Are you not getting interviews? You probably think that you’re doing everything right. Great resume, check. Cover letter, check. Good Experience, check. But how come you can’t get your foot in the door?
There are robots, resume robots to be clear, manning the door. That’s right, they only let in the best resumes. Even though you thought your resume was good enough, you did not make it through the resume scanner. What happened
Companies don’t have time to sift through resumes, it’s way too time consuming. Instead, they have an ATS (Applicant Tracking System) to do the heavy lifting. Not to worry, let’s see how you we can enhance your resume so the robots are happy.
The resume scanner trap
With the job marketing becoming more and more competitive due to the lack of positions available, more and more recruiters are using application screening software (better known as a resume scanner) to screen resumes before they make it through to being seen by an HR person or the hiring manager. Up to 90% of the larger companies use some form of resume scanner. One of the main things you have to look at when compiling your resume, is getting past the resume robot.
Do you have a game plan?
% of resumes rejected in less than 11 seconds
How can you get more interviews?
You need to fundamentally change your application approach. Typically, you would see a great position and be motivated to send your resume with a customized cover letter. The problem is, your resume is your ticket in the door. The Resume Robots will scan your resume as if it’s a ticket. But what are the robots scanning? What are they looking for?
Resume Robots are essentially a computer program. They follow an algorithm, or a list of commands specified by the company you are applying to. The algorithms employed by the resume scanners have a simple goal in mind, and that is to find the best candidates for a specific position. Remember, if you have a great resume you will get an interview. To land the job though, you will have to pass the interview. So, the ATS (or resume robots), already knows what job you are applying for, and they basically ensure your resume meets the needs of the specific job. This is done through keyword matching or keyword scanning.
It’s essential to run your resume through a resume scanner before submitting your application. This will allow you to put your best foot forward and get past the resume scanner programs that might otherwise send your resume into cyberspace. Your resume should have specific keywords that are relevant to the position and to the company you are applying to. These keywords should be spaced throughout your resume and not just in your cover letter. Seeding your resume with the right keywords will help you get past the resume scanner programs and on to the next step.
Why am I not getting interviews for jobs I’m qualified for?
Don’t get complacent, and make sure you:
- Read through the job description for specific details and skills to add to your resume
- Update your Profile or Summary section to match the job description
- Get feedback from the company, as to why your resume was not chosen
Other issues with passing through resume scanner robots?
The ATS also has another important job, and that is to pick out important details from your resume. These include your address, education information, previous employers and skills.
Therefore, using pictures and fancy coloring in your resume can cause confusion and relegate you to the discard pile when trying to get past the resume scanners. Avoid using headers and footers as the constant repetition of the information in these areas can also cause your resume to get caught up in the system. Keep your font simple. Fonts such as Courier, Arial and Times New Roman are easy to read and simple for the resume scanners to scan through. Try and keep to a normal format and don’t add in extra titles and unnecessary information.
One of best ways to get past the resume scanners is to do a little research on the company you are looking to work for as well as read through the job posting well and ensure that you are using the keywords from the advert in your resume. When the advert calls for specific qualifications and skills, you need to ensure that you have them listed in your resume (provided you have the skills and qualifications needed). You can also read through the responsibilities of the job and pick out the keywords from that section of the advert and see if you have the skills to match the responsibilities required and that you have listed them in your resume.
Avoid common mistakes and adhere to the keyword requirements and you have a good chance of ensuring your resume gets past the resume scanners.