The CV versus the Application form?
When you’re looking for a new member of staff you need to have a means of finding out enough about each candidate to decide if they’re a good enough match to invite for an interview. For most organisations this means either asking for a CV or sending out an application form to be completed.
Both approaches have their pros and cons – let’s look at how they stack up.
CV Asking for CVs is easier – it doesn’t require any in-house effort in creating an appropriate application form. However, all CVs are certainly not equal!
If you’re recruiting for a creative position the people who submit unusual CVs will stand out, but that’s not going to help when you’re recruiting technical staff. Interpretation of a request in an unorthodox way isn’t what you want from technical staff so a creative CV could be a bit of a double edged sword. Does it mean they are an innovative problem solver or a bit of a rebel!
However, the way in which a CV is presented will give you a good indication of the person it represents. What’s included – and what’s left out – can draw a picture of that individual’s approach to tasks.
The biggest drawback with CVs is that it’s difficult to compare like with like as everyone has their own spin on what a CV should look like.
The Application Form
Application formA good application form is an excellent way to draw out all the information you want to make really well-informed decisions about who to interview – and who not to.
The problem with most application forms is that they tend to be ‘standard’; i.e. one form covers the whole organisation so the information required doesn’t always fit a technical role.
The other challenge is that some application forms are designed more as a personnel document than an application for employment. There are frequently lots of questions that are irrelevant to the position and/or information required that isn’t useful until that person is engaged as a member of staff.
So what’s the answer?
If you draw up an application form that is specific to each role then you’ll make the decision-making process much easier as it’s a straight comparison of like for like. If that’s not going to happen then a CV will allow the individual applicants to reveal some of their personality and approach which could help in the ‘weeding’ process.
The alternative is only to interview candidates who have been assessed externally – and if you’re recruiting technical staff we’d be happy to discuss this with you.
Edison Hill provide technically tested and pre-interviewed candidates to help clients spend less time in recruitment – and get the best possible candidate for the job. Call us on 020 3762 2020