ATS Demystified — Easy Steps to Optimize Your Resume

Applicant Tracking Systems are the recruiters’ gatekeeper, designed to only let the most qualified applicants through for review. Keywords and categorizations are the magic formula to ensure your resume is seen by human eyes.

  • Use Word format – PDF is more difficult for the ATS to decipher.
  • Work keywords from the job description into your resume – but refrain from exaggeration.
  • Simple bullet points are ideal, never hide important details in the header or footer.
  • Avoid images, charts, tables, or any type of graphic. The ATS ignores these.
  • Customize your resume for every new opportunity.
  • Each time you apply, save your customized resume with a new file name that matches the job title.
  • Subscribe to an ATS review program that will scan both your resume and the job description, then make suggestions for an optimized resume. Our favorite is JobScan: