14 tips for getting your resume through an applicant tracking system (free PDF)

Today’s job seekers have to be savvy about the screening and hiring process, and that includes mastering the art of dealing with applicant tracking systems. This list offers guidelines to prevent needless rejection by screening software.

From the list:

Applying for a job takes time and effort, especially when navigating online application software. And sometimes, you may submit your resume only to be rejected by applicant tracking systems due to formatting issues, according to a report from Great Resumes Fast.

More than 98% of Fortune 500 companies use applicant tracking software to parse through resumes, according to a Jobscan report. So it’s important to make sure your resume is formatted to advance through the system and make it to the hiring manager’s desk.

This is even true at the executive level, the report noted. “Many executives and C-level job seekers assume that at that level, they don’t need to be concerned with Applicant Tracking Systems. However, it is important to keep in mind that many companies use ATS for regulatory compliance with fair hiring practices, so an ATS scan might still be a part of the process, even for high-level employees who network their way to an interview.”

Here are 15 suggestions from the report for formatting your resume so it will easily pass through screening systems and connect with employers.

Target your resume to a specific role
Applicant tracking systems are built on the premise that a quality candidate will have a targeted, focused resume that includes relevant keywords found in the job posting. Candidates should look through the posting for important qualifications, skills, and experience and add applicable keywords to their resume.

Know where to include keywords
Applicants should place keywords throughout every section of their resume. When tailoring a resume for a specific job posting, it’s easiest to swap in keywords in the Key Competencies/Areas of Expertise section.

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