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The pitfalls of using AI or a ‘resume factory’ to create your CV

Sitting down to update your CV can be a daunting task. Even worse is having to create a new one from scratch.

It can be very tempting to use AI or what I will call a “resume factory“.

But there are pitfalls to going down this route, and I will cover some of these in the next two sections.

Using AI

Using AI to create a CV can have its drawbacks, primarily stemming from the limitations of automated systems in capturing the nuances of individual experiences and personal qualities. While AI tools offer efficiency and speed, they may lack the human touch needed to convey the uniqueness of a candidate.

Firstly, AI-driven CV generators may struggle to interpret unconventional career paths, creative pursuits, or volunteer work that don't fit traditional templates. These platforms often prioritise keywords and standard formats, potentially overlooking valuable experiences that could set an applicant apart.

Furthermore, AI may inadvertently perpetuate biases present in its training data. If the underlying data reflects historical disparities, the AI-generated CVs might inadvertently favour certain demographics, leading to an unfair disadvantage for individuals from underrepresented groups.

Another concern is the potential oversimplification of achievements. AI systems might focus on quantifiable metrics, overlooking qualitative aspects that could be crucial in demonstrating soft skills, adaptability, or resilience—qualities that can significantly contribute to an individual's success in a role.

Particularly when applying for a more people-focused role. 

Moreover, AI-generated CVs might lack the ability to tailor content for specific job applications effectively. Tailoring a CV to highlight relevant skills and experiences for a particular position is a nuanced task that requires a deep understanding of both the job requirements and the individual's background, something AI may struggle to achieve convincingly.

There's also the risk of over-reliance on technology, leading to a diminished emphasis on human interaction during the recruitment process. Building a connection through a well-crafted CV is vital, and the personal touch that comes with a human-authored document can be more compelling than a machine-generated one.

Additionally, the dynamic nature of job markets requires constant adaptation. An AI system might not keep up with the latest industry trends, leading to outdated or irrelevant information on a CV. Human intuition and contextual awareness are crucial for ensuring that the document remains pertinent and appealing to current hiring practices.

While AI can streamline certain aspects of the job application process, its use in crafting CVs is not without its pitfalls. The inability to capture the richness of individual experiences, potential biases, oversimplification of achievements, and the risk of overlooking qualitative aspects are substantial concerns. Job seekers should approach AI-generated CVs with caution, recognizing the importance of infusing their personal touch and ensuring that the document effectively communicates their unique strengths and qualifications.

Using a ‘resume factory’

Opting for a resume factory to create your CV might seem convenient, but it often results in generic, cookie-cutter documents that fail to showcase your individuality. These services often rely on templates and standard phrases, leading to resumes that lack the personalised touch necessary to stand out in a competitive job market.

And many of them operate online from countries where English is not even their first language! Let alone understanding cultural differences. 

Resume factories prioritise quantity over quality, producing documents that might not align with your specific career goals or the nuances of the job you're applying for. Tailoring your CV to a particular role is crucial, and a generic approach can diminish your chances of making a meaningful impression on potential employers.

Moreover, resume factories may not adequately account for the uniqueness of your experiences, skills, and achievements. Human nuances, such as adaptability and interpersonal skills, can be overlooked in the quest for automated efficiency.

In essence, using a resume factory undermines the purpose of a CV, which is to represent you authentically. Crafting a compelling resume requires a thoughtful, individualized approach that reflects your unique qualifications and aspirations—something that a one-size-fits-all resume factory fails to deliver.

In conclusion

There is only one person that truly knows you!

AI will only provide an average of what it gleans from others. A resume factory will only provide a version of you based upon stock terms and phrases.

Neither of them know the real you!

But there is one really critical factor here. So, you decide to use one of these to create your CV. Then you submit this in your application. And then you are lucky enough to get an interview.

How are you going to present yourself as that created persona?

I somehow don’t think you are going to feel that comfortable, nor come across very natural, presenting yourself as the person in your CV that has been created by someone else, or by technology!

The choice is yours. But your future career is at stake. And…

There is only one person that truly knows you!

Author Bio | Keith Grinsted MBA FRSA

Born and bred in Essex (UK) and now living in Southend-on-Sea Keith has extensive experience across many sectors – private enterprise (startups, retail, and corporate), public sector (national and local govt), and third sector (Board Member and Trustee).

In the area of business turnarounds Keith has been referred to as a modern-day Sir John Harvey-Jones in the way he can look at a business and see opportunities the business owner has overlooked, or is simply unaware of

He is a freelance business writer having written eBooks under his own name for Business Expert Press in New York and a blog for Huffington Post UK, as well as ghost-writing for others.

For the past three years he has campaigned against loneliness and isolation through his Goodbye Lonely programme, having had a conversation on BBC TV with the late Captain Sir Tom Moore. He has been regularly interviewed on TV, Radio, and in national papers and magazines.

He is highlighting the wellbeing of remote / hybrid workers who are not being cared for by their employers to the level they require. He is a Mental health First Aider, a Wellbeing Champion, and has had suicide awareness training.

Through his life experiences Keith is passionate about the issues individuals face when they must start their careers over again and often, perhaps, reinvent who they are. Hence his award-winning LAUNCHPAD Programme helping those who are unemployed or facing redundancy get their career back on track.

  • Open University Business School Alumni Award for outstanding contribution to society
  • Investors in People Exceptional People Award for Community Engagement 

The single most important thing he works on is uncovering what it is they are passionate about. 

Keith believes that we are all capable of great things but we tend not to try new directions. Unless we release our emotions and uncover our passion, we will find setting a new course for the future very difficult. Keith strongly believes everyone should continue to learn and relate that learning to the work environment.

Keith is a great connector of people and has over 21,500 followers on LinkedIn and runs his Charity UK group with over 47,500 members. He is also Partnerships Director for Membership World.

February 2024

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