Humanity has evolved so far that the average human has to spend at least 12 years of life in a learning situation to cope with modern life. It is further recommended that to thrive in this modern world. One must spend further years in an institution of higher learning to achieve a higher degree. To get a well-paying job, people spend years studying in schools to keep good grades determined not by skills but the ability to retain knowledge and regurgitate it back.
These grades are calculated in Grade Point Averages (GPA) to determine class rank and achievement. It, therefore, parlays that it is an important piece of information about the student and is used to judge his abilities. After graduation and entering the labor market, many of these students are worried about whether they should include their GPA in their resumes.
While GPA is the be-all that will determine your worth in college, it does not necessarily mean that much to employers, so if you feel comfortable with your GPA being high enough, you can input it in your resume. However, if your GPA isn’t that high (below 3.5), it is best to leave it out but rather focus on skills and capabilities that you can bring to the employer. An employer is more concerned with what you can add to his organization and how you can make his organization better and more profitable.
The figure of a GPA tells him that you are a good student, but it in no way tells him that you are hardworking, reliable, or even punctual. It is also best to understand the purpose of the resume itself. If the resume is intended for a job in academia, then, of course, your GPA must be featured there, but jobs in the mainstream sector are a brutal world, and being book smart isn’t going to cut it. Hence recruiters are looking for innovative candidates and can think outside the box rather than conformists who wouldn’t add any value to their organization. Hence, I seriously believe that the inclusion of GPA in a resume should be avoided unless specifically asked for as it creates a few problems by its very presence. The inclusion of GPA in your resume could lead to the following problems.
Should I Include My GPA on my Resume?
- Snap Judgements
Recruiters often receive hundreds of applications for a few job openings. Sorting through them all can be a nightmare. Hence, the ATS (Automated Tracking System) development is a computer program used by recruiters to screen out unqualified resumes. This is crucial to understand that an employer may still have many applications that have made it through this process only to end up at his table.
He will look at the resume and judge the applicant based on the figure supplied for the GPA. This reduces the capabilities and skills of the applicant to just digits on a piece of paper. This also affects applicants with rather high GPAs as they are seen as book worms who wouldn’t thrive in a social environment. This is especially true if the organization is one of those that rely on their employee’s communication skills in rendering their services.
- Hindrance to Skill and Experience Visibility
Once a resume leads by highlighting the GPA, especially if it is high, the recruiter sees this as the candidate being boastful. This will negatively influence their choice towards hiring a said applicant. When applying for a position in any industry, it is essential to focus more on highlighting skills you already possess. This is because companies spend millions of dollars providing training workshops and seminars to their new hires and this money could be better spent in other parts of their organization.
It is more important to highlight your relevant experiences working in a similar field or position. This ensures that the recruiter won’t have teething problems related to adjustment with new hires as they get acclimated to the work environment. They care less about GPA but more about your capabilities and contributions to their organization.
- Woke Culture
With the woke culture permeating every industry on earth, even elite industries such as technological and mining companies are currently joining the trend of not emphasizing college degrees during recruitment. Leasing companies like apple and google no longer ask for degree certificates but rather focus on the skills and experience of each applicant as they believe it is a better judge of how valuable such a person will be to their organization. This makes it unwise when applying to such woke industries to include GPA in the resume.
They will feel like the applicant has nothing to offer aside from their academic qualification. It is rather best to focus on what value you can add to their organization through your innovation and skills, not your ability to answer questions that the answers provided to you in school. Recruiters want problem solvers, not memorizers. They want people that will challenge the norm and invent new and better ways of doing things, not those that excel in an already set parameter.
- Deprecating Value
Including GPA in a resume even if the applicant is confident that the resume is high is risky. How certain are you that your GPA will be the highest among all the applicants that will apply for the position? As one can never be sure of such answers, it is best to leave it off as it will reflect badly on the applicant if other applicants have a higher GPA than them. This makes them look like they are less capable than the other applicants.
This will invariably lead the recruiters to plump for candidates with higher GPAs without considering their actual abilities in the real world. This will have a depreciating effect on the hiring process as candidates who will be better suited for the roles are left out because they have a lesser GPA.
Remember that you cannot control various variables like what mood the recruiter will be in or what exactly they are looking for when applying for a vacancy. Hence, the last thing you want to do is provide them with ammunition to shoot you down. It is more important to highlight what you bring to the table and what you propose to do for their organization, and what value you intend to add to them than to highlight your ability to listen to your tutors in college by providing them with a GPA. Don’t let arbitrary figures define you, but rather what you have inside you should speak for you.