Not many job seekers know that 72 per cent of resumes are never seen by human eyes. A myriad of employers are now using a recent technology called applicant tracking system (ATS).
To get your resume to the next round, you need to win over this system, which has its own complex rules.
ATS will assign the job seeker a score based on how well he matches the job that the employer is trying to fill. Then the sophisticated machine will rank and sort all the candidates.
Only the applicants with the highest scores are reviewed by a human.
This is why it is important to format your resume to be more data-extraction friendly.
The program can analyse a document and extract elements of what the writer means to say.
A curriculum vitae's elements usually consists of basic information - the applicant's skills, experience and education.
Unfortunately, the way job seekers write their resume is infinitely varied, and that will confuse the system.
ATS has to capture all these different ways of writing through complex rules and statistical algorithms.
Do you want your abilities to be recognised by the system?
It is vital for you to consider your long-term future while pursuing your career
Here are several tricks on how to format a data extraction- friendly resume:
GET RID OF IMAGES AND GRAPHICS
As much as you want your resume to be of eye-candy quality, the ATS will not be able to read or understand an image.
So forget the images and graphics. Be wordy instead.
AVOID UNFAMILIAR FONTS AND SPECIAL CHARACTERS
Use only standard fonts, such as arial, tahoma and trebuchet.
Also, use standard characters such as bullets. Other characters, such as arrows, can cause problems for the ATS.
And avoid fancy borders and shading. Make sure your resume is easy to read.
USE LANGUAGE FROM THE JOB DESCRIPTION
Read the job description carefully to determine the skills required by the employer.
Then, put the buzzwords the employer is using into your resume.
Spell out your skills and include industry-specific abbreviations or acronyms that the employer may also search for when finding candidates with the right experience.
The ATS will be looking for these keywords. A resume that is filled with the keywords will obviously get a better score.
If you have other skills or irrelevant information that aren't required, consider leaving them out. Only mention the past positions and skills that are relevant.
Any misspelt words will be ignored by the ATS. It is important to re-read your resume and spell check.
Even better, ask for help from a friend to run through your resume.
PUT BASIC INFORMATION AT THE TOP
Don't forget to include your basic information at the top of your resume. The phone number and e-mail address are significant for further communications. The ATS is able to send you an e-mail with additional instructions after you've applied for the position.
TAILOR YOUR RESUME
You will read different job descriptions from different companies. It means their ATS has different keywords and phrases
Be thoughtful for each resume. You must tailor your skills and experience according to the employer's requirements.
Article contributed by TBC HR Consulting (www.tbchr.com)
10 Resume Strategies That Will Get You Hired: Tips for Senior-Level Jobs
Your resume is the first thing that a potential employer will see, so you need to make sure that it's telling them that they need to hire you. This is especially important if you want roles in communication and marketing. They're roles that are in demand, so you need to show that you're the best. Here's ten rules that will make sure that secure that all important interview.
1. Focus on career events
The longer you've been working, the more experience you have to draw from. What have been the most important events in your career so far? Which ones have been leading you up to applying for this job? Make sure you include them in your resume, and show just how you got the experience needed to make you the right person for the role.
2. Show in depth accomplishments and why they mattered
So you managed to launch a social media campaign in your old job? A lot of people can do that. What you need to do is show your potential future employer why it mattered. Give them the numbers. Show them how it affected the company. If they can see what an impact you can have, they'll be much more inclined to interview you.
3. Pay attention to your contact information
When you include your contact details, be mindful of what you're including. You may think you're up to date with an email address, but using an AOL address rather than a Gmail one can show you're out of touch. Vet your contact details, and see where you need to make changes before you send that resume out.
4. Use tools and services for that extra polish
No one is a success all on their own, and that means you'll want help with your resume. There's plenty of tools online that you'll want to press into service to make your resume that extra bit special. If you want to enlist specialist writers, try BoomEssays, Resumention, UKWritings, or Assignment Writing. To check your grammar, spelling and length, try Australian Help or Easy Word Count. If you want to use templates to help create your resume, try Live Career.
5. Showcase yourself in 10 seconds
Most people applying for jobs now know about the '10 second rule'. Potential employers will scan your resume and within 10 seconds, they can decide whether they want to interview you or not. If you want them to see you favourably, you need to make sure your main points are bold and easy to read. Make sure they see what's so great about you before they stop reading.
6. Use keywords
Think keywords are what you'll have to worry about when you land the job? You'll actually have to keep them in mind long before that. Potential employers will scan your resume for keywords, so keep your job ad in mind when you're writing. Use the right words and they're much more likely to pay attention.
7. Tell a story rather than listing your jobs
Listing your jobs is dull, and doesn't really tell the reader about your relevant experience. Instead, try creating a story with your past roles. Show them why you took each role on, and what you got from the experience. They want to see why your experiences have brought you to applying for their role.
8. Use highlights that align with your target role
Every resume should have a 'highlights' section, that outlines the absolute highlights of your career. The reader doesn't want to know exactly what you did every day, they want to know how your actions benefited the company you worked for. Keep this in the top third of your resume, to draw the reader in before they carry on and find out more about you.
9. Proofread, proofread, proofread
Poor grammar can give a bad impression of you no matter how good your experience is, so keep it out of your resume. Proofread your finished piece and make sure that nothing has slipped past you. This is where the tools mentioned above can come in very useful. Even better, ask someone else to go over it and weed out any mistakes that you have missed. You'd be amazed at what can get past your critical eye.
10. Be yourself
This tip sounds rather trite, but it's actually vital. Write your resume with the job in mind, but don't make yourself out to be something you're not. Potential employers are looking for your experience, and it won't help if you're saying things you think they want to hear. Just be yourself, and you may be surprised at how far you get.
Give these tips a try the next time you're writing a resume. You'll be surprised at just how much better it can make it look.