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Resume 101: How to Create ATS-Approved Resumes

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Resume 101: How to Create ATS-Approved Resumes

In today's competitive job market, crafting a winning resume is more crucial than ever. With Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) becoming the norm in recruitment processes, it's essential to ensure your resume is optimized to pass through these digital gatekeepers. In this guide, we'll explore the ins and outs of creating ATS-approved resumes that catch the eye of potential employers. 

Understanding ATS and Why It Matters 

Before diving into the nitty-gritty of resume optimization, let's first understand what an Applicant Tracking System is and why it's essential to tailor your resume accordingly. ATS is software used by employers to streamline the hiring process by scanning, sorting, and ranking resumes based on specific keywords and criteria. Failure to optimize your resume for ATS could result in it being overlooked, regardless of your qualifications and experience.

Crafting an ATS-Friendly Resume

 Now that we grasp the significance of ATS, let's delve into the steps to create a resume that resonates with these digital gatekeepers. Start by choosing an ATS-approved resume format, such as the reverse-chronological or combination format. These formats emphasize your work experience and skills in a clear and structured manner, making it easier for ATS to parse relevant information.

Incorporating Keywords for ATS 

When dealing with ATS, it's crucial to use the right keywords to catch the eye of both computer systems and human recruiters. Tosh Onishi, the Head of Talent Acquisition in Asia Pacific for Visa, shared some wisdom during a recent event by Half the Sky's Women of Tomorrow. He warned against “hacking the system” by stuffing your resume with keywords to the point where it loses coherence. Remember, real people will be reading your resume in the end. As Tosh emphasized, relying solely on automated recruitment processes neglects the human touch in the hiring process. He expressed his skepticism towards technologies that diminish this human element, emphasizing the importance of networking. He mentioned, "It's not just what you know, but who you know." This means your connections can really help you get noticed. So, don't underestimate the power of networking when you're job hunting.

Formatting and Presentation Matters

 In addition to content, the formatting and presentation of your resume play a crucial role in its effectiveness. Keep your resume clean, concise, and easy to read, using a professional font and appropriate spacing. Avoid fancy graphics or elaborate designs that could confuse ATS or distract hiring managers. Stick to a standard file format like PDF to ensure compatibility across different systems.

Creating an ATS-approved resume is a skill that every job seeker should master in today's digital age. By understanding the inner workings of Applicant Tracking Systems and tailoring your resume accordingly, you can significantly increase your chances of landing your dream job. Remember to keep your resume updated and continuously refine it based on feedback and industry trends. With the right approach and attention to detail, you'll be well on your way to success in your career journey.

Ready to put your newly optimized resume to the test? Check out our latest job opportunities with Companies that Care who provide flexible working arrangements, equal pay initiatives, mentorship programs, and many more!

Half the Sky's mission is to supply the tools that can give every woman the ability to build a successful career and be fully prepared for the future of work. So, that they can lead a healthy, prosperous and more balanced/blended lifestyle of their choosing.  By building your confidence, you’re setting foundations to empower yourself and your career.  The world is your oyster, and it starts with you. 

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