By Richard Grant, SNHU Career Advisor
Eight seconds. If you want to capture the attention of an employer reading your resume, you need to do it in about that time. Employers receive hundreds of resumes for every job opening, and they don’t have much time to narrow down the pool.
In some cases your resume might not be read at all. Many employers use “applicant tracking systems,” or ATS. If you apply for a position through an organization’s website, chances are your resume will be scanned by the ATS for keywords. If you don’t have the right experience or use the right keywords, your resume might not see the light of day.
Omar Hernandez, national expansion recruiter for Total Quality Logistics, uses several keywords, such as “motivated,” “negotiate” and “cold call,” when seeking qualified sales professionals.
“It is imperative for anyone who is preparing their resume for review to consider ways to include key buzzwords in their resume that accurately reflect not only their professional experience but their personality as well,” advises Hernandez. “We hire for personality, ambition and character, and it is extremely challenging for our company to identify the right talent without the candidate putting their own characteristics and qualifications on their resume.”
To determine the appropriate keywords to use:
Study the job description. The detailed job posting will provide a wealth of information about what the position entails. Notice which words the employer uses to describe the aspects of the job.
Talk with an insider. Speak with someone who works there to find out what initiatives are important to the organization and what systems they use.
Winning the job interview can be a challenge, but it’s easier to advance in the application process if you “speak the same language” as the employer.
For assistance with your resume, contact your SNHU Career advisor.