Tag Archives: online job applications

Beating The Applicant Tracking System – Your Formatting Is Crucial


Last week I shared tips on using the proper keywords on your resume to get through the Applicant Tracking System. Today, I will discuss proper resume formatting, to avoid the dreaded “Resume Black Hole”!

Applicant Tracking Systems are actually very simple systems. They read the information on your resume as data, categorize it and use it to populate the hiring company’s candidate database. It then rates how qualified each candidate is by matching their resume with the keywords from the job posting. Equally as important as keywords is the formatting you use for your resume. If your formatting is not compatible with the Applicant Tracking System, it literally cannot read the information on your resume!

You can be the most qualified person for the job, but if the automated recruiting software cannot read your resume, your resume is not flagged for review. No human being will ever read it. And if the hiring manager never sees your resume, you would lose out on the opportunity.

Here are some specifics on ATS-friendly formatting.   Continue reading

Beating the Applicant Tracking System: Identifying the Keywords to Include on Your Resume

woman smashing computer By now, you probably know that most employers use Applicant Tracking Systems to weed through the onslaught of incoming resumes, and use keyword matching to identify the most qualified candidates. I am frequently asked by jobseekers how to identify the keywords to include in their resume.

It is not some deep, dark secret. It is actually quite easy to figure out which keywords to include on your resume. For starters, carefully review the job posting. If it is a well-written job posting, you should be able to easily identify the keywords. They are the specific experience, skills and education required of the ideal candidate. Highlight all these keywords and work them into your resume in context. Continue reading