Eight Steps to Help You Relate to the Job Search Robot

Human hand reaching out to robot hand and touching fingers
Human hand reaching out to AI robot hand and touching fingers

In this day of digital marketing media and job search, you must keyword focus your résumé to the automated robot. Companies receive hundreds of applications for one job opening so they need help to sort through applicants. This AI (artificial intelligence built into the software) will sort and send qualifying documents through the applicant tracking system (ATS) system.

A screenshot of LinkedIn Recruiter platform and its many tools
Besides optimizing and targeting each résumé, you should use your “master résumé” to optimize your LinkedIn profile with keywords from the industry you are targeting.

Even if you are the world’s best candidate your LinkedIn profile, or résumé you uploaded may get nowhere unless you can relate to the robot. You may be qualified but if your documents are not laser-focused on the company’s needs with measurable accomplishments, your documents may not make it to the top of the pile.

Of course, there are certain industries and job roles where recruiters will seek you out even if you have bare-bones résumés in a template you found on the web. However, if you are not one of the sought-after lucky ones, you need extra help from artificial intelligence.

You can use the same technology that filters you out when you do not tailor each résumé to the job ad to reverse engineer the process so your profile and résumé turn up in a recruiter search.

Just follow these steps:

  1. Use https://skillsyncer.com or https://jobscan.co to scan your résumé against the job ad you wish to apply to.
  2. The resulting report will tell you what keywords are in the ad but not in your résumé. Insert not all but 75% of the words by rewriting certain sections in a grammatically correct way.
  3. Follow all the tips that the report gives you and try to change about 60-70% of what you can. I always tell my clients that their match score should be at least 60% or better.
  4. Once you have raised your job match score for your résumé to the job ad then you can follow the same process with your cover letter. No cover letters are not dead and can make the difference in landing the interview or not.
  5. Research the company’s ‘About’ and ‘Mission’ pages on their website and write your own career story aligning it with their culture and goals.  
  6. Write another section below that listing bullet points from their job advertisement on the left (their job requirements) and write how your skills can help them on the right. List actual skills or previous examples if possible.
  7. Perform the same keyword scan for the cover letter against the job advertisement.
  8. Follow the SkillSyncer or JobScan report’s instructions and change at least 40-60% of the content to align with the job ad provided you have the skills but the job advertisement phrases them differently or uses different words.
Facts about how ATS systems filter job applicants
Facts about applicant tracking systems and how they eliminate candidates to achieve their shortlist

You may wonder if there are any companies that do not use Applicant Tracking Systems to review résumés. HINT: If a company receives over five résumés for an open job, then they likely use an ATS. Since smaller businesses create the most jobs, we can assume that both smaller Fortune 100, Fortune 500, and larger corporations all use ATS’s to help them sort and filter candidates. According to 2019 statistics, an average of 250 résumés come in for one job posting. Click on the image below for additional mind-bending stats.

Stats about how many résumés are received for one open job
(Source: Glassdoor Image Credit: Zety Blog)

According to our own ATS research and informational webinars attended hosted by Pat Criscito we learn the hard truth’s that we need to always assume that the documents we submit including cover letters will always go into an applicant tracking system. Companies do this so they can refer to their database for future job openings and maintain their sanity while searching through hundreds of applications. They could never physically review that many résumés.

“There is no way to know for sure. You should always assume a résumé will become part of an ATS system if you upload it or attach it to an email message. However, some of the engineers I interviewed said, “Typically, if a company has 4–5 open positions per month consistently, they should be using an ATS.” One company said that 100% of Fortune 1000 companies use ATS and 80% of small/medium businesses use them (100 to 15,000 employees).”

Pat Criscito – Résumé Writer and Author

Keep all of this in mind when you apply for jobs. The fact that only an average of six people make it to the final shortlist of candidates from an average of 250 shows you what kind of competition is out there. You can raise your percentage score of matching the job ad and getting a call for an interview by following the steps I have outlined here. So besides writing a sharp-looking résumé to print to bring on the interview, start the job search process correctly by using technology to help you. Use your LinkedIn profile, which when used correctly can help to shorten your job search because recruiters are finding you from keywords they enter. Read my new eBook to learn about LinkedIn profile optimization here. You can also find FREE tips on how to improve your profile here.

As always we wish you the best of luck in your job search!

Mill Montejo aka the Job Search Superhero