Throw Out Your Resume: Everything You’ve Been Taught at School About Applying for Jobs is Wrong

Toss your resume into the nearest recycling bin. Everything you’ve been taught at school about applying for jobs is wrong.

So says Shopify, an Ottawa-based ecommerce platform. The Canadian company, which is hiring like crazy, argues that the resume is as good as dead.

“Universities and colleges are 10 years behind the curve,” the company explains on a new minisite called Throw Out Your Resume, noting that they teach you “how to apply to large enterprise corporations with recruiting policies written in the 90s.”

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If you want to work for a startup, Shopify has some tips on how to apply for a job sans resume. Here are some of them in a nutshell:

1. Don’t apply to a hundred companies; instead create a list of companies that you actually find really interesting. Narrow down your interests, your goals and your skills.

2. Talk to people, network, reach out to old friends and family—not all job opportunities are posted online. Talk to people inside the company, find out everything you can about the job you want, what they’re looking for, what it’s like to work there.

3. Each company is different, and your applications should be too. Most applications companies receive are a resume with a cover letter attached, but there’s no rule saying yours has to. Surprise them by including a poster, a song you’ve written, a video, or something else made specifically for that company. Make yourself stand out.

4. Work on projects in your spare time. This shows enthusiasm as much as ability. Building a good portfolio takes a long time, but don’t worry. By creating a GitHub profile and adding even a single project you’ll already be ahead of the competition.

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Shopify also says that if you don’t land the job you wanted after following their tactics, don’t get down on yourself. “Taking the rejection is an important part of the process,” the company explains. “If you followed all the steps in this process then there is nothing you could have done differently or nothing you could have done better… you are just not a fit for the organization. Keep your chin up.”

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