Is the CV still relevant?

With everything being on-line nowadays and the force and reach of social and professional networks do you really need a CV? We have been asking candidates for CV’s since I was in short trousers and everybody seems to have one, whether well written or not. Lately, we have been starting to get applications and emails from candidates that refer us to their LinkedIn page or personal website and do not attach a CV.

The job sites sell themselves to recruiters on the number of CVs they have: some, for example, say they have 11m live CVs, but how many of these are out of date or redundant as a document? And can one site really have one third of the UK working population on their database?

The CV is supposed to reflect your career history and background to enable a recruiter to make an informed judgement on whether to invite you for interview. However, too many are poorly written, do not include key information, and are not honest - if you have left your ‘current employer’ recently or even six/nine months ago, it is not your current employer - so are they worth it?

We haven’t seen much evidence of anything taking over from the CV and it seems the humble Application Form is not yet making a full comeback. Some firms do insist on you filling in their on-line forms, rather than sending in your CV, but in our fast moving, want it now world, would everyone have the time and motivation to fill them in, particularly when they have their own CV anyway?

Is your LinkedIn Profile your CV? The answer is no, but a quick read of many Profiles shows that the individual thinks it is! As with a CV your Profile needs maintaining and updating and recent changes to your employment adding to it: many individuals do not bother with this and whilst LinkedIn sells itself as a place to find a job and be found for a job, I would guess that the number of ‘live’ up to date Profiles is considerably less than 100%.

There does seem a disconnect between the technology savvy generation, who want fast feedback and quick decisions, preferably on-line, and the ‘seasoned’ recruiting manager who still likes a CV and takes his time with the recruitment process. Perhaps as CRM systems and recruiting software gets more widespread and sophisticated (and also more user friendly) the need for a CV will start to disappear. But for now you still need one!