|Times-Mirror Interview with Don Garrett of Resume Not Required: Sticking out - Avoiding the resume pile in a job search|
by Matt Vecchio, Loudoun Times-Mirror, August 31, 2011
Resume after resume, rejection after rejection - job hunting can take its toll. Frustration and self doubt sets in, making the process increasingly arduous as time goes on and bills and debt pile up. At least two companies are trying to provide a light at the end of that tunnel.
“Job hunting is the most painful, depressing thing,” Don Garrett, founder of Vienna-based Resume Not Required, said. “People would often rather be miserable at their job every day than go through the process of looking for another one.”
Anthony Cornecelli, co-founder of Vi Productions, agrees.
“There’s two classes of people right now that are making it difficult,” Cornecelli said. “Older people with years of experience who are willing to take a pay cut, and younger, just-out-of-college types who will accept longer hours with less pay. That’s what makes the process so frustrating.”
In Virginia, the unemployment rate as of June 2011 stood at 6.3 percent, well under the 9.3 percent national average. But Northern Virginia, a hotbed for government and various industry jobs, projects much lower unemployment numbers. Loudoun County reported a 4.4 percent rate, Fairfax County reported 4.5 percent and Arlington stood at a state-low 3.9 percent as of June.
But these numbers don’t tell the whole story.
“About half of people hate their jobs,” Garrett said. “Bad jobs, or good jobs, make us different people at home. Good days at work make us great husbands, good golf buddies, that mood carries into our life. Bad days, well…”
With a tumultuous job market and faltering economy, some risk-takers are now starting to ditch the standard paper resume approach ― pick a lucky one out of these other several hundred in front of you ― to make themselves appeal more, or set them apart, to employers.
Cornecelli knew he was onto something when he was just getting out of college.
“I remember going to a job fair and thinking, ‘what If I had a CD with my interview on it that I could just hand out’,” Cornecelli said. “The technology wasn’t there yet at the time.”
After Cornecelli spent some time on the hamster wheel at various jobs, he decided to team up with Brandon Frye earlier this year, and the duo launched Vi Productions - a company built around offering the customer a powerful video supplement to couple with their resumes.
The company asks customers to provide a copy of their resume in advance, then Cornecelli breaks it down and identifies highlight areas. He then formulates an array of interview questions based on the customer’s qualifications, certifications and awards.
Once customers are ushered in, they are given an on-camera interview, which they can eventually take and couple with a resume or cover letter while applying for jobs. Additionally, the customer’s VI, which stands for video interview, is placed in a database that, when launched on Nov. 1, will be accessible by companies and headhunters looking to hire.
“I would say that this is innovation, but I think we’re just keeping up with the status quo at this point,” Cornecelli said. “That said, I think in 20 years if you don’t have a VI, you won’t even be considered for a job.”
A video done by Vi Productions will run for approximately $400, including entry into the database.
“You could be sitting on the beach and be getting called for interviews, because of the database,” Frye, the vice president and director of marketing, said.
For more information, visit their website at viproductionsnow.com.
While a resume supplement is a good tool for the arsenal, Garrett is focused on eliminating the current hiring model altogether.
“My mission in life is to change the way job-hiring works,” Garrett, who founded Resume Not Required seven years ago, said. “In reality, there is no such thing as a good resume. When you send your resume out, you’re giving reasons to convince companies not to hire you.
“Too many jobs, too few jobs, not enough experience, too much experience, not enough education, too much education ― you can see where I’m going here.”
Garrett is dumbfounded that people can send out 100 resumes and, on average, not hear back from 98 of those companies.
“What else in your life would you do over and over when you know you have a 98 percent failure rate?” Garrett said.
This, in part, is the reason Garrett launched Resume Not Required, which acts as an agent, listening to the customer and finding what he or she wants to do - and going for it. If successful, a percentage of the client’s starting salary goes to Resume Not Required.
Because of the carousel that is the current job market, with the balance of power tipping towards the employers, Garrett believes people will grasp at straws if it means a steady paycheck.
“When we get a job, any job, we celebrate like we hit the lottery, when really, just about everyone has a job,” Garrett said. “Because of how difficult that process is, we’ll take a job that’s not even really what we want to do.”
And Garrett acknowledges that the pendulum also swings both ways.
“Look, as a business owner, I understand how much of an absolute pain it is to write a paycheck to someone who doesn’t want to be there,” Garrett said. “But so many companies think something is better than nothing. The reason companies fail is because they can’t find the right people.”
Garrett believes that happy, productive employees make productive companies. With that thought process, people landing in the jobs they want to do can improve the economy as a whole.
Garrett thinks networking, one of the best ways to secure employment, is also to blame for many people settling for sub-par or unwanted positions.
“I can’t deny that networking leads to jobs because it does,” Garrett said. “But the problem is, we reach out to these people that are close with us, and they are quick to give advice. Keep in mind, half of them are complaining about their own jobs.
“Why consider maybe 100 jobs that are available by networking when there are 20 million companies in the United States and 120-130 million jobs to choose from?”
Garrett thinks needing to know someone to get a job doesn’t make sense - equating it to not knowing your grocer, or your car salesman but still buying items from them.
The huge resume bog is really a product of the Internet, with websites such as careerbuilder.com and monster.com creating a virtual breeding ground for resumes - often outdated. But there is a benefit.
“The one thing the Internet does do is it allows you to find a job anywhere,” Garrett said. “What’s the worst that can happen, somebody says ‘no.’”
For Garrett, passion, ingenuity and ideas outweigh experience any day of the week.
“If experience mattered in this town, Sonny Jurgensen would still be [the Redskins] quarterback.”
The original article can be found at Loudoun Times-Mirror.