After COVID-19 Pandemic, how can you seek for a proper job? In this series “Job Seeking Post COVID-19“, Seed will guide you – the job seekers – through the way to enrich your knowledge and help you achieve your ultimate goal: to get a job in your desired industry.
In part 2, we’ll tell you a secret to impress all the HR recruiter or employers out there in this 4.0 era: Making your CV become ATS-friendly.
What is an applicant tracking system?
An applicant tracking system — or ATS, for short — is a type of software used by recruiters and employers during the hiring process. This process includes collecting, sorting, scanning, and ranking the job applications they receive for their open positions.
How do applicant tracking systems (ATS) work?
Applicant tracking systems act as an electronic gatekeeper for an employer. The ATS parses a resume’s content into categories and then scans it for specific keywords to determine if the job application should pass along to the recruiter.
Its job is to toss the least-qualified candidates, rather than identify the applicants who are the best fit. Unfortunately, that means if you did not write and format a resume with the ATS in mind, a qualified candidate can be easily passed over.
How to write an ATS-friendly resume
1. Export your resume as a PDF file
Use a PDF version of your resume. However, if the system does not specify which file types are compatible, play it safe and stick to a Word document in .doc or .docx.
2. Don’t put important details in the header or footer
Placing important contact details (such as your name, phone number, or email address) outside the header or footer of your resume.
3. Optimise your resume with keywords
Include the keywords representing the soft skills and hard skills you possess and the expertise you’ve acquired over the years (that qualify you for your target job).
4. Avoid images, charts, and other graphics
While these may look nice to the human eye, resumes with embedded images become a garbled mess, or get completely omitted from your application, after it passes through the ATS.
5. Stick to simple bullet points
Avoid using intricate characters when creating a bulleted list on your resume. Stick to the simplest options, such as a solid circle, open circle, or square, to ensure your bullet points enhance your resume.
6. Use a clean resume design with a clear hierarchy
When it comes to your resume’s design, less is more. Complex resume designs or unusual formats confuse most applicant tracking systems. Also, they annoy recruiters, who are accustomed to quickly scanning a resume for specific information, they expect to find in particular areas within the document.