I literally do not (and have not ever) understood the basic resume.

Why is this still a thing? In the era of LinkedIn, which is apparently worth $26 billion but has essentially no value, why are we still evaluating people off the basic resume?

I’m confused.

Then I run into articles like this one from the Harvard Business Review about how How Leading Companies Build the Workforces They Need to Stay Ahead (buzzword alert) and I see quotes like this:

The World Economic Forum predicts that “by 2020, more than a third of the desired core skill sets of most occupations will be comprised of skills that are not yet considered crucial to the job today.”

Yup — the basic resume is dead.

The basic resume and checklists of skills

I absolutely despise this concept. You ever see a job listing with 17 required skills, including pornography experience and speaking Italian, and then the salary range is $40,000? Huh?

My broader point is this: If you truly believe we live in the era of disruption and business is shifting every 12 seconds, then who cares about pre-existing skill sets?

Your job role is probably somewhat unclear anyway (that’s often the case) and will shift 21 times in the next six months, so why not go get the best people and train ’em up to the specific role? Seems more logical to me, but we tend to overrate competence in the general hiring process.

The basic resume and the ATS

Applicant tracking systems (ATS) are fu***ing miserable. So let me get this straight —  I am a relatively intelligent person, and I need to upload my resume (my basic resume!) then fill out 18 screens of information that was already on said basic resume?

We don’t think this alienates the best possible candidates? Sheesh. The hiring process is legitimately broken.

What could ever replace it?

I have a few ideas:

Here’s my point: the basic resume is stupid in the “disruptive” era. It’s just a static list of skills that indicates literally nada about how you might perform when your job evolves 27 times in three months. Kill it off and find people through discussions, non-generic interview questions, and actual recruiting work. (Isn’t that what these people are paid for?)

Any other thoughts on the basic resume aside from these 400 or so words?

Ted Bauer

Originally from New York City, Ted Bauer currently lives in Fort Worth, Texas. He's a writer and editor for RecruitingDaily who focuses on leadership, management, HR, recruiting, marketing, and the future of work. His popular blog, The Context of Things, has a simple premise -- how to improve work. Ted has a Bachelors in Psychology from Georgetown and a Masters in Organizational Development from the University of Minnesota. In addition to various blogging and ghost-writing gigs, he's also worked for brands such as McKesson, PBS, ESPN, and more. You can follow Ted on Twitter @tedbauer2003, connect with him on LinkedIn, or reach him on email at [email protected]