28 February 2024

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Optimizing Your Resume

Optimizing Your Resume for ATS: Key Strategies

You spend hours optimizing your resume, ensuring that it best represents your skills and experience. After all, your resume is your most important tool when it comes to job seeking.

Even though you’ve put in a lot of effort, you’re still not receiving enough interviews, even for positions you know you’re qualified for. So why not?

What you may not realise is that when you submit your resume, it is frequently sent to a machine rather than a human.

In fact, it’s possible that no one will ever read your resume!

This is because an increasing number of businesses are screening resumes using applicant tracking systems (ATS).

Exactly what is an ATS? It’s computer software that scans resumes for certain keywords and filters out those that don’t match the job description.

So, if you want your resume to get into the hands of a human being, make sure it’s optimizing your resume for the ATS.

In this article, we’ll teach you 8 things you need to know about applicant tracking systems, such as what they are, how they work, and, most importantly, how to “beat” them!

What is an ATS?

The hiring process may be time-consuming and irritating for both companies and job seekers.

Many businesses have begun to use applicant tracking systems (ATS) to expedite the process.

An applicant tracking system (ATS) is a type of software that controls the recruiting process. This is accomplished by collecting and sorting thousands of resumes.

recruiting managers may then use the ATS to screen candidates and follow their progress through the recruiting process. An ATS saves companies time and money by scanning the employment process in this way.

How do applicant tracking systems work for optimizing your resume?

There are 4 basic steps to how an applicant tracking system works for optimizing your resume:

  • The ATS receives a job request. This requisition contains work-related information such as the job title, appealing abilities, and needed experience.
  • This information is then used by the ATS to construct a profile for the perfect applicant.
  • The ATS parses, classifies, and ranks candidates’ optimizing your resume depending on how well they match the profile.
  • The hiring managers then swiftly select the best prospects and advance them through the hiring process.

If a recruiter is looking for an Administrative Assistant and there are 500 resumes, their first step would most likely be to search for “Administrative Assistant.” This eliminates applicants who have already performed the same task.

Anyone without that specific word on their résumé is out of luck!

A search may include numerous terms. Recruiters, for example, may do a complicated search that includes a combination of job titles and skills:

Administrative assistant, data entry, payroll…

It also means that optimizing your resume keywords that recruiters will use in their search can considerably boost your chances of progressing in the recruiting process.

However, you are not required to guess which keywords to employ. You only need to look through the job description to locate them.

Jobscan’s resume scanner simplifies your hiring process by optimizing your resume against the job description using AI technology. It then shows you the top resume skills and keywords that are missing from your resume.

What is the difference between an ATS and a CRM?

When it comes to recruitment software, there are two basic types:

  • ATS (Applicant Tracking Systems)
  • CRM (Candidate Relationship Management) Systems

Let’s take a short look at each system.

ATS software, which includes capabilities like as resume processing, candidate screening, and evaluation tools, can be used during the recruiting process.

The disadvantage of ATS software is that it only records job applicants who have already applied to your organisation.

Top businesses hire for many positions at once and receive hundreds of applicants for each opportunity. Because applying for a job online is easier than ever, many of these candidates are unqualified and decided “it was worth a try.”

CRM systems, on the other hand, are used during the recruiting process to target potential applicants who have not yet applied to your organisation.

CRM capabilities include email marketing, scheduling, and communication tools to help potential candidates create relationships.

Whereas ATS only provide data that applicants enter voluntarily, CRMs allow you to enter information about prospective talent that you uncover. In other words, ATS are reactive, but CRMs are proactive.

You are not required to select between the two systems. Many businesses utilise both!

Key features of an applicant tracking system

Applicant tracking systems allow users to apply for jobs from any device, without having to log in. As a result, businesses profit from a bigger pool of candidates.

Companies use ATS software to automatically uncover and promote top prospects since there are so many applicants.

Other important characteristics of ATS software include:

  • Resume parsing – Entails extracting information from resumes such as contact information, employment experience, educational background, and talents.
  • Advanced search- Enables you to filter applications by keywords, job titles, skills, experience, education, and other criteria.
  • Candidate sourcing- Enables you to actively seek for, identify, and contact possible applicants for available positions.
  • Multi-channel candidate sourcing- Enables you to find suitable applicants through a variety of channels, including as job boards, social media, and employee recommendations.
  • In built CRM software designed- Some ATS include CRM software to meet all of your demands on a single platform.
  • Email templates – Most applicant tracking systems (ATS) include email templates to ensure that all interaction with candidates is uniform and professional and optimizing your resume.
  • Advanced analytics and reporting – Enables you to produce thorough reports on job candidates, hiring patterns, and other data.
  • Various integrations – Imply that the ATS can communicate with various types of software, such as email marketing software, accounting software, and CRM systems.
  • Interview scheduling – By automating interviews, you will save time rescheduling, sending out reminders, and organising various calendars.
  • Real-time collaboration – Enables employees from many sections of the organisation to participate in the sourcing, screening, and optimizing your resume for decision-making process for new hiring.
  • Automation based on certain events and conditions – This implies that your ATS will only be activated if a specific situation happens.

How accurate is ATS software?

While it is true that ATS can save recruiters time and effort throughout the hiring process, the fact is that these systems are far from ideal.

According to a Harvard Business Review research, 88 percent of recruiters believe that good candidates were disregarded by an ATS because they “did not match the exact criteria established by the job description.”

This shows that ATS focuses too much attention on keywords and fails to consider a candidate’s abilities, experience, or credentials.

As a result, many great individuals are passed over just because their resumes lack the appropriate keywords!

Who use of ATS?

The majority of large corporations use applicant tracking systems in a number of ways.

According to Jobscan study, over 98.8% of the companies on the Fortune 500 list use ATS, while a Kelly OCG poll revealed that 66% of major corporations and 35% of small organisations use hiring software. These figures continue to rise.

If you’re applying to a major company, you’ll almost certainly confront an ATS.

You are submitting your application through an ATS if you use any online form.

Indeed and LinkedIn, for example, have their own built-in ATS.

It seems obvious that ATS is here to stay. That’s why it’s critical to use the proper keywords and optimizing your resume in a way that ATS software can easily understand.

Why do companies use applicant tracking systems?

When you think about it, today’s employers are faced with a daunting task when it comes to hiring new employees.

This is because the internet has made it simple for job searchers to submit applications, thus they do so in large numbers. Many of these candidates are unqualified and thought “it was worth a try.”

As a result, corporate recruiters now get hundreds, if not thousands, of resumes for each job opportunity. That is why they require an ATS.

These automated tools streamline and accelerate the hiring process, saving companies time and money.

Applicant tracking systems in the future

Without a doubt, artificial intelligence (AI) is fast changing the world of hiring. AI-powered application tracking systems (ATS) are already optimizing your resume, identifying suitable applicants, and performing preliminary interviews.

As AI advances, it is expected that ATS software will become more complex.

These technologies are likely to be more extensively connected with social media sites such as LinkedIn in the future. They will be able to find both active and passive applicants who are a suitable fit for available positions as a result of this.

Chatbots powered by AI might also be used to answer queries and offer information about the application process.

Finally, AI has the ability to transform the recruitment environment in a variety of ways, making the process faster, easier, and more efficient for all parties involved.

What exactly is an ATS optimizing your resume?

There is no one-size-fits-all method for “beating” applicant tracking systems.

Getting through an ATS and securing a job interview necessitates a well-written résumé that considers both the ATS algorithms and the individuals pushing the buttons.

Here’s our most basic advice for beating an ATS:

  • Every time you apply, carefully modify your resume to the job description.
  • Match your resume keywords to the job description to optimizing your resume for ATS search and ranking algorithms.
  • For optimum searchability, use both the long-form and acronym versions of keywords (e.g., “Master of Business Administration (MBA)” or “Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)”).
  • Avoid the functional resume structure in favour of a chronological or hybrid resume.
  • Tables and columns should be avoided since they frequently create serious parsing issues.
  • Use a classic resume typeface such as Helvetica, Garamond, or Georgia.
  • Use of headers and footers may result in information loss or a parsing error.
  • Use basic resume section names such as “Work Experience” rather than being unique or funny.
  • If feasible, save your file as a.docx.

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