Getting a Job in the Recession #2: The Virtual CV

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visualcv2The second article in my series, Getting a Job in the Recession, is a review of VisualCV. Last week, I looked at how to put together a regular CV. So, what makes a virtual CVdifferent?

What makes VisualCV different?

You can use VisualCV to produce a fairly standard online resume (that can be saved, printed or emailed), including the option to save it as a PDF file. There is the facility to add qualifications and career developments, as in a regular CV.

However, there is much more scope than that. My analysis is that VisualCV has enough additional options to provide consultants and freelancers or those who have lots of experience, with a comprehensive and professional online portfolio.

The first section of the profile includes a default section for your name and contact details. It supplies the facility to add three links, including an RSS feed option.

Add Multimedia Elements to ‘The Main Column’

VisualCV employs a very straightforward layout: a Main Column and a Sidebar. In the Main Column, you can add the following elements (or not). The beauty is that your VisualCV may look entirely different from mine. I may add an Objective and some Skills, whereas you may prefer to add online video to the Portfolio section together with some Work History.

Portfolio

You can add an image, document, video/audio clips; Yahoo or YouTube videos or a SlideShare presentation to the main column. This makes for infinitely customised possibilities.

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Objective

This is where you choose to express the purpose of this particular online profile.

Work History

This section displays each stage of your career development.

Education

This section displays each stage of your educational achievements, with date, title and location details.

Summary

This section is a free-text box, where you can add a summary of your career, education or whatever you wish!

Skills

This section is a free-text box, where you can highlight pertinent points from your education and career.

Interests

This section is a free-text box, where you can list your interests.

Certifications

Anything additional to your Education can be listed here.

Clearances

If you possess any clearances, to certain levels, they can be listed here.

Custom

This section is a free-text box, where you can add anything you like. Like any of the other section headings, double-clicking on the heading will allow for editing.

Add References and Testimonials to ‘The Sidebar’

The Sidebar can house items from the Portfolio, References and Custom items. Portfolio and Custom are identical to that explained above.

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References

This is where you can add references and testimonials from previous employers or clients. It includes an option to add contact details, relationship and description.

Look and Feel

Individual elements allow basic text formatting. In addition, there are two options:

  • a Swap Columns option, which moves the sidebar from left to right
  • a list of Styles – nine patterned background choices

Share Your Profile with Employers and Others

There are three menus at the top of the screen, which supply the following tools:

You

  • From here, you can view your public profile and who has viewed it. If the viewer was a VisualCV user, you can click through to their profile. Otherwise, it’s listed as a Public View. In addition to individuals, recruitment agencies and employers also use VisualCV to find potential employees.
  • You can also see who has ‘shared’ their profile with you, and view their profile, if they have made it public.

Share

  • Send by email – using your LinkedIn contacts or other address book
  • Social Networks – Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn
  • Promote Yourself – button code is supplied
  • Create a Document – create a PDF from your VisualCV

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Get Hired

  • Jobs, Direct Employers, Recruiters currently caters for USA users only
  • Marketplace provides links to addition VisualCV services, such as Resume Writing, Certified VisualCV Creation and Videography and Photography. Read this to see how you can get listed, to become a supplier of some of these services.
  • Career Interests takes you to a checkbox listing of professions and target industries. Select the appropriate ones, to help potential employers to find you on VisualCV.

Tip for Freelancers and Those Who Employ Them

Depending on the position, it’s sometimes appropriate to divert potentially new clients to your multi-media VisualCV, rather than sending a standard CV created in Microsoft Word. Or, you can use it to supplement the information your traditional CV supplies.

If you use contractors or other freelancers to help you make up a team for a project, it might be an idea to ask each of them to set up a profile here, where you specify the sections they need to fill in. Clients on larger projects often want to the see the qualifications and experience level of each of the people working on the project, before final arrangements are made. This will help create a consistent look to the personnel you have on hand to deal with your projects.

Get onto VisualCV today and set up a profile. The QuickStart Tour might be a good place to begin. If you need any help, get in touch!

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