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Expert: Take no more than 15 seconds on a resumé

Posted on August 17th, 2011 Read time: 1 minutes

While the job market may currently favor employers, that doesn't mean finding the right permanent or contract worker for a position is an easy one.

When looking to hire new employees, companies can make a number of mistakes, such as judging a book by its cover – or resume. According to EBN Online contributor Carla Mahrt, a human resources administration shouldn't be too quick to determine whether a candidate receives an interview solely on the basis of his or her resumé.

In fact, Mahrt writes that research from experts estimated that 40 percent of the decision to hire a candidate is dependent upon "personal chemistry," which has nothing to do with a resumé's layout, font type, flow or numerous other factors.

Instead, she asserts that resumés should be used as a screening device. "I look at a resumé for approximately 15 seconds – checking educational background, prior work experience and any job-hopping history," Mahrt explains. "If the applicant passes this 15-second test, I set up a phone interview, where the real scrutiny begins."

Businesses should have no trouble attracting a healthy pool of applicants for any position, as the national unemployment is currently 9.1 percent, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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