How to Get Your Resume Past the System and Into Human Hands

past the applicant tracking system


It often happens that landing an interview with an organization of your dreams seems impossible without any internal connections that vouch for your candidacy. Even if you seem to apply, your resume always gets chucked out by the blunt applicant tracking system that has been creating a trash of candidate profiles, since ever.

Obviously you cannot blame the HR. With all the applications they receive, it’s almost impossible to review each resume and find out how perfect of an applicant you are!

According to the concept of ‘hiring funnel’, only 25 out of every 100 resumes pass the screening process and reach the employer for further reviewing. It might be the contextual key phrases and keywords you missed out on, but everything stands pretty much futile if the resume gets halted mid-way.

Shared below are a few tips that will make it easier for you to get past the machine and make it to the interview room without any such hassle whatsoever.


Start with the Required Work Experience and Qualifications

It is highly important that while you read the job description, the work experience and required qualifications should be taken into account. Employers will always make it a point to list out the minimum requirements that stand indispensable according to them and these would act as the primary resume filters. So, mismatch would any time filter you out from the whole process.

For instance, if the recruiter is looking for people with a year’s experience and Master’s degree in the field of engineering, his filters would only show the applicants who meet the criteria. Re-iterating, it’s highly important that you look into the same and craft your resume accordingly.


Complicated Formatting Isn’t Required!

Many-a-times it happens that job seekers lose the race, just by making their resume overly-creative and too complicated for the tracking system to source it. All that’s required is simplicity and conformity with the job-role requirements. Delete any extra touches and stick to standard resume format. For instance, stick to fonts like the Times New Roman, Arial, Calibri or Courier.

Whatever the job role is, make it a point to include mandatory sections like Qualifications, Professional Experience, Skills etc. Last but not the least, send your resume as a Word Doc. While, various systems are becoming increasingly better in reading the rich text PDF files, they still tend to miss out on a few important things.


Target Keywords and Use Bullet Points Wherever Necessary

There are terms that define a profession. In addition to this, there also are skills, certifications, lingoes and duties that support your prowess in the field and hence your candidacy. Filters used by various hiring managers are quite specific while searching for contextual information. Hence, it deems fit if you read the job description carefully and use relatable terms in your resume. Use services like Wordle and TagCrowd to create a word cloud out of the description and map all necessary key phrases and words.

Moreover, you can also use bullet points instead of writing full paragraphs to show your skills and accomplishments in the field. This makes it highly easy-a-task for the filter or humans to scan the text within a few seconds only.


Keep it Online to Maximize the Chances

In a time when half the corporate world has shifted to online platforms, it’s a dire necessity to shift your resume to various networking websites. In most of the cases, the data from your resume will be used to fill up a web form, hence checking all entries for validity is equally necessary. Pay special attention to field with an asterisk, as you won’t be able to make it past the tracking system without filling in these. However, put in place a high priority networking strategy still, to have people from your online connections vouching for you during the recruitment process.

It’s more or less about the basic you need to keep in mind. Once, your resume gets shortlisted, an interview is the only thing that stands between you and the job of your dreams.

Happy job hunting!

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Categories: CV Writing

About Anshuman Kukreti

Anshuman Kukreti is a professional writer and a keen follower of the global job market. An engineer by qualification and an artist at heart, he writes on various topics relating to employment across the globe.

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