An applicant tracking system (ATS) is a software application that manages the recruiting and hiring process, including job posting and job applications. ATS fulfills two purposes: first, it manages applications for positions, especially where there is a high volume of applicants, and second, it helps hiring managers and recruiters identify candidates with the required skills, education, and experience more quickly.

Research indicates that almost all major companies now use ATS as part of their hiring process. 99% of fortune 500 companies and an increasing number of small and mid-sized businesses filter resumes through an ATS before someone takes a look.

The challenge for job seekers is that even if they are qualified for a job if their resume isn’t compatible with the ATS, it may not be flagged as a match, and the recruiter or hiring manager won’t even read their resume.

How Application Tracking Systems Works

There are numerous different ATS software programs available in the market, but they all work similarly by allowing for filtering, management, and analysis of candidate information for a particular job opening. ATS parse the information in the submitted resumes and place the data in specific fields within the ATS database, such as work experience, education, contact data, etc.

The system then analyses the extracted information for criteria relevant to the position being filled, such as the number of years of experience or particular skills required.

Then, it assigns each resume a score, giving the candidate a ranking compared to other applicants so recruiters and hiring managers can identify candidates who are the best fit for the job.

Criteria used by the applicant tracking system to determine a match includes:

• Appearance of keyword: This can be measured by the number of times the keyword appears.
• Relevance of the keyword within context: Does the keyword or phrase appear with other keywords you would expect.

The higher the resume ranking, the more likely the application will be reviewed by a human reader.

The Role of Keywords in ATS

Success in getting through an applicant tracking system isn’t only about the volume of keywords and phrases. Still, it’s also about the right keywords and, in particular, how unique those keywords are. Many applicant tracking systems put a value on related keywords, not just specific terms.

They see certain keywords and phrases as more valuable than others.

Many systems also allow the hiring manager or recruiter to weigh criteria by applying greater significance to specific terms or qualifications. Hiring managers can also specify unique keywords as either desired or required, which affects rankings. In many cases, the system itself determines the most relevant keywords and phrases, as outlined in the job posting.

ATS software doesn’t merely identify keywords and apply a score based on how many times that keyword appeared; context plays a part too.

The system looks for the relevance of the keyword to your work history and education. Those keywords are analyzed and weighed in the context of the entire resume. Also considered, recency of the desired skill and depth of knowledge the candidate possesses of the topic.

How to use keywords in your Resume for ATS

If you want your resume to be appropriately analyzed by an ATS, it is crucial to include as much relevant information as possible. The unnecessary omission of crucial information can be the difference between having your resume shortlisted for meeting search criteria or not making the cut. For example, if the posting requests a certain level of education, you need to include the degree or certification or include a reference to it if you are pursuing it.

Keywords in a resume can be nouns, adjectives, or short phrases that describe unique skills, abilities, knowledge, education, training, or experience. Try to identify the keywords and key phrases outlined in the targeted job posting and make sure they appear in your resume. Don’t just include the words but also provide the proof in each section of the resume. Don’t forget to find any synonyms of keywords you identify.

These are similar words or phrases which may also be used in your resume and prove to be beneficial. Remember that an actual person will also read your resume if it ranks as a good match, and the system weighs words in context, so keep your content compelling and results-oriented - to make the cut.

How Rezi helps you make you ATS Friendly Resume

Rezi is an AI-powered free ATS resume builder to help you get hired. Rezi, with its features, helps you in the following ways to help to build a great resume:

The Rezi Score: The Rezi Score critiques how well you’ve created your resume across 23 criteria points - translating the result into a pass or fail score rated from 1 – 100, which will help you analyze where your resume stand.

Easy to use

ATS Keyword Targeting: It’s software tells you which skills and keywords applicant tracking systems (ATS) software is searching for. You can then add these missing resume keywords and instantly improve your chances of being selected for an interview.

Real-Time Content Analysis: In addition to resume keywords, it can also identify formatting errors such as missing bullet points, buzz words, useful content, and more.

Rezi Expert Resume Review: We often see job seekers create a resume with mistakes that might cost them the job. Rezi will ensure your resume is free of errors while also providing suggestions you can use to improve your resume content.

Flexible Formatting Tools: Flexible formatting tools let you customize your resume to get the look you want. You can easily adjust features like font size, line height, and zoom level right within the app. The Rezi Score tool will give you instant feedback — providing a dynamic benchmark to guide your resume formatting.

Resume Link Sharing: Rezi allows you to share your resume with a private, updated, and sharable link. Rezi Resume Link Sharing presents your resume in a beautiful and distraction-free view so you can conveniently send your resume to anyone you need.

Resume Version Management: Rezi also allows you to tailor, duplicate, and organize as many job-specific versions of your resume and cover letter as you need. It is now easier than ever to tailor your skills and experience to each company or role you’re interested in.

Cover Letter Builder: In addition to resumes, Rezi also allows you to edit, duplicate, and organize as many job-specific and tailored versions of your cover letters as your job search requires. If you don’t know how to write a cover letter, their team can create a cover letter that explains why you’re the perfect fit.

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