Beat The Bot!

Beat The Bot!


As sad as it is, this image is so true. Applicant Tracking System (ATS) scans are a job seeker’s #1 concern…as if putting together a resume isn’t already difficult enough.

Let’s use some numbers to demonstrate the “black hole” that is the ATS. You are on Indeed and finally find a job to which you’d like to apply. You aren’t the only one.


1000 people see that job, 100 people submit an application, only 25 of those 100 actually get past the ATS and into the hands of a human. Then of those 25, maybe 6 people actually get an interview and 1 person gets a job offer.

How in the world can you ensure that you’re among the 25 that end up in the hands of a human? How do you beat the ATS?


1. Make sure you actually qualify for the job.

2. Keywords in the job description must be on your resume and they must match your skills. I’ve previously posted a blog about mapping a job description to identify the keywords … USE THEM, THEY’RE IMPORTANT!

3. You know they say you have to write a new resume for each job. Incorporating the keywords for each job description into your resume is what they’re talking about. ATS scans heavily weigh keywords in your title, career summary and skills list. They also rank you by how much experience you have listed. A good resume contains about 10 years of experience.

4. Design your resume so that it is robot friendly. Computers and algorithms can’t read graphics or cutesy icons. I’ve seen some resumes with a telephone icon next to their telephone number. Don’t do that for the resume you submit online. Keep those on hand to give to the human who’ll be interviewing you.

5. Uh oh, I just told you to write another resume, didn’t I? YES! Cutesy resume for human, non-cutesy resume for online submission to get past ATS.

6. Stop throwing your resume against walls and hoping it’ll stick. If you’ve gone through these steps and are actually qualified…APPLY. The odds will be ever in your favor.

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