Hiring: Picking the Right Resume

by / ⠀Startup Advice / October 17, 2012

If you are currently hiring for your start-up that means either two things have recently occurred; you recently lost someone or you realized you’re missing someone you need on your team. What follows these two scenarios is probably a job posting through whatever medium has proven to be useful for the company in the past. A job posting usually brings on applicants with applicants then comes resumes. Mission complete! However, when is anything ever that easy? In reality this is just a quarter of the battle. Depending on the position, pay, demand you may get a ton of resumes or maybe just a few however the process of filtering them usually stays the same.

Regardless of who your target applicant pool is let’s face it most of the resumes you’re going to receive are going to be awful. The reasons why vary and have a lot to do with the fact that some people just never learned how to create a decent resume. An applicant may think because he/she is a “marketer” they can be super creative and use a script font along with a weird color resulting in an unreadable resume. Other applicants may not even read the job post and submit their resume just because they want a job.

My particular resume reviewing process goes as follows. I begin by doing something I call the three towers better known as the yes, no and maybe pile. This process has become more refined for me in the last couple months after looking at so many resumes.  With time you become better at evaluating resumes and separating real skills from (lack of a better term) bullshit. Applicants usually begin in the “No” pile and transition to “Maybe” and “Yes” if worthy. Landing in the no pile is usually due to inefficient experience. The “Maybe” pile is usually applicants who have a ok resume “But” have something in there that causes me to question them working out at the company. A good example is many short spans of employment. Landing in the “Yes” pile means that this applicant is a good fit on paper he/she has the skill and experience to back up filling this particular position. This is followed by a phone call or a email on behalf of the company to the applicant.

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I’ve learned it takes experience to be able to look at a sheet of text and determine if someone on paper is worth even sitting down with. Being an Ed tech company much of my hiring involves engineers. In their particular case many of them feel it necessary to use their resume to list off every programming language known to man.  It usually doesn’t take long to find out that they only really use one or two and just happen to have done a project in the past and came across a few others.

The hiring process can be extremely tough. To me resume reviewing and hiring in general is very much like playing the lottery. Most of the resumes you receive will not be good however you still continue to invest your time and money hoping that at the end your investment might end up being rewarded. Still in the end it’s all a gamble because you have no clue as to how things are going to turn out.

There are many steps to hiring; there’s interviewing, paperwork, payroll. This is about getting over that first hump when finding that right person which begins with picking the right resume.

Emilio Estevez is the CEO & Co-founder of Cosiety a collaborative community for college students to learn and share. Emilio has won and participated in various entrepreneurship competitions in NYC and as a college undergraduate and business leader and advises many early stage entrepreneurs.

About The Author

Matt Wilson

Matt Wilson is Co-Founder of Under30Experiences, a travel company for young people ages 21-35. He is the original Co-founder of Under30CEO (Acquired 2016). Matt is the Host of the Live Different Podcast and has 50+ Five Star iTunes Ratings on Health, Fitness, Business and Travel. He brings a unique, uncensored approach to his interviews and writing. His work is published on Under30CEO.com, Forbes, Inc. Magazine, Huffington Post, Reuters, and many others. Matt hosts yoga and fitness retreats in his free time and buys all his food from an organic farm in the jungle of Costa Rica where he lives. He is a shareholder of the Green Bay Packers.


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