Learning to network

February 1, 2007

Cornering the UK skills market by standardising CVs

Filed under: career, Self-marketing, Technologies — Arthur M. Gallagher @ 2:51 pm

I’ve come across a few tools that suck in my resume, and try and populate it into a standard format, with varying degrees of accuracy. I don’t know if any operator intervention was involved in creating my iProfile, but its at least a 90% true reflection of the CV it was based upon. In fact, if I was almost tempted to just leave it as it was – I’ve been to interviews in the past and seen the version of my CV the agency has sent to the client was a complete desecration of my original proud document.

Still, a number of agencies I have recently contacted about roles seem to use the iProfile, so I decided to find out a little more. Since 2002 SkillsMarket have been offering UK agencies services based around the iProfile. The value proposition for agencies is clear – how much time did it used to take their staff to “normalise” information on candidates skills into their own databases (and as I saw at those interviews, how low could the quality get during the copy-transfer) Now a computer does the grunt work, the job-seeker does their own polishing, and all the recruiter need do is keyword search. OK, I’m not saying that’s easy, but its a darn sight better than preceding it with an hour or two of tedious copy an paste per every single candidate, multiplied by every single agency that job-hunter contacts.

Ok, its YET another profile to add to my burgeoning collection, but given a year or three this kind of thing will hopefully become widespread. With any luck the markets could drive some consolidation, and maybe we’ll eventually see an open source standard (just one, not ten different ones 😉 ) that defines markup for resumes and skill/experience-based profiles. Then it’ll be up to candidates to focus on brand development and recruiters to become project and business development consultants. You can tell I’m an optimist, but its nice to have happy thoughts when your looking for work.

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