Automated tracking systems can reject your resume before it even reaches a real person

Organisations and recruitment agencies are becoming more reliant on technology, with many opting to use an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) to automate the recruitment process and get the best employee for their needs. According to a <a href="">recent article in PC World</a>, as much as 75% of talent management is now reliant on ATS technology.

An ATS scans for certain keywords and compliance requirements and will accept or reject applications accordingly. Your resume doesn’t only need to showcase your skills and experience, it must match the electronically programmed criteria to avoid being put on the reject pile. 

You may well be considered the perfect candidate for the job if a real person was reading your resume, but even one minor mistake can have you rejected by a piece of software. 

What can you do to avoid rejection?

The basic requirements of a good resume are an accurate and concise summary of your skills, employment history, experience, qualities, achievements and references. But resumes specifically tailored to relate to the selection criteria and addressing all employer requirements as stipulated in the job ad and position description will really stand out. Be sure to think like both an ATS and a human and include all relevant job-specific keywords throughout your document. 

It's also important to choose a resume design that is suited to the position. The layout of your resume should be well structured, with fonts, dates, titles etc consistently formatted and relevant to the company and job title you're applying to. If you're looking for a technical position in an established firm, then a standard two-page CV format with serif font may be expected. If you're applying for a more modern role within a digital marketing start-up, for instance, a colourful, eye-catching one-page resume with sans-serif font might be best. Spelling mistakes can also be costly, so be sure to edit thoroughly and ideally have someone else check before sending. Follow any directions and submit your resume and cover letter in the requested file format, whether Rich Text or PDF. 

Investing in professional help

Your resume is your best chance at landing an interview. It's where you get to highlight your unique ‘fit’ for the advertised position and stand out above the crowd.

This is one of the most important documents you will ever create, which is why many applicants now consider it a worthwhile investment to get a professional resume writing service to help put together a resume that tells their story, communicates their history, reveals their accomplishments and makes it more likely to progress to the interview stage.

  • Author Nicole C
  • Category ATSResume AdviceResume Content
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