Often questioned but still used: the classic CV remains an unavoidable support during recruitment sessions, despite the development of methods to select candidates in a different way.
Critics of the curriculum vitae accuse it of being the source of discrimination against the candidate (on the basis of name, sex or place of residence), or of being able to bias the recruiters' point of view by mentioning certain backgrounds or interests.
It is to avoid these pitfalls that some companies have chosen to do without a CV. McDonald's and Ikea, for example, have made them optional.
The fast-food giant believes that "the CV doesn't tell us much about the candidate's know-how or interpersonal skills. Especially since, among the 500,000 applications received each year, "young people with little or no qualifications" represent the majority of the applications submitted, says Yannick Augrandenis, McDonald's communications advisor.
In place of a CV, these multinationals are focusing on the evaluation of"soft skills", i.e. the knowledge of how to behave in a company, by means of video games or role-playing.
Benoît Serre, vice-president of the National Association of Human Resources Directors (ANDRH), understands the interest of these multinationals in not relying entirely on the past experience of their candidates: "The interest in knowing the background of a candidate remains relative when the position requires, above all, soft skills.
But how can we explain the widespread use of the CV? "The CV does not allow us to judge personalities, but rather career paths," says Mr. Serre. Many candidates remain proud of their career path."
And according to Adrien Bignon, a recruitment consultant, this "professional business card" remains irreplaceable to highlight the diploma or professional experience.
"The resume still works very well when you're looking for a candidate with very specific experience or technical skills," Bignon says. This is less the case in companies like McDonald's, where new recruits are trained internally.
For the recruitment consultant, proclaiming the end of the curriculum vitae is more of a "marketing" argument to seduce candidates in sectors facing a shortage of manpower, rather than a desire to change the bias of recruitment.
"Between a company that recruits on CV and the one opposite that proposes to do without it, the choice is quickly made" for the candidate, he points out. This is particularly true in the case of McDonald's, which has chosen to stand out in the fast-food market by offering a questionnaire and video games based on cognitive sciences, instead of the classic duo of CV and cover letter.
But according to Mr. Bignon, for positions where the recruiter needs to know the candidate's background and skills, presenting an A4 format CV has the advantage of being less burdensome to prepare than its alternatives, such as video CVs or recruitment by simulation.
"The more demanding the recruiter is in his recruitment methods with the candidate, the more disappointed the candidate will be if he doesn't get the job, because he will have put more effort into it," points out Mr. Bignon.
Especially since alternative recruitment methods do not eliminate the risk of casting errors, notes Benoît Serre, also HR Director at L'Oréal. For him, the CV is not an obsolete tool, but it remains only one asset among others in the recruitment phase. In fact, "it only delays the moment when a manager meets a candidate".
"The CV is not meant to be the alpha and omega in recruitment, what counts above all is the interview and the human dimension" that emerges, he says.