Digital Organization: Create a clickable resume!

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In Michigan, unemployment is somewhere between 15 and 20%, depending on who’s collecting the data.  Consequently, there are a lot of stories in the news about job fairs, interviewing techniques, and resume advice.  After reading several of these articles this week, I thought clickable resumes would be a good topic for this week’s OYDS task. A clickable resume (CV or portfolio) is not only a great way to increase your visibility on the web, but it will also provide you an easy to access place to store all the little pieces of information that you need to keep with your professional history.

Ideally, you would start this project with an updated paper-version of your resume or vita, but chances are you don’t have one of those laying around just waiting to be used.  In that case, at least begin setting up the structure so that you can begin tracking your professional history online from this point on.  To “fix” the missing information, you can simply place a disclaimer on the bottom of these pages for now, and finish updating them at some point in the future.

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Perhaps you’re not convinced … you think you don’t need to keep track of your professional history online?  Consider the following list:

  • Conferences that you’ve attended (with web links to the conference pages)
  • Presentations that you’ve given (with web links to the presentations and/or event websites)
  • Publications (with web links to abstracts, or full-text versions, or a place to buy the publication)
  • Design Portfolio (with web links to sites or projects you’ve designed)
  • Contact information (Twitter, LinkedIn, email, etc.)
  • Educational background (with web links to the departments where you graduated, links to thesis or dissertation information, links to capstone projects)
  • Teaching Experience (with links to course webpages or departments at colleges where you’ve taught)
  • Work Experience (with links to companies you’ve worked at and major projects you’ve been involved with)
  • Professional Activities (the stuff that doesn’t fit well elsewhere, courses you took, conferences you organized, etc.)
  • Community Service or Volunteer Experience (with links to the appropriate organizations and events)
  • Awards and Honors (with links to appropriate press releases, articles, or websites)
  • Featured (sometimes you get a mention in some video or article, in which case, wouldn’t you like to have that on your resume complete with link to the item?)
  • Endorsements (I often ask participants in workshops to write a short blurb to recommend the workshop or presentation to others, I collect them on this page)
  • Frequently Asked Questions (because you can only answer the question “Do you sleep?” so many times before you just want a web page that answers the question for you!)

Every item on the list above has a digital trail.  If you’re only keeping track of these things on paper, you’re missing a lot of information.   If you’re not carefully tracking all these links somewhere, you’re going to start losing them.  Incidentally, you can find examples of almost all of these types of pages under the ABOUT menu on my website/blog, TeachingCollegeMath.com.

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If you already have a clickable resume/vita/portfolio online, then you should consider this a gentle nudge to make sure (a) that it’s current and (b) that you’re not missing some of the details of your professional history that you could be tracking.

Even if you’re just a student with little work experience, you should start a clickable resume/portfolio.  As you create work you’re proud of, you can include it in your online portfolio.  You might find that the need to fill up your pages creates the urge to volunteer to help at events and activities that will beef up your “experience” section.

If you don’t already have a resume/vita online, you need to decide on a format.  The most commonly used platforms are websites or blogs (although I think a wiki would work well too).  If you’re nervous about creating your own webpage, I’ve found that Google Sites is extremely easy to use.  In one of my math classes last semester, every student had to create a clickable resume/portfolio as a final project – we used Google Sites (here’s an example) and it took about 5 minutes of lab time to get everyone using it.

So, get started on your clickable resume, CV, or portfolio.  Your site doesn’t have to be finished, it just has to be set up so that you can begin collecting new information from now on.  At first this is a task under Digital Organization, but after that, it moves into a Digital Maintenance task – something you should keep up with as you get new information.

You have a week to get this task done before we move on to the next Organize Your Digital Self (OYDS) task.  New assignments post each Monday.

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