document her past work, but the skilled reviewer will glean much more from it.
> That doesn't mean Joyce is a poor
> communicator, only that his format doesn't meet the
> demands of lazy readers.
Grammar and spelling are not format. Neither are incomplete sentences, ambiguous statements, vague descriptions, or missing data. What if we never found out what happened to the fisherman in "The Old Man and the Sea?" That would be poor communication. The book is about a guy and a fish, yet it is a fascinating story. The critics took a while to warm up to Hemmingway's style, but they could not deny his storytelling ability.
> Again, you really, really, really haven't defined poor
> communication in an objective way.
Communication is not objective, but I think there are some key indicators of poor communication in the context of a resume. I mentioned most of them above and in the article. If the resume doesn't convey what the user did, that's a fundamental problem. Beyond that, if the resume shows that the candidate is careless, leaves out important information, cannot put together complete concepts, and cannot convey the value he brought to positions in his job history, that's bad communication. It also is evidence of broader issues.
Final point, a well-written resume doesn't get you a job. But it may just get you to the next phase of the interview process.