The Technical Resume

The Technical Resume – Analyzing the Technical Resume.

This is an Except from Chapter 2:

In Chapter Two we discuss the Technical Resume. Though recruiters scan through tons of resumes on a day-to-day basis, it’s still important to identify and analyze the selected ones for answers—answers to questions identified from the job requisition. This chapter also looks at the correlation between the resume and job description, how to identify and avoid skill embellishment, and how to ask questions identified from a resume.

The Technical Resume. What is a resume, and why is it important? It’s a candidate’s product information, their brochure of services, their billboard, and the closest way a recruiter gets to know a person without actually meeting them. The resume can be an ally when written properly and can be an enemy of progress if written badly.  As a recruiter you have probably seen hundreds of resumes and can readily rate them “good,” “bad,” and “ugly” at a moment’s glance. There are some resumes that jump out at you saying “Look at me,” and some that plainly just whisper, “You can pass me by now.”  When you look at a resume, there is some information you want to immediately see in the first page—information such as contact information, job title, summary of skills, and education.

In this chapter we break down a resume, making sure that all the parts that make up a resume are available, and we create questions from the resume; resumes almost always have unanswered questions when reviewed for a specific job requisition. We will also make the correlation between a resume and the job requisition and look for skills embellishments or “orphaned skills”—skills with no accompanying experience. Yes, a hiring manager may be happy to know that a candidate has experience in SharePoint Server, but he also wants to know where the candidate got that experience aside from their home server network.

You will learn how to create verbiage or content for those skills that may have been omitted from the candidate’s resume but of which the candidate actually has professional experience. This chapter will illustrate how this can be accomplished with authenticity.

Decipher the Resume

Reviewing a technical resume for a specific job requisition becomes easier when you have gone through Chapter One of this book, where the job requisition was reviewed, and the hiring manager has answered some questions about his needs in relation to the requisition. We will review the resume in Figure 2.1 for the .NET Developer—SharePoint Consultant position shown in Chapter One.

 The bottom line when reviewing a resume for a match with a job requisition does not begin and end with technical skills. Yes, it may start with the technical skills, but other things are as important as the skills match. With all this in mind, let’s take a look at the parts of this resume that include the candidate’s overview, skills summary, education and certifications, and professional experience.

Correlation between the Requisition and Resume

As a recruiter you may send a job description to a candidate requesting their resume in return. Some candidates may, upon reviewing the job description, update their resume to match the skills set on the job description. This is usually not an issue; sometimes it takes a job description to remind a candidate that she has experience in an area she may have omitted in her resume.  When it becomes an issue is when you identify sprinkles of the skills in the job description but no experience to substantiate the skills.

Let’s take a look at the job requisition presented in Chapter One, and compare it to two different resumes.  One may have sprinkles of skills with no evidence of experience, while another has the skills backed up with experience. When reviewing a resume, it is not enough to accept the summary of skills (list of all technologies used by the candidate) as evidence of experience.

The technical recruiter should use the same summary of skills as a basis for an interview or conversation with the candidate. If a skills summary looks similar to an excerpt of Amber’s resume, as shown below in Figure 2.2, with no references of the same skills in the professional experience section, then you must find out more.

For more, see Technology Made Simple for the Technical Recruiter