Applicant Tracking System: How Can Resume Beat the Check?By Vik Vein Last Modified 2019-12-08
The situation when a perfect candidate sends a resume and gets rejected is very unfair and also common during the job search. This is the reason job seekers might get discouraged by Applicant Tracking System.
Are you sure you know whom you are trying to impress? While most candidates think their resumes have a few seconds to grab manager’s attention, in fact, they have none.
If a company has more than fifty workers, a resume is very likely to be screened by ATS resume checker. Luckily, resume specialists know exactly how to create an ATS-friendly resume that can survive the robots’ estimation.
Realize What You Deal With
The idea that your resume will have to face the ATS test should influence your resume writing strategy a lot. The first step to get prepared is to get all the necessary information about ATS resume scanning and realize how the system works.
The Applicant Tracking System is used by companies to process a great number of resumes. During this initial check, the ATS estimates the resumes and rejects about seventy percent of them. The ATS is focused on the correct format of the document and the required qualifications.
You have chances to get an interview invitation only if your document matches the ATS resume format. Otherwise, the system is likely to send an automated rejection e-mail after the test. So, make sure you are familiar with the requirements and learn how to write resume outline first.
Keep It Simple
Although fancy fonts and graphics might grab the attention of a hiring manager, when it comes to robots, unusual formatting can only make it worse.
According to studies mentioned in Forbes, about 75% of great candidates do not pass through the ATS because of incorrect resume format. After checking some ATS-friendly resume templates, it is easy to notice the basic tendencies.
As PDF documents are not always readable for ATS to begin with, so it is better to choose Word format. Consider choosing standard fonts like Verdana, Arial, or Times New Roman. Tables, columns, text boxes, images can damage the readability of your resume.
Include Targeted Keywords
The ATS does not read the whole text of your resume. It only looks for the targeted keywords. The lack of necessary keywords might ruin your chances to pass the test. Carefully estimate the key points of your resume to learn which words are actually important for this particular position.
The ATS resume should also contain professional terms and jargons. Review the vacancy carefully and find the words that describe the qualifications of a perfect candidate. An ATS-friendly resume template might also give you a hint of what phrases to choose. It might be useful to check other vacancies in the industry.
Make a list of key phrases and put them on your resume. It is very likely that a manager entered these keywords in software and system will look for them. If the percentage of keywords is high, a resume will pass the test.
Use Standard Headings
Creative headings are often used by candidates to make their resumes stand out. It is possible to see “things I am good at” instead of “skills”, or “my best results” instead of “achievements”.
This tactic is harmful when it comes to an ATS resume. The system does not recognize creative headings and any unusual categories. It is not the coincidence that an ATS resume template has standard notions like “skills”, “education”, and “work experience”.
When Bersin&Associates made research on ATS resumes, they created a perfect resume of the most suitable candidate and it got only forty-three percent relevance.
The part of information was not recognized by robots because of changed standards and bad formatting. Unconventional approaches might ruin the chances to pass the ATS check.
Also, don’t forget to check if some of your job search expenses are deductible!
Pay Attention to Dates and Abbreviations
Dates and abbreviations in your resume give you more chances to survive the ATS check. The system is likely to screen dates to find out if the candidate has enough experience for the position.
An ATS resume sample often offers the chronological format. Mentioning the years in your experience section could help your resume to go through.
A manager is very likely to enter the professional abbreviations in software. It means you should also use them on your resume. The system recognizes the abbreviations and acronyms only if they are spelled out. Keep in mind these important details to beat the ATS.
The ATS scanning causes disputes and there are various opinions about this check. The candidates often find it stressful and irrelevant. Some even give up to write the resume on their own and use online resume generator.
At the same time, 94% of recruiters believe that ATS has a positive impact on the hiring process in their company.
The ATS test could be passed if the candidate pays attention to formatting, keywords, and some other details previously mentioned in this article. Keep this information in mind and the robots won’t prevent you from getting hired.