As the world of recruitment is ever changing, long standing practices are being swapped with new ways of hiring. For as long as we can remember the CV was the bedrock of job hunting but… is this changing?

According to most historians, the CV first came about way back in 1482 and since then the essence of them hasn’t changed all that much. For their entire existence they have served as an introduction to a person, their skills and experience, that recruiters can begin to select from.

Nowadays, they often reference all of a jobseekers achievements from Bachelor Degrees and hobbies to GCSEs and previous employment and applicants often take a great deal of time and care to ensure their CV stands out from the competition. This form of CV that we have come accustomed to started to form around the 1950s, when access to typewriters and printing began to be more readily available. Then in the noughties onwards platforms such as Linkedin allowed us to virtually upload our CVs to the internet and network globally to other professionals and companies. 

So, although mostly all industries have gone through immense changes since 1482 (or even the 1950s!)… how come CVs have remained relatively unchanged?

Well it’s pretty simple… They are still an overwhelmingly helpful first step in the recruitment process. Executive Grapevine conducted a survey of senior leaders, from CEO to HR, small business owners to HR academics and 85% find them a useful recruitment tool, mainly as a simple ‘holding place’ to sum up a candidates’ experience. 

However, this same research found that around 40% of respondents said that CVs don’t provide a strong representation of a candidate’s personality, an important factor to consider when adding to your team. Additionally, there is an argument that CVs can easily give way to unconscious bias because they only list facts and information about people and therefore, assumptions can easily be made especially surrounding things such as race and gender.

As we live in an age of skilled, educated people – competition is rife. We’ve all seen the Linkedin analytics… almost all job listings have at least 50 applicants, many 100+. And, if we think about this from a recruitment perspective that’s 100 CVs to delve into and sift through which is no mean feat. As candidates pour their efforts into trying to make their CVs stand out from the rest, when they are up against such high numbers, do they even stand a chance? 

To combat these issues, modern software can be used wisely by recruiters. AI offers the opportunity to judge talent purely on their skills and therefore eliminates the risks of unconscious bias helping give way to a diverse workforce that each bring a wonderful range of skills to an organisation. Recruitment CRM and Applicant Tracking Systems can also assist in handling candidates data. It can take those 100+ CVs and map out the key data and statistics so recruiters can easily view the talent pool, ensuring the best candidates are not lost… and refrain from being overwhelmed by the piles of paperwork and emails!

There are definitely many opportunities for jobseekers to find new opportunities and network with employers outside of the standard CV and cover letter first step in this day and age. Linkedin for example, not only allows candidates to directly communicate with business owners and recruiters, but also recruiters can do the reverse and directly message talent. We can all see each other’s career progression and skills set easily and therefore the need for a CV is somewhat eliminated. 

With that being said, the overwhelming majority of successful job applications started with a CV. Despite the advances in technology and the availability of easily accessible networking, the CV still stands strong as the foundation of recruitment. Business owners however, now have the opportunity to enhance their organisation and use fresh software such as ATS and recruitment CRM to ensure they find the best CVs, and people, out there. 

So, whilst you may love them, or hate them, a strong, well constructed, authentic and honest CV is still an extremely important factor of job hunting and there are few signs of this changing anytime soon.



A quick, responsive process is what you need to attract and engage the best talent.

At Rectec we help organisations to find the best Applicant Tracking System or best Recruitment CRM to suit your needs, accompanied by our unique complementary technology marketplace, to help you build the perfect recruitment tech stack for your business.