As an out-of-town job seeker based in Chicago, Stephanie Florence knew in 2011 that in order to land a job in New York City — nearly 900 miles away — her resume would have to go the extra mile, too.
“My competition would be able to interview on lunch breaks,” says the Midtown resident, now 28 and a public relations account executive at Edelman Public Relations. “Since I couldn’t, I decided to figure out a way to stand out.”
So Florence included a QR code at the top of her resume, leading to a microsite where she had created a video explaining why, exactly, she wanted to work in the p.r. industry — and sent it to every professional contact she had made during her years networking in Chicago. After fielding interview offers, Florence flew out to New York for a packed few days of interviews and, upon her return to Chicago, sent each hiring manager another video: a personalized YouTube thank-you note reiterating why she wanted to work at their firm.
The extra effort may have taken hours longer than sending out the same black-and-white bullet-pointed resume to potential contacts, but it worked — and Florence isn’t the only job-seeker whose creativity paid off in the form of a job offer. Over the past few years, thousands of other New Yorkers have found that an out-of-the-box resume has landed them in the office of their choice.
“In the past decade, there’s been a major shift, both in terms of the talent pool and what hiring managers are looking for,” says Dana Leavy-Detrick, founder of Brooklyn Resume Studio, a resume writing and career consulting agency. “What’s shifted is a huge surge of entrepreneurship, as well as new marketable skills, such as expertise in social media and digital marketing. Together, these have changed both how job seekers market themselves and what companies are seeking when they try to attract and retain talent.”