Six Tips Before You Submit Your Resume To An Online Job Application

In today’s world of recruitment, more and more companies are moving to an online application format where you submit your resume through an online job application portal. Recently I have been speaking with companies in New York where nearly 50% of the clients use an online applicant tracking system. 

Today companies are bringing technology into their recruitment process to help deal with the thousands of applications they are receiving each week. On average every corporate job offer attracts 250 resumes and if you think today Amazon.com has over 7,000 jobs to fill just in the USA. That’s a lot of CV’s and Resume they’re going to receive this week.

Applicant Tracking System

With an applicant tracking system, the idea is that a candidate submits their resume online through the job application portal. The tracking system stores every candidates CV until the recruiter wants to sort through all applications that have been received and will do this via a search for specific keywords.

If your resume contains these keywords, it will be picked up and read by the recruiter. If not, you’re automatically sent a rejection letter. The great thing about an applicant tracking system, you as a candidate can easily find out where your application status, but you now must write your resume to beat an applicant tracking system otherwise it will not matter whether you’re the right candidate for the job, your profile won’t be viewed.

Remember this Before You Hit Apply

With an applicant tracking system, recruiters now have more information than ever before and can quickly sort that information into manageable packages without even looking at your resume.  It’s my biggest pet hate that candidates will apply to each job that they come across whether they’re qualified or not. With an automated online application, I can now see each position you’ve applied to.

If you submit your resume online to 100’s of different jobs, this says that you’re not taking the application process seriously and you should be avoided. With one click, every time you apply to a role, you’re automatically rejected with the recruiter never even seeing your CV.

What Are the Requirements?

You need to focus on applying for positions that you have the correct knowledge, qualifications, and experience. There’s no point in applying to jobs that ask for “5 year’s experience if you have 15”. No one is going to give you a job you could do in your sleep.

Hiring managers know that if they do, it’s more than likely you’ll not be around in six months when something better turns up.  Watch out for specific requirements. If the application asks for a cover letter, then make sure you write a specific cover letter that outlines your experience, knowledge and is tailored to the job description. How many times have I asked for a cover letter to be included and candidates still send me their resumes without a cover letter?

Tailor Your Resume

Make sure you take the time to tailor your resume for a specific role before applying. If a job description asks for someone who is “willing to travel,” or specific experience, make sure it’s written clearly on your resume, ideally in your profile (See How to Write a Resume Here).

Remember, it’s likely that a recruiter is not going to be the first thing that looks for these keywords. With companies that use an applicant tracking system, it’s the program that scan’s your resume looking for these keywords. If your resume does not include the required keywords, you’ll be rejected.

What’s on Your Social Profile?

Finding your social media profiles is a straightforward process given that you have already provided your name, email address, and location. CareerBuilder recently surveyed more than 2,000 hiring managers and revealed that 60% of employers use social networking platforms to research their potential candidates.

What’s on yours? Firstly, you need to make sure what you’ve said on your LinkedIn profile is the same as on your resume. Often candidates have a different LinkedIn profile to what’s on their CV which always makes for an interesting conversation. Secondly, is your social media profile clean?

It’s imperative that you lock down any photographs to friends only and remove any public images that you do not want other people to see. Alcohol, public nudity, and general bad behavior are all things that will put off a recruiter or hiring manager from interviewing you.

Check and Re-Check Your Application

It always amazes me how many people have applied to an online application and have uploaded the wrong file or not uploaded anything at all. Before you press submit, check everything is correct one last time.

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Nick Jones

My name Nick Jones, I am a professional Head-Hunter with over 20 years of experience working all over the world. I specialise in out-of-the-box job search strategies to get your CV directly to the hiring manager, thus skipping any ATS portals or recruiters who think they're important.

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