Tuesday, March 24, 2009

CVs move into the digital age

Wordle: my cv wordleYesterday on my commute home I was listening to NPR's All Tech Considered. They were discussing how resumes and vitae have moved into the digital age. More and more companies are using not only websites meant for job postings, such as Monster.com, but also social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter to learn about their employees or potential hires. Already, academia is not far behind. There have been many conversations on campus and in the blogs and lists I follow about e-portfolios, both for students and faculty.

Making your CV available online can have many advantages. If you are currently seeking work, it allows potential employers (including headhunters) to search for you on the internet. Even if you are currently employed, having your CV online is a great way for students and collaborators to learn more about you. Indeed, many of us already have our own web pages (contact your department to find out how you can get your own).

But of course, there are also downfalls to being online. You may have read in the Chronicle of Higher Education about how a professor at Dartmouth put her foot in her mouth on Facebook (you can read the article here). Tech faux pas such as these are becoming known as "Cisco Fatties", after a woman "tweeted" herself out of a "fatty paycheck" at Cisco (read about it here). Apparently, students and employers can view not only the amazing, impressive items you post, but also the devastatingly stupid.

So a word to the wise - as you venture out into the world wide web, keep in mind that, for better or worse, you are being watched.

Did you know?

The graphic used in this post is an electronically created visual cloud of my own CV, created using wordle. Find out more about wordle, and make your own, at http://www.wordle.net/.

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