Are your applications repeatedly being rejected or ignored – even though you know full well that you could do the job – receiving nothing more than an automated ‘thanks but no thanks’ at best?

Welcome to the new age of recruitment and the Applicant Tracking System (ATS). In this age, many recruitment agencies and employers rely on automated computer software to pre-filter cover letters and résumés. The ATS software uses what can essentially be described as robots to scan job applications for keywords from the job advertisement. Résumés only go on to be viewed by a human being if the system matches the résumé to the job ad.

While this may seem harsh, it is an effective way for busy hiring managers or recruiters to weed out applications from candidates that aren’t qualified or suitable for the job. Unfortunately, however, ATS systems also eliminate résumés and cover letters from suitable candidates because they don’t contain the necessary keywords or conform to the standard format.

How to satisfy an ATS

The good news is that you can increase the chances of your cover letter and résumé satisfying the ATS and making it onto the desk of the recruiter or manager by following a few simple tips:

  • Use the exact terms featured in the job advertisement to ensure that your application contains the keywords the system is looking for. For example, for an Administrative Assistant position, the ATS will be searching for the words ‘administrative assistant’ in order to identify applicants that have done that job before.
  • Sprinkle other keywords from the advertisement throughout your cover letter and résumé, but be careful to use them in the correct context and not to overdo it.
  • Use a standard format (.docx or .doc file), font and layout. It can be tempting to jazz up your resume with graphics and tables, but the ATS won’t see these.
  • Use straightforward headings, such as Career Profile, Qualifications & Career History.
  • Avoid acronyms (usually only you know what the acronym stands for).

The Proven Group: Supporting you at every stage of your career journey

The Proven Group won’t let your application slip through the cracks. We know how to identify the keywords in a job ad and strategically structure your résumé and cover letter to ensure that they include them. This will result in your application being noticed.

The Proven Group involves you in every stage of preparing your job application documents. Your job application documents will represent you and they will not be a template from the internet. This way, you get to read and approve exactly what you are paying for, which is why our clients are 100% satisfied with their documents.

The Proven Group provides professional cover-letter and résumé-writing services in Melbourne, Ballarat and Geelong. In addition to these services, we have a range of add-ons, including interview coaching, LinkedIn profile writing and how to address key selection criteria. Contact us today to discuss our services.

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