Today we about a few tips on how to make your resume more search-able or scan-able. Why is this important? If your resume cannot be searched by the employer’s software your job application will be like a needle in a haystack.
Gone are the days when employers stuck a help wanted sign in the front window hoping for someone to apply. Today’s employers use online job boards like monster.com career builder.com to post their jobs and look for talented jobseekers. Job search engines like MEXTR.COM, simply hired.ca, and indeed.com all utilize online technology to match employers with job seekers. As such a CV that is searchable, scannable is the resume that will catch an employer’s attention.
Abbreviations on resumes
All too often I see resumes that contain abbreviations without spelling the long form of the word out. By using only abbreviations you are severely limiting your resume from being discovered by a potential employer. This is especially true when the resumes are first screened by someone other than the hiring manager.that the position will report to. For example if incoming resumes are first screened by administrative support or Junior HR assistant’s they may not know all the industry acronyms. As a result they may not key in the right acronym to find your job application. So for instance if you are an accountant who holds CA you should also make sure you insert the words chartered accountant in your CV. By doing this you will double your chances that your job application will be discovered.
Just like abbreviations industry jargon should be complemented with the layman’s term. So for example, suppose you are writing a software developer resume you should indicate that you design user interfaces and somewhere else use the word GUI. Again using both industry jargon along with the layman’s term will maximize your chances that your resume will be noticed.
It’s critical that you use simple formatting. Trying managers who look at resumes all day really appreciate a nice clean simple CV. I try to say is that whitespace is your friend. Most resume writers don’t understand that each word on your CV competes with the other one for eyeball attention. Each word on your resume competes and waters down the next.
Simple formatting means avoid using overly fancy fonts, complex tables, and colors. Yes I did say colors. Believe it or not I’ve seen thousands of resumes that have fancy fonts and colors. Unless you’re applying for artistic jobs then I would definitely stick with a simple professional presentation. Even with artistic jobs such as graphic designers, special effects, and animators fancy fonts and colors won’t get you a job. In these professions a portfolio of your previous artwork projects and so forth will make all the difference. As for fonts Arial and Times new Roman are among the best, because almost every recruitment software recognizes these fonts.