It’s Time to Rethink the Resume. There Are Much Better Ways to Evaluate Candidates.

job applicant passing her documents
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on

The following is an excerpt from CareerGig CEO and Co-Founder Greg Kihlström’s article on

It almost goes without saying: When you are reviewing candidates, you want to see their resumes. The resume is probably the most consistent component in the recruiting process, the only truly universal ingredient across companies and roles of all kinds.

Yet despite its ubiquity, the resume is a deeply flawed method of evaluating candidates. At best, it is only a very small piece of the puzzle when it comes to making the right hiring decision.

The Resume Is Stuck in the Past

The resume, otherwise known as a curriculum vitae (or CV) in some circles, is a relic of an earlier age when the majority of people stayed at a single job for long periods of time. Project-based and freelance work where nowhere near as commonplace as they are today. Because of this, resumes that show a candidate has hopped from job to job every few years don’t reflect well on the applicant, according to conventional HR and recruiting wisdom.

And yet, job-hopping resumes are increasingly common. These days, the average employee’s tenure at a company is shorter; it decreased from 4.6 years in 2014 to 4.2 years as of January 2018. Very few positions offer pensions, the cost of living is rising faster than wages, and renting is common. In other words: The idea of long-term full-time employment — and the stability associated with it — is dead.

There are jobs in which even four years is considered a long time to spend in one role. Take marketing leaders, for instance: The median tenure for a chief marketing officer or equivalent role was about 30 months in 2019. Try explaining a series of two-and-a-half-year stints to a recruiter who isn’t keeping up with the latest statistics!

And we haven’t even accounted for the growing freelance economy yet. As of 2019, 35 percent of US workers were engaged in some type of freelancing, and that number is projected to reach 50 percent of US workers by 2027. Compare that to the 7 percent self employment rate of 1977!

Read the rest of the article on