How ROI can make your CV stand out

Here’s some great advice I found from Lazlo Bock, a Google HR guy, on why showing the ROI of your efforts on your CV really helps it stand out from the other candidates:

How do you make your accomplishments stand out? There’s a simple formula. Every one of your accomplishments should be presented as:

Accomplished [X] as measured by [Y] by doing [Z]

In other words, start with an active verb, numerically measure what you accomplished, provide a baseline for comparison, and detail what you did to achieve your goal. Consider the following two descriptions of the same work, and ask yourself which would look better on a resume:

  1. Studied financial performance of companies and made investment recommendations
  2. Improved portfolio performance by 12% ($1.2M) over one year by refining cost of capital calculations for information-poor markets and re-weighting portfolio based on resulting valuations

The addition of the “12% improvement” makes the statement more powerful. Adding “($1.2M)” anticipates the reviewer’s question about whether 12% is a big deal or not. If you improved investment results by 12%, but that meant going from $100 to $112, that’s not too impressive. But adding $1.2M to the starting portfolio value of $10 million is huge. Explaining how you did it adds credibility and gives insight into your strengths.

CBA vs ROI (cost benefit analysis vs return on investment)

 

** Updated to include a new comparison example between CBA and ROI in the second table below **

A great table and explanation of the difference uses and value of the two forms of measurement for social marketeers, from Angie Schottmuller in Search Engine Watch:

Cost-Based Analysis (CBA) Return on Investment (ROI)
Formula Benefits – Costs ( Benefits – Costs ) / Costs
Example $12,000 B – $1,000 C
= $11,000 CBA
($12,000 B – $1,000 C) / $1,000 C
= 11 or 1100% ROI
Format Dollar Value Percentage or Ratio
Purpose Analyze estimated cost impact. e.g. make a profit, break-even, take a loss. Analyze investment effectiveness for generating a profit.
Focus Profit Investment Return
Common Use Compare options using a common currency and justify bottom-line feasibility of spending. Assess profitability as a basis for continuing and prioritizing future investments.
Answers… Will we come out ahead? How effective were we at coming out ahead? What kind of payback did we get for the investment?

Note: An ROI of 1 or 100% implies you’d get back what you put into it, while CBA, also sometimes known as Cost-Benefit Analysis, has a $0 “break even” point.

Notice how in the examples above, the CBA for two different tactics with very different costs could be the same, while respective ROI sheds further light on the investment effectiveness.

I have added comparison below, to better illustrate how the same CBA for two different sets of figures, but which delivers a different ROI figure, all the better to help guide investment:

COST-BASED ANALYSIS (CBA) RETURN ON INVESTMENT (ROI)
Formula Benefits – Costs ( Benefits – Costs ) / Costs
Example 1  $55,000 B – $44,000 C
= $11,000 CBA
($55,000 B – $44,000 C) / $11,000 C
= 0.25 or 25% ROI
Example 2  $155,000 B – $144,000 C
= $11,000 CBA
($155,000 B – $144,000 C) / $144,000 C
= 0.076 or 7.6% ROI

Anyhow that’s not all from Angie (and me with example #2), in the post there’s also a very helpful section on different calculation formulas which comes with the following presentation including said formulas for social SEO among others:


Finally, KPIs?
And if you found that useful, but for some reason thought, “yes but how does that relate to KPIs?” then I have a one slide example of how to create a KPI (which is pretty popular on Slideshare with 150+ downloads to date)

The Process Of How KPIs Work from Stuart G Hall (stuartgh)

 


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