Refresh Your Resume: Four Alternative Resumes to Invigorate Your Job Search

Apparently resumes are a hot topic with guest bloggers on genpink lately. OR maybe resumes are just a hot topic in general at the moment as it appears the job market is picking back up. Who knows. I’ll leave you that to ponder while you read this guest post from Brendan Cruickshank.

Always keep your resume updated

Another day, another resume. Or to be more accurate, another ten seconds, another resume. That’s how headhunters and recruiters start to feel after a morning spent viewing one resume after another. If I’m looking at four cookie cutter resumes, I don’t know who to bring in for an interview. After a while, those perfect “play by the rules” resumes all look the same.

But do they have to?

Depending on your situation and the type of job you are looking for, you may be able to do something more creative with your resume. You can join the growing trend of people who are finding ways to personalize their resumes by taking a different approach. Below are four options you may want to consider. They aren’t safe, conventional approaches to resume-writing. They are bold options that show a recruiter that you can take some initiative and you aren’t afraid to take a risk.

A slideshow resume.

You can put together a slideshow presentation using PowerPoint, or you can use a website such as Sliderocket, Slideshare, or Prezi to store a slideshow. A slideshow presentation shows that you know how to use PowerPoint and other slideshow software, and it is the ideal way to present visual information. Certain kinds of creative portfolios, for example, could be presented in a slideshow format. Another option is to include slides showing yourself at work in different workplaces that are listed in your resume. Seeing you at work, even in a still photo, can give a recruiter a better sense of your personality than seeing your duties listed as bullet points on a resume. In a slideshow, you can still list your duties as bullet points if you wish – in the margin, next to the photo. Don’t turn your resume into a slideshow, however, if you do not have any visual information to present. If you do, you will be requiring a human resource manager to take more time to load the resume on a computer without providing any additional information to make it worth the trouble.

A video resume.

You can make your own video resume and load it at your website, or at a site such as YouTube or Vimeo. You can also try using one of the new sites that lets jobseekers make their own video resumes, such as,,, or I wouldn’t bother with a video resume if you are applying for a job as a bookkeeper. But if you are looking for a job in sales or marketing, a video resume can be an awesome way to show your charisma and creativity. Make sure the audio and video quality in your video resume are perfect, though, or your video resume may make you look incompetent rather than independent and ready to take initiative.

A creative portfolio.

A creative portfolio is an excellent choice if you work in a creative field, or in a field where you provide a product. You would choose a creative portfolio rather than a video resume if you want to showcase your actual work, not you and your personal charm. A portfolio can be presented in a slideshow or video format, but does not have to be. You could have hard copies of your portfolio that you send out via snail mail, but that could get expensive. A better alternative is probably to keep samples of your work online in a location where potential employers can view them, such as at your personal website. If you choose the website option, you should be sure to also include at your website all the other information that should be part of a resume, such as your contact information, education and work history, and references.

A reverse resume.

A reverse resume is a very risky choice, but some daring job hunters are trying it. In a reverse resume, you break all the rules. Instead of using a neutral, professional voice, you might write in a personal, somewhat chatty style. You could tell your favorite joke or anecdote. Or you could focus on what you are looking for in an employer, rather than concentrating on the attributes that you yourself bring to the table. A reverse resume can be on paper, or it can be a video or slideshow. If this option appeals to you and seems to express your personality better than any other option, all I can say is, you know who you are! If you have doubts about this approach, don’t take it.

Don’t take my advice without thinking it through for yourself. (That’s what leads to cookie cutter resumes!) You should know what kind of resume is appropriate for your field – and if you don’t know, then you need guidance from a mentor, but that’s a subject for a different blog post! Think about the kind of resume that is the best fit for the kind of job you are looking for. When you’re ready – go for it!

{are you interested in guest posting on genpink?}

Brendan Cruickshank (Vice President of Client Services) – Brendan is a veteran of the online job search and recruiting industry, having spent the past 8 years in senior client services roles with major sites like and He is quoted regularly as an expert in employment and jobs trends in major media outlets like the Washington Post, US News & World Report, and Forbes and has spoken at recruiting industry events such as Onrec and Kennedy Information’s Corporate Recruiting Conference.

8 thoughts on “Refresh Your Resume: Four Alternative Resumes to Invigorate Your Job Search

  1. Brendan: There are other video resume sites ( that help candidates create an entire digital video profile in lieu of a “paper resume”. Video alone won’t cut it. Candidates need the entire arsenal. Check us out!

  2. When I changed even from a plain old Word resume to a non-conventional design, I got a TON of interviews right off the bat…Now to have a good looking resume in general is not enough…everyone’s catching on…I guess I might try a new approach!

Comments are closed.