Seven seconds. According to a 2018 Eye-Tracking Study, that’s the average amount of time a job recruiter spends reviewing a resume. For a job seeker, this means creating a resume strong enough to catch a recruiter’s attention and prompt an invitation to interview.
So, what’s the key to ensuring your resume stands out from other applicants’?
By customizing your resume to address what the employer is looking for and demonstrating how and why you are the ideal fit for that role, you are strongly increasing the likelihood of obtaining an interview.
Additionally, many employers use software called applicant tracking systems (ATS) to filter resumes based on the requirements of a role. This means job seekers must pass an initial electronic screen to move on to the next round of recruitment. Customizing your resume for the requirements of the position you’re applying for will help you pass through the ATS, help get your resume to a hiring manager, and ultimately in the door for an interview.
Here are a few tips to help you customize your resume to get more interviews:
Also, if your resume uses synonyms of words included in the job description, be sure to replace them with words specified in the description. For example, if your resume says, “teach,” while the job description says, “educate,” swap it out so that your relevant qualifications are apparent to both recruiters and ATS reviewing your resume.
From there, tailor your resume to address some of these values. For example, mention specific projects you’ve led or worked on and volunteer activities you’ve participated in that align with the organization’s values. This can even be shared through a “Related Experience” section at the end of your resume.
If the office is in an open-office space, include a point about a project you worked on collaboratively. If this is a role where you would be working from home with little supervision, include a bullet in your summary section about your ability to work independently. Even still, if you are a person with a disability and know that an employer has expressed a commitment to disability inclusive hiring, you may choose to mention your leadership or participation in a disability-focused Employee Resource Group or other disability-focused organization.
Customizing a resume for the jobs you apply for will make you stand out to employers. The extra time you take to match your skills and experiences to an employer’s priorities and values demonstrate that you are serious about the job opportunity. This also helps hiring managers quickly see how well-qualified you are for a position and will make you more likely to receive an invitation to interview.
For more on how to customize your resume to get more interviews, contact the Getting Hired team.
Contributions to this blog were made by Andraéa LaVant of Solutions Marketing Group.