Are you in the market for a new job, and are struggling to gain attention from recruiters? Find out how to get recruiters to acknowledge your resume and give you that screening interview that will get your foot in the door.
What is a recruiter looking for?
If you are looking for the perfect job, you may have shouted this question from a hilltop. What do those darn recruiters want, anyway?
Although every industry is different, professional recruiters say they are looking for the perfect person with hard and soft skills. What does that mean? The ideal candidate usually has technical savvy and expertise while at the same time, excellent communication skills.
Candidates need to be able to write well and speak well, but at the same time, have something valuable to say.
That’s not asking for too much, is it?
How important is the look of my resume?
It’s important. Even the resume fonts are important.
If your resume is not getting you the attention you desire, perhaps something is wrong with it. Hire a company to write and design your resume. Look for a company that understands how to prepare resumes for all industries and experience levels. Look for a resume writing company that also offers to look at your LinkedIn profile and one that understands ATS technology.
Although you may be tempted to save money by writing and designing your resume on your own, think of the expense as an investment in your future. Don’t ruin your chances for a high-paying job because you were too cheap to have a professional analyze how you present yourself to companies.
Do companies really use applicant tracking systems (ATS)?
Yes, companies use ATS screening algorithms. Some studies say that 90% of employers use some applicant tracking system technology.
When a company’s HR department receives your resume, it will be processed using ATS screening software. A hiring manager will search through all the available resumes looking for specific keywords that are important to a particular position. If your resume does not appear in the hiring manager’s search results, you will not receive an interview for that job.
This means that your resume needs to be keyword optimized to pass through those scans. Not only does your font style matter, but your margins and file type is important too.
Perhaps you had success in the past using an outdated resume, but times have changed. Hire a professional resume service to make sure your CV or resume will pass through current ATS screenings.
What keywords are recruiters listening for during interviews?
Sometimes recruiters act as a gateway between you and the hiring manager. These recruiters may not be intimately familiar with a position. In fact, the only knowledge they may have about a position is the same job description that you read before applying for the role. If you are interviewing with a recruiter, make sure you use some of those corresponding keywords that were listed in the job description.
Also, make sure that you let the job recruiter know, in the course of your conversation, that you had taken the time to learn about the company before you met. Tell the recruiter that you read about a specific project the company had completed. Speak about something you learned from the company’s website.
Also, recruiters are looking for someone excited about the position. They want to send qualified and enthusiastic candidates to the hiring managers. If you act like a dud, they may not recommend you with the same amount of enthusiasm as they would another more excited candidate.
What questions should I ask a recruiter?
Ask the recruiter to tell you about the hiring manager. Hopefully, the recruiter will share with you some tidbit of knowledge that will give you the upper hand in the next level of interviews. For example, maybe the hiring manager values a particular type of technical expertise over another. If you know this, you can highlight your experience in that specific technology over one that is less important.
In the same line of questioning, you may want to ask the recruiter what the three or four most important skills are for the position you are seeking. This will allow you to see if you are a good fit for the job or whether you should spend more time seeking employment that better suits your skills.
Finally, ask the recruiter reasons that other candidates haven’t been selected. This will give you a leg up to understand how to highlight your best traits that are important for the job.