Job seekers, take note: search engine optimization isn’t just for websites anymore.
Lawyers Weekly Magazine just published a wake-up call in the article Résumé has to first impress computer by Chantal Saxe.
While Saxe wrote the article for lawyers, the following paragraph ought to register with anybody looking for a job:
In tough economic times, companies are also more likely to turn to software programs. … the use of screening programs in the legal sector spiked in 2008 when there were so many applications for every position and companies needed to streamline the process and cut costs.
The challenge the article outlines? Job seekers need to write their résumés to please both screening programs (which “read” and filter résumés) and human readers.
The article misses one tip I consider essential: a person’s LinkedIn profile ought to be as consistent as possible with any résumé that person submits to a potential employer. In fact, people can generate multiple résumés based on their LinkedIn profiles.
That said, the article does offer some great tips:
- Copy the wording the employer uses to describe the skills it seeks.
- Front-load keywords in the résumé (in the first third of the résumé), and repeat them often.
- Submit résumés in easily-scannable file formats like plain text, and avoid formats like PDF.
Check out the whole article here.