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I have applied for few jobs using StackOverflow Jobs page and it asks me to optionally upload a resume, otherwise they'll add an autogenerated resume.

If you don't upload a resume, we'll attach a PDF version of your CV for you.

Since I have recently got back into this job game and haven't created an actual resume in years, I normally choose the Autogenerated option. So my question is, is it a good practice or does it look like the candidate was lazy to create their own resume?

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    Hey @JoeStrazzere, could you deliberate a bit more? When you took a peek at candidates LinkedIn profile and CV, if they are identical - do you frame it as lazy approach or would you still get candidate in for an interview and ask for reasoning about such decision to use auto generated CV facility? – Cthulhubutt Oct 10 '16 at 11:45
  • @WorkerDrone care to elaborate more as to why exactly it is lazy? – Cthulhubutt Oct 10 '16 at 12:03
  • It might be that this is opinion based question, also depending on what industry we are talking about. – Cthulhubutt Oct 10 '16 at 12:38
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    @WorkerDrone That's a statement of factm, not the smoking gun and evidence of being lazy. What if you work for 15 years for someone, do you keep re-writing your CV or do you just add relevant experience and skills gained since you last updated it and new work experience at current role? I could take a look at it from the point of view of person who's busy as hell, why would I not automate the process if the end result looks exactly the same like the CV I've updated continuously up to certain point 2 years ago. It seems this is discussion of form over function and personal opinions. – Cthulhubutt Oct 10 '16 at 16:04
  • @WorkerDrone I currently have a startup. We're shutting it down. So, I didn't actually plan for having a CV ever. #NotLazy – noob Oct 10 '16 at 16:07
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It would be a bad idea not to make your own resume.

I guess you have to show more than your work experience on a resume. The font and the layout you are using, the experience that you are willing to display say a lot about your personality. When a recruiter looks at your resume, he can tell if you are conscientious, friendly, extrovert, etc... With an automated resume you will just show you are lazy.

Besides, when applying for a job you want to show interest. If you don't then the employer will think that you are not fit to put enough efforts for the job. By not taking the time to make your own resume, you are just showing you are lazy and not motivated enough.

I would recommend that you take some time and create a personalized resume before applying to any job.

  • A while back I got tempted to use some LinkedIn CV generation tool, after painstakingly getting my usual, "hand-crafted" CV up to date. After running that through, I got almost exactly the same result, even better that I expected. I did up vote your answer as I think that at the beginning of the career writing up documents from ground up helps you improve your writing skills. After a while when you know what to write and how to put everything logically in CV, you'll appreciate the convenience of autogen of CV. I have never had any prospective employer complain about that. – Cthulhubutt Oct 10 '16 at 11:32
  • I guess it is different depending on which field you are applying at. But at least in europe, a lot of young graduates have the same profiles and making your own resume says a lot about your personality and helps differenciate it. But I also think that if you have anough experience you should still be able to make your own, because it shows that you spent time on it and have interest in the application you have submitted. It is the same for cover letters, the ones that are personnalized work better than the ones that are not. – MopMop Oct 10 '16 at 12:25
  • I treat cover letter separately, which is tailored to the company/opportunity. That will show or not, whether someone bothered to write it or just use template online. What can show the attitude is interview, right after after decision about relevance of skill set and experience is done. I can't judge someone's aptitude much from formal writing and that is something that can be mastered, without necessarily reflecting reality about candidate. If course there are people who are not good fits that can go through interview process but that's a discussion for different Workplace question :) – Cthulhubutt Oct 10 '16 at 12:34
  • Just one more comment - you can still format the CV to your hearts content if it's auto generated, it's the content that matters here, not presentation. Nothing stops you from taking that info and putting it into your super-spiffy, dapper template that shows your style. – Cthulhubutt Oct 10 '16 at 12:55
  • Other than the use of something like comic sans screaming that the applicant is in no way qualified for any position involving user experience I'm not seeing any message that could be sent by font choice. – Dan Neely Oct 10 '16 at 22:50
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About 6-8 months ago, I was looking for new a new job. Every application I used was either through Stack Overflow Careers (with my CV from there), via LinkedIn with my profile, or with a PDF export from Stack Overflow Careers. I regularly received phone screens, turned those into face-to-face interviews, and ended up with multiple offers. The job offer I accepted was using a PDF export from Stack Overflow Careers, and the next best position I was considering was also the same PDF export.

I no longer maintain a resume or CV in Word or text format. Instead, I keep Stack Overflow Careers and LinkedIn up-to-date (I usually review it every few months or if there's a significant event at work). When I need to apply, I generate a PDF if I cannot use one of these profiles. If something needs to be text, I can copy/paste into a text file from one of these sources. If you aren't applying with your SO Careers or LinkedIn profile directly, I'd recommend exporting to a PDF and customizing what sections appear - for example, I remove the "Personal Statement" from a PDF export of my SO Careers profile. Then, you can write a personalized cover letter for each position, export that as a PDF, and attach both.

It's hard to update resumes. If an employer thinks that it's lazy to take advantage of tools to build your CV as a profile and build an online presence, I'm not sure that is the kind of attitude of a company or hiring manager that I want to work for.

  • As with comment for the answer above, from my experience it's like with everything - automation of tasks works if they are tedious and you know well how they work. If you put rubbish in your CV, no amount of hand-pampering or auto generation will help you. Initially, it's good to write up whatever you want to convey on paper, after a while, you know what to say, how to say it and you update one place instead of 5. – Cthulhubutt Oct 10 '16 at 11:35
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    Well, no one can say no to a candidate with 58K SO reputation, whether the CV is autogenerated or not ;-) – noob Oct 10 '16 at 12:07
  • @noob Does the SO-generated CV contain info about that as well? That's interesting :). – Cthulhubutt Oct 10 '16 at 12:11
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    @noob It's not on the PDF, though. The PDF export only contains my city/state, email, job history (position, company, technology tags, description), education history, and certifications. Everything else is only available if you go to the SO Careers page, which isn't linked to on the PDF export. – Thomas Owens Oct 10 '16 at 12:44
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    @Cthulhubutt SO lets you pick. You can include one link to a website in the header, so the person may have put the link to their SO profile. – Thomas Owens Oct 10 '16 at 13:46
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Answer from Thomas resonated with me the best, being in IT I don't like unnecessary faff and looking at CVs (and been doing quite a bit of that recently myself). tl;dr

If you've looking at CV and go "that's just lazy, automated BS!", there's a chance you might be doing it wrong. Information matters, whether it was generated from LinkedIn or from your head, does not matter much.

====> Original post

I will have to disagree with the idea of auto generated CV (from services such as SO and LinkedIn. It would also depend on what kind of industry/area of expertise or interest the CV is intended to, even though I will be going on a bit of a limb here and think about only one situation when I wouldn't be surprised if look of the CV would matter. Art related? Even then, that should not matter even one bit.

If you are looking at CV itself - not the actual information it contains, you are missing the point. You could also be making a big mistake. I would struggle to look at that kind of CV and go "perfect fit! Picture - check, custom magical graphical noise, personalized. That's what I need! Not a scrum master who can do their job but someone who takes sweet time to pimp-their-CV.

There's also a bit of bias on my side. I work in IT, if there is a task that takes up more time that it should and is repetitive, I will try to reduce complexity and automate it.

  • I better get used to down votes. Explanation is obviously optional if the reason isn't obvious. Quite like manners are :) – Cthulhubutt Oct 10 '16 at 16:30

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