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Standard resumés best: Study


Job seekers want their resumés to stand out from the flood of applications a prospective employer may get, but a new study has found being too creative can hurt a person’s chances.

Researchers at the BI Norwegian School of Management handed in three different resumés to a real job posting — one had a formal layout on white paper, one was on pastel-coloured paper and one was “creative” and designed to stand out. All three resumés had the same content.

The candidates were assessed by two committees — one consisting of 45 people with experience in recruitment from HR departments and recruitment companies, the other made up of 45 students with no professional experience in recruitment.

“All deviations from a formal format reduced the chances of an interview,” the researchers said in a release about the study, which will be published in the European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology.

The same candidate had almost twice the chances of being offered an interview with a formal resumé as with a “creative” one, the study showed.