In today's competitive job market, even the most finely honed of resumes can wind up in the recycle bin. To better the odds of landing an interview (and a job!) some workers have turned to a more inventive way to get the attention of hiring managers: the presume.
The presume, pronounced just like résumé, is essentially a visual introduction, produced using slide-show software that features the applicant's voice, describing personal and work history along with a cogent pitch that highlights why the candidate should be hired.
Hanna Phan recently used a presume to apply for a job with SlideRocket, a San Francisco-based maker of presentation software, similar to Microsoft's PowerPoint.
Having been laid off in 2008 from her position as an IT engineer, Phan was keen on finding not just a new job -- but the right job.
With that in mind, Phan, 32, started to examine what it was she wanted to do and began targeting companies that had those kinds of jobs. That led her to SlideRocket, which recently was looking for a product manager.
Phan tells AOL Jobs that the idea for her presume began with "something that didn't work" -- her resume. "And when something doesn't work, over and over again," she says, "you decide you have to change up your game plan."
Phan produced her presume using SlideRocket's software and then sent the presentation via Twitter to company CEO Chuck Dietrich.
Dietrich received Phan's presume just as he was boarding a plane for New York, he tells AOL Jobs. Upon viewing it, Dietrich was so impressed with the presentation, "If I had time to call Hanna before I took off I would have," he says. "But I called her right when I landed."
Phan's presentation and the method by which she reached out to Dietrich "was indicative of a successful entrepreneur," Dietrich says.
In today's economy, he says, employers are increasingly looking for employees who think and act like entrepreneurs, by finding ways to get things done more efficiently.
Still, Phan says that putting together her presentation took a lot of soul-searching and risk-taking.
It took about two weeks to hone the concept and write several different scripts, says Phan, who was hired as a product manager at SlideRocket in early September.
"But it all came down to one week of just pouring my guts out, and putting myself out there," she says.
Phan's approach at identifying one company and going after it with her heart and soul, served her well, Dietrich says.
For anyone looking for work, focus is key, he says. "Spending more time on getting the job you want will probably serve you better than the [scattershot approach] that a lot of job applicants take."
Along with the presume, SlideRocket offers these five unique ways that can help job seekers stand out from the crowd.