A study by Glassdoor suggests that only 2% percent of the total candidates are called for an interview. So, you need to get everything right to be in that category.
Your first point of contact with the recruiter will be through a resume. You submit your application and if they like your resume, they will contact you for an interview.
But, it is not that easy. The same study by Glassdoor states that a job post attracts nearly 250 applicants.
Basically, in today’s job market, an average resume will not work. Your resume needs to be specific to the job you are applying for. Moreover, it has to have essentials or requirements listed in the job post.
In this guide, that is what we are going to cover. We will look at a few pro-tips that will help you make a job-specific resume and bolster your chances of landing a job.
Optimizing to pass the applicant tracking system
This is highly critical if you are applying for larger companies or corporations. As these organizations receive an overwhelming number of applications, they use talent management systems like the applicant tracking system to screen resumes.
ATS helps shortlist resumes that are relevant to the target profile. To make your resume specific to a particular job, you need to optimize the document to pass this test.
Here is how you can achieve that:
- Use a template: Avoid using generic templates that you pick from Word or Google docs. Use ATS-optimized resume templates that can be easily parsed and are compatible with such talent management software.
- Incorporate keywords: Research about your industry and target profile to find important keywords that you can add to your resume. Add these keywords in the work experience, skills section, or as modules under a degree/certification.
- Add numbers: Quantify your achievements by adding numbers or performance figures. Basically, you need to validate the keywords you add to your resume, quantifying these is a great way to do that. For example, if you need to add “blogging”, you can write “Authored 15+ blogs in a month”.
Utilizing the job description
Hiring managers want to look at familiar keywords and the required expertise they have mentioned in the job description.
Basically, each post is different, and adding these keywords will completely transform your resume according to the target profile.
Let’s take a look at how you can optimize your resume as per the job description:
- Area of expertise: Try to include all the proficiencies outlined in the job description to the “key skills” section in your resume. Moreover, only add the skills that you are familiar with and can validate during the interview.
- Transferable skills: Go through the job post and look for the required soft/transferable skills. For example, if it states that the ideal candidates should have good interpersonal skills, then highlight it in your resume. But, do not directly mention it. Write points like cross-functional team coordination, client relationship management, team liaison, etc.
Research the existing employees
Utilize LinkedIn or Glassdoor to find the existing employees of the organization you are applying for. Researching the existing employees who hold the job you are targeting can help to improve your resume.
Ideally, you will be able to find the skills and expertise they have listed on their profiles. If you are proficient in the listed skills, add it to your resume.
The idea is to highlight them throughout the document wherever you can so that your resume seems familiar to the recruiter.
Write a summary
A resume summary is added to the top third of the document and it is highly likely that recruiters will read it first.
It is the best place to highlight the most important skills and requirements. For example, let’s say you need to highlight the following pointers:
- Minimum experience of 4 years
- Proficient in content marketing
- Should hold a certification in digital marketing
Here is how you can add them to the summary:
“4+ years experienced Certified Digital Marketing Associate with a stellar record in improving a company’s online presence by incorporating content marketing strategies. Adept at composing SEO-optimized content to enhance the blog objective and market reach.”
Here are a few key takeaways from the article:
- Use an ATS-optimized resume template.
- Read the job description thoroughly to extract keywords.
- Research the existing employees of the company through LinkedIn or Glassdoor.
- Write a professional summary to mention all the key requirements.
Dan Carter was a reporter for nomad Labs, before becoming the lead editor. Dan has over forty bylines and has reported on countless stories concerning all things related to tech and science. Dan studied at CSUF.