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PayScale’s VIP Blog Roundup: Beat the Resume Robots and Get Hired

Topics: Career Advice

Before your resume ever reaches human eyes, it has to make it through the Applicant Tracking System, the software program that scans your CV and decides whether you make it to the people part of the hiring process. Understanding how these Applicant Tracking Systems work might mean the difference between getting that first interview and twiddling your thumbs while your resume languishes in the depths of a database. In this week’s roundup, we get an inside look at these resume robots, plus learn about time management personality types and find out one reason why your last meeting was a bust.

RAM robot

(Photo Credit: CJ Isherwood/Flickr)

Satinder Haer of Jobscan at Career Sherpa: 5 Things You Need to Know About Applicant Tracking Systems

Do You Know What You're Worth?

Why do companies use Applicant Tracking Systems? Satinder Haer explains:

“ATS parse the information from resumes submitted online and store the content their database. When a recruiter or hiring manager has an open role that they are trying to fill, they can use the ATS to run keyword searches and find candidates with the correct skills listed within the body of their resume. Applicant tracking systems essentially do the same work as recruiters, but with higher efficiency, allowing recruiters and hiring managers to focus on the top candidates from their ATS search.”

Nearly every time you submit your resume through an online application form, it will go through an ATS of some kind. Learning exactly how these systems read a resume will help you tailor your application to requirements. (For example, Haer says, if the job opening reads “M.B.A.,” don’t submit your CV with “Masters in Business Administration” instead.)

More tips, here.

Alison Green of Ask a Manager at Intuit’s The Fast Track: 5 Time Management Personality Types and Actions to Improve

Just about everyone wastes time, but not everyone wastes time in the same way. For example, if you’re a procrastinator, Green advises:

“Since the hardest part is often just getting started, try working in small chunks. Tell yourself that you’re going to sit down and work on a project for just a small chunk of time – one hour, say, or even just 15 minutes. You may find that it’s easier to keep going once you start. Also, set yourself interim deadlines. Break projects into pieces, and resolve to get one piece done per day or week.”

Learn more about these personality types, and what they can do to boost their time management skills, at Green’s post.

Anne Bogel at Modern Mrs. Darcy: When You’re Living in the Wrong Movie

Have you ever given your all to a presentation, meeting, or work conversation, only to have it fall flat? Maybe, Anne Bogel suggests, you’re in the wrong movie.

She explains the concept, which she first heard during a podcast interview with Matt Damon:

“[Damon] said that if a seasoned actor’s performance didn’t work, they had one excuse, and it was not knowing what movie they were in. The actor thinks he should take a certain tone, but the scene needs an altogether different one. Maybe the scene demands tragedy and the actor brings sentimentality. Or the scene needs a straight man and the actor brings irony. The acting can be amazing — but if they’re in the wrong movie, it still doesn’t work.”

It comes down to tone, judging the audience … and knowing where you are and what your goal should be. At some point in our careers, we’ve all been in the wrong movie. Getting in the right one is a matter of patience and willingness to change your mindset.

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Jen Hubley Luckwaldt
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