Applicant tracking systems (also known as ATS) are used to screen out and organize job candidates for recruiters or hiring managers. ATS software solutions and executive recruiting software also serve as “resume keyword checkers”.
Learning how to communicate with ATS software solutions, and eventually, people are vital steps to making your resume stand out. As a job candidate, to think of an ATS software solution or executive recruiting software as a “resume keyword checker”, is not too far off from reality.
Find My Profession explains the proper way to get your resume past the resume keyword checker and in front of the eyes of the right recruiters and hiring managers.
Use the K.I.S.S. principle
Yes, when it comes to making the resume keyword checker happy, keep it simple and stupid (KISS). You may have the education and skills to make your resume shine like a Times Square billboard, but a resume keyword checker works better with simple resumes and simple formats. ATS software solutions and executive recruiting software prefer conformity and simplicity over creativity.
After you get the interview, you can explain your resume and strengths in greater detail. Until then, delete any form of creativity.
Dump the creative fonts, pictures, logos, or shadings. Try to avoid headings that you either decided to invent or thought would show your individuality.
Speak a language an ATS understands
All professions, people, ATS software solutions, and executive recruiting software have a common language. To make the resume keyword checker happy, fill out your resume with words that display your familiarity with a language. You have to use the right keywords to show you are a proper fit for a job.
Warning: Do not open a thesaurus and start copying and pasting familiar words you find on Google. Eventually, your resume will get in front of the eyes of a recruiter or hiring manager. This action may land you an interview, but the interview will end quickly when you reveal you knew “what to write”, but have no relevant experience.
Special tip: Never “keyword stuff” your resume. It makes your resume incomprehensible to the people who will eventually read it.
Use qualifications NOT objectives
The resume keyword checker, like most recruiters and hiring managers, knows this section has been quickly disappearing over the last few years. But it still shows up on resumes from time to time. Career objectives on a resume have lost importance.
Companies and people decided candidates who applied already showed their objectives, most importantly, the company’s objectives were more important in the hiring process.
With that understanding, the resume keyword checker happy adding a summary of your qualifications. Present your achievements and skills using proper keywords. Both the ATS and human reading your resume will appreciate it!
ATS software solutions demand proper spelling
It goes without saying that spelling mistakes are buzzkills for humans. The resume keyword checker is a much harsher critic! It will dump your resume, not because they think you can’t spell, but because it has no idea what you were trying to communicate.
One of the best apps for spellchecking is Grammar.ly, which you can use as a Google Chrome extension. It is also useful for checking grammar, if you need that, too.
Yes, the ATS can be a bit of mindless screening method, but if you pay attention to how it works you will get your resume in front of the hiring manager faster. And getting an interview is an important step to getting hired.
Would you like to see if your resume is up to snuff? Check out our resume services on Find My Profession.