How to Find Jobs Using Twitter Hashtags

Find jobs using hashtags

How to Find Jobs Using Twitter Hashtags

Twitter recently celebrated its 9th anniversary. The social network is one of many with a growing role in how people find jobs today. Not only do companies often scour social media to learn more about candidates before extending offers, but job seekers can use social media to network, research companies, find out about openings, and more.

The Twitter hashtag is a great tool for people interested in using social media to find jobs. For those who aren’t familiar, a hashtag is a pound sign (#) followed by words, letters, and/or numbers–without spaces. A hashtag serves as a metadata tag, which basically gives it a description and allows it to be searchable. This is why tweets with hashtags are so useful–they can bring people and information with similar interests together (for example, those looking to fill or find jobs). A hashtag can even serve as a chat room.

Hashtags have become so ubiquitous that the word “hashtag” was actually added to the Oxford English Dictionary in 2014. Hashtags for trending or current topics can become popular. For example, history buffs can use the hashtag #richardreburied to follow the reburial of King Richard III–the last English king to die in battle–whose remains were discovered in 2012. (He is being buried in Leicester Cathedral this week.) Hashtags are also often used for broader topics or themes, rather than specific events. This kind of hashtag is the kind that’s most often helpful for job seekers.

Companies with job openings, or hosting job search-related events, use hashtags to increase the chances that job seekers will see their tweets. Others use them to give or receive job search advice, share leads, and more. There are many job- and career-related hashtags job seekers can use to help them find jobs. Here are some of the best:

Find jobs with these hashtags

#careers

#employment

#gethired

#hiring

#jobfairy

#joblisting

#jobopening

#jobposting

#jobs

#tweetmyjobs

Find job search tips with these hashtags

#interviewtips

#jobadvice

#jobsearch

#jobsearchtips

#jobtips

#jobhunt

#jobseekers

Find career and resume tips with these hashtags

#career

#careeradvice

#careerchange

#cv

#resume

#resumes

#resumeadvice

#resumetips

#resumewriting

Browsing through these hashtags, you can find jobs to apply for; hiring managers to connect with; companies to research; career, job search, and resume advice; and more.  If you are merely looking for information, you don’t even need to have a Twitter account. You can locate these hashtags just by using the site’s search function. Some of these hashtags are more active than others–you may find it easier to browse through a hashtag that’s less busy, or you might prefer one with constant activity.

If you want to interact with anyone, you will need a Twitter account of your own. If you don’t have one already, it is worth signing up–it can be a great way to stay up-to-date on news, trends, and prominent players in your industry. Demonstrating industry knowledge and expertise can make you an attractive job candidate, and engaging in dialogue and networking could even bring new opportunities your way.

As you plan out a job search strategy, don’t forget that social media–used properly–is an effective way to find jobs. Don’t limit yourself to the hashtags above; you can also look for hashtags specific to your field, to companies that interest you, or to your geographic area.

See also:

How to Research Potential Employers

Resume Examples: Keywords for Social Media Professionals

How to Find Jobs with LinkedIn

How to Spring Clean Even the Best Resume Format

woman with laptop in park

#thefeelingyouget #springcleaningyourresumeformat

You feel you already have a pretty great resume: solid work history, relevant skills and keywords, and the best resume format to fit your career and highlight it all. You’re ready to take the spring job market by storm (or by gray rainy drizzle).

But before you send it off to face those Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS), the recruitment software used by businesses to receive, filter and file all those submitted resumes—(but by this point your resume format has already been optimized to be ATS-friendly so no worries there!)—here’s 5 quick tips to help declutter those last loose ends:

1. More than one page? Don’t sweat it!

The best resume formats have been required to be one page. Until recently, this has been a golden resume-writing rule but the rise of Applicant Tracking Systems have allowed some liberties in content and space.

A resume parser, at the heart of an ATS, extracts relevant information (contact information, resume keywords, skills) from the submitted resume while unable to upload the majority of a resume’s format (graphics, tables and page breaks).

So job-seekers who are scratching their heads while messing with font and footer sizes, waste no more time! Include the content you need (choosing quality over quantity, of course) because a 1-3 page resume is now acceptable, thanks to those ATS!

2. Consider a resume objective/career summary

Including a  resume objective or career summary at the top of your resume format is a great way to immediately make yourself distinctive to hiring managers:

Resume objectives give beginner job-seekers (such as college graduates) a chance to explain their career aims and potential to employers as they lack the experience and evidence on their resume.

Career summaries allow seasoned employees to establish a brand for themselves and express what makes their career and themselves distinctive. (e.g., your customer service experience is only within small, local companies instead of larger corporations).

They are also prime opportunities to include more of those crucial resume keywords in your resume to help your resume rank higher in an ATS. The quickest, easiest way to determine these resume keywords is to run your resume through a keyword tracker tool such as Jobscan, which can also determine if those keywords have been formatted correctly.

3. Quantify your achievements

Whenever possible, always use a number to back up your resume statements, statements that display duties of your past occupations as achievements (‘Accrued solid customer service skills as a manager by consistent ability to be a solid team player with strong multitasking skills’).

Doing so will help hiring manager see exactly how much you increased or improved a task or company. Which is more powerful: ‘Increased profits by a lot’ or ‘Increased profits by 30%’.

4. Leave those gaps in your work history

Life happens, good or bad: maternity leave, study/volunteer abroad, injury/illness, deaths. Even the most professional resume formats have a few holes in their work history because life happens.

According to Glassdoor, unless the gap is more than 2 years, it’s nothing to worry about trying to hide in your resume. Depending on the reason, many hiring managers will understand but it is suggested not to explain your reasoning for the absence in the resume itself but instead, in the in-person interview.

If a resume provides quality, relevant content in other categories hiring managers won’t mind what is missing.

5. Word Document is (way) better than PDF

As mentioned in the first point, Applicant Tracking Systems will erase most resume formats because of its resume parser. So when submitting a resume online, it is crucial to understand which document will upload best and keep the integrity of your resume format:

    • BEST:
      • Word Document (“.doc”, “.docx”): a fantastic universal file type for submitting resumes into an ATS.
      • Plain Text (“.txt”): this file type is very compatible but a resume won’t look very pretty. Unless you have included graphics and tables (not advisable), this file is best for resumes consisting purely of text.
      • Copy/Paste content directly into job posting (double check before submitting!)
    • WORST:
      • Adobe PDF (“.pdf”): resume parsers will have a hard time getting through this encrypted document and sometimes data extracted will not transfer smoothly, making it unrecognizable to the ATS.
      • Rich Text File (“.rtf”): Not compatible enough with many new systems (let alone cutting edge applicant tracking systems).
      • JPEG

Oscar Winner Eddie Redmayne’s Terrible Solution for Resumes With No Work Experience

Definitely Do Not Use These Resume Examples!

Why Hybrid Resumes are 2015’s Favorite Resume Format

Is Your Resume Unintentionally Unprofessional?

shutterstock_93339844

Is your resume unintentionally unprofessional?

Getting so caught up in the hurricane of the job hunt can leave you forgetting to tie up those loose, unintentionally unprofessional details in your resume. Unfortunately, hiring managers can spot these small blunders from miles away. They hold all the potential to crush any and all chances for an interview but being aware of what you may be overlooking will avoid any miscommunication and missed opportunities.

1. “Funny” or “cute” or shared email accounts
If you’re of the millennial generation (born between 1980 and 2000), the internet and email exploded when you were still considered a child so it only makes sense your first email was, well, childish.

Failure to upgrade this trusty old email, whether by stubbornness or negligence, is a sloppy excuse to throw away your chances for an interview. According to Forbes, 31% of resumes are automatically dismissed for having an inappropriate email.

For business emails: keep it simple and use a minimal amount of numbers and special characters.

For shared email accounts: create your own. Many responses often end up in junk mail folder and putting it in danger if being deleted by other users is, well, self-explanatory.

2. Failure to proofread
Don’t always rely on spellcheck! Contextualization isn’t always taken into account so job-seekers may not realize, looking at their resume on a screen, a correctly-spelled word may not be the correct word after all.

Science concludes a “glossing-over” happens when something is read off a screen than on a physical piece of paper. Reading your resume aloud and/or printing it out on a hard copy is a quick and crucial step to try. Nothing says unprofessional like a misspelling.

3. Failure to customize your resume
While working as an office assistant, resumes would occasionally land on my desk before being handed to the appropriate person. One time, I received three resumes from the same candidate applying to three different jobs in the company. Each resume was exactly the same.

Failure to customize a resume to each job (even in the same company) is downright lazy. It’s all the difference between a Happy Meal and French fine dining. Which do you think put more effort into their product?

Thankfully, tailoring a resume to a particular job is not as stressful as a French kitchen, especially so with the help of online resume tools like Jobscan, which is a great building block to help determine and format correctly those crucial resume keywords.

Resume keywords are skills/qualifications in your resume that match the skills/qualifications in the original job description. They help resumes pass those pesky Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS), the recruitment software used by 90% of businesses. ATS judge how qualified a resume is by how many resume keywords it contains.

Customizing your resume and including the correct resume keywords go hand-in-hand: the chances of an untailored resumes appeasing Applicant Tracking Systems and hiring managers alike are slim.

4. Everything but the kitchen sink
Hanging off the end of the last point: only include what is relevant to the job.

On average, hiring managers only spend six seconds to view a resume so it is a job-seeker’s job (no pun intended) to make sure they present as much relevant information as possible.

A good tip is to start with those resume keywords to make sure no matter what other skills and qualifications you provide, you will still pass those Applicant Tracking Systems.

5. Lazy words like “etc.”  
When asked to explain, display and prove your qualifications to potential employers, “etc.” is not a good choice of words. Hiring managers can’t refuse to take time to discern what this means and more often than not will view it as deceptive. If you feel your experience and skills may not be impressive enough, a good trick to sounding confident and qualified is to phrase all your duties as accomplishments.

Duties: customer service skills, ability to be a team player, strong multitasking skills

Accomplishments: Accrued solid customer service skills as a manager by consistent ability to be a solid team player with strong multitasking skills.

On a related, lighter note, spelling out acronyms help Applicant Tracking Systems and hiring managers understand what company/school/program it stands for (WWU: Western Washington University; BBC: British Broadcasting Corporation). On a resume, nothing says professional like clarity.

Job Search Tips for 2015 

Definitely Do Not Use These Resume Examples!

Top Resume Formats in 2014

2015 U.S. Job Search by the Numbers

Hey there, Jobscan users!

In the midst of your job search, it’s easy to feel like you are getting lost with a bad case of tunnel vision while crafting your resume. It is then that you deserve to take a break, inhale deeply, and look around at the bigger picture of the modern job market and job search. While you may or may not be living in the U.S., here’s a fun breakdown of the 2015 U.S. job search: a few good numbers to inform, calm, and hopefully, be helpful.

Infographic2 Job_Search_

U.S. job search

 

See also:

Infographic: The U.S. Job Market

5 Signs Your Resume is Not Ready for the 2015 Job Search

What You Can Learn About Career Research from March Madness

march madness can help your career research

What You Can Learn About Career Research from March Madness

The first round of March Madness is here, which means you should have your tournament bracket filled out by now. Did you go with undefeated Kentucky winning it all? Or did you choose a good team who wants to take it to the next level to prove they are elite, like Gonzaga? Maybe you’re a risk-taker who chose a Cinderella. 12 seeds have made some strong tournament showings–who knows, it could be the year of the fearsome Wofford Terriers. (Or not.) The thing is, each of these different types of teams is analogous to a different type of employer. When you are doing career research, you might discover that you are drawn to a certain type of employer–you may dream of working for a start-up, or maybe you want the predictability of a large, established company. There are pros and cons for each type, and your preferences may change throughout your career.

Number 1 seeds

The number 1 seeds–this year, Kentucky, Wisconsin, Villanova, and Duke–are the big-name schools everyone else is gunning for. These programs have track records of success and big budgets, and they attract top talent. They even attract players who could be starters elsewhere who choose instead to be a reserve player at one of the top programs in the country. Those players do so because they value the opportunity to learn from the best–both their teammates and the coaching staff. Coach Mike Krzyzewski of Duke in particular is known for establishing life-long relationships with players. From championship opportunities to the best equipment and facilities to the resume boost, there are countless reasons why the top programs are able to field teams with so much depth.

These kinds of employers are established, household names. They tend to offer more stability and fewer surprises (a pro for some people; a con for others). Because of their size and clout, they can offer their employees great benefits–plus the added benefit of having that company on their resume. “Played college basketball” carries some weight, for example, but “played college basketball at Duke” makes people sit up and take notice. This is the level of success that other companies strive for, and while there are relatively few C-suite roles (or, to put it in basketball terms: starting) at such companies, there is plenty of room for many people to have interesting and fulfilling careers at these organizations. You can be a key player at a this type of company without the constant pressure of being the star. Or, if stardom is what you’re after, a stint at a number 1 seed employer could make you a household name.

Competition for jobs at this type of company can be fierce–keep that in mind when doing career research or applying for an opening. Companies and teams at this level both have to turn away talent.

Mid-majors

These are the teams who may be familiar to devoted college basketball fans, but not as widely recognized as the top seeds–think Northern Iowa, Wichita State (Jobscan’s Seattle roots mean I must point out this is the alma mater of former Sonic Xavier McDaniel), or BYU. Or, of course, Gonzaga. Gonzaga made a name for themselves in 1999 with an Elite Eight appearance, but have yet to make it that far in the tournament again. The Bulldogs, and teams like them, are the big fish of the smaller conferences. They don’t face the same level of competition. They can’t provide their players with all of the opportunities and resources players on elite teams get, but they often offer more flexibility and adaptability. Teams like these are less subject to people coming in, making a splash, and quickly moving on.

Companies at this level could be at the top of their industry–but instead of the artist, they might be the contractor who built the art museum. People and positions at this company are likely to be more accessible–and there are numerous benefits to employers of this size. You might get an automated system if you need human resources at a top seed; you might get laughed at if you ask about human resources at a start-up; but if you need human resources at an employer in the mid-major category, chances are you’ll actually get a human.

Cinderellas

These are the teams who come out of nowhere to go on improbable runs, capturing the attention of the country while they’re at it. (Florida Gulf Coast, anyone?) Talent and timing are huge factors in determining which teams, if any, will play the role of Cinderella. Luck and health play into it, too. Maybe Eastern Washington or Coastal Carolina will exceed expectations in dramatic fashion–maybe not. Teams seeded 12th have a history of good performances; will one of this year’s 12 seeds keep that tradition alive?

Choosing the wrong team as your Cinderella can screw up your bracket–but choosing the right one can propel you to success. The obvious employer corollary here: start-ups. Start-ups are a high-risk, high-reward type of employer. As an employee at a start-up, there are certain concessions you make in exchange for a big upside and other perks. One of the risks of a start-up career is the very real possibility of finding yourself suddenly without a job. Cinderella teams, similarly, tend to be suddenly and unceremoniously bounced out of the tournament. But if you luck into being on the right team at the right time, you could be part of history.

As you conduct your career research, think about which traits you value most in an employer. Stability? Opportunity? Growth? Once you know what your priorities are, your job search can be more focused.

See also:

3 Job Search Tips from Duke Coach Mike Krzyzewski

Top Resume Skills for 2015

Job Search Tips for 2015

Resume Examples: Keywords for the Finance Industry

Finance Resume Keywords

Resume Examples: Keywords for the Finance Industry

By reading through resume examples, job seekers can get an accurate sense of how they compare with others in the field. Do they have sought-after credentials? Do they know the latest tools? Do they have enough accomplishments to climb another step up the ladder? While it’s common to search through resume examples to answer these questions and more, job seekers should not forget that targeted resumes are the name of the game. Resume keywords are a big factor in standing out from a sea of applicants. For help tailoring your resume, it’s best to turn not to resume examples, but to job listings–they are the ultimate source of resume keywords.

The word cloud above was generated using the text from a dozen finance industry job postings. The larger the word, the more often it appeared.

Finance industry jobs are highly sought after by many in large part because of the prestige and the paychecks. If you’re looking for a job in finance, you’ll be facing a lot of competition. Having the right resume keywords is one way to differentiate yourself.

Finance resume keywords

If you want a job in finance, include these resume keywords wherever applicable:

  • Analysis
  • Asset
  • CFA
  • Client
  • Compliance
  • Equity
  • Excel
  • Financial
  • Insurance
  • Investment
  • Licenses
  • Management
  • Models
  • Performance
  • Portfolio
  • Recommendations
  • Reports
  • Research
  • Review
  • Valuation

Resume skills

As you can see from this list, finance jobs require talent and experience with data and analysis. Many finance jobs also require candidates to pass specific exams and possess certain credentials. In order to sit for some of these exams, you must have an industry sponsor. If you are interested in working in the finance industry, you’ll have to thoroughly research what’s considered necessary for the roles that interest you.

Math and Microsoft Excel skills are also, obviously, at the top of the priorities list. And don’t forget the people skills necessary to work with clients and make persuasive presentations. (While you’re studying for your exams, you might also want to join Toastmasters.)

Jobscan

Using resume keywords properly requires finesse. Stuffing your resume text full of words you think might be applicable won’t work, and neither will copying and pasting sections from the job listing itself. The key is to tailor your resume for each individual job listing. This isn’t a time-consuming process once you’re familiar with resume keywords, and provided you’re working from something like a career management document. Creating a new resume from scratch each time isn’t necessary, and isn’t even advisable.

To quickly find out whether your resume is targeted well, try Jobscan. All you have to do is paste in the text of your resume and the job description, and Jobscan will provide instant feedback about things you’ve done well and things you can do better. Resume examples can be a great source of inspiration, but they are no match for individualized feedback.

See also:

How to Choose Resume Keywords

8 Things You Need to Know About Resume Keywords

Top Resume Skills for 2015

Formatting Resume Keywords for Veterans

veteransWhen applying for a civilian job, veterans face a few extra hurdles because they have to translate their career in the military into an attractive resume for a career in the civilian world (VA Careers).

This means dissecting their military skills and experiences for skills and experiences that will be marketable, transferrable, and applicable in a civilian job.

But even after veterans have “demilitarized their resumes” (identified those marketable, transferrable, and applicable skills) and selected a good number of compatible civilian occupations (using a Military Occupational Crosswalk (MOC)), how do they craft a resume that fits both their range of experience and genuine interest for a position?

Even for non-veterans, the task is daunting.

A new recruitment software called an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) is being used by 90% of businesses to help shift through the bulk of submitted resumes, cutting out as many as 75% of submissions before any are actually viewed by a hiring manager.

Many job-seekers (civilians and veterans alike) are unaware of this new technology and a large number of qualified resumes are being rejected because applicant tracking systems determine how compatible a resume is based on resume keywords (skills/qualifications in a resume that match the skills/qualifications in the original job description).

Resume keywords are the bread and butter of a veteran’s resume: it is these resume keywords that will replace any military lingo and acronyms so civilian employers can understand which skills and qualifications they have.

The top resume keywords recruiters look for are (VA Careers):

• Leadership skills
• Independent thinking
• Problem solving
• Applied Teamwork skills
• Professional dedication

Veterans can provide goldmines of these skills on their resumes but if they do not format them correctly on their resume, applicant tracking systems will not recognize them and tag their resume as qualified. To an ATS, there is a difference between ‘monitor’ and ‘monitoring’; ‘Microsoft Excel’ and ‘Excel’; ‘Tech’ and ‘Technician’.

The online resume tool, Jobscan is designed to help resume-writers select and format their resume keywords correctly:

• It allows a resume to be compared directly to the desired job posting
• Receive a match rating (on a percentage scale)
• Receive analysis on what is and isn’t working
Not only is Jobscan is a great building block for veterans just starting to craft their resume, it is also a useful tool to test-drive that finished resume: Jobscan allows users to rescan their resume after changes, even giving them the option to manually add in any skills the job-seekers believes may be relevant.

Job hunting can be hard but doesn’t have to be that hard and interview chances can be slim but they don’t have to be that slim.

3 Steps to Create a Target Resume for Veterans

Matching Your Resume to the Job Description in 3 Time-Saving Steps!

Job Search Tips for 2015

 

 

7 Steps for Choosing and Using Job References

Job references

7 Steps for Choosing and Using Job References

There are a lot of things to consider when hunting for a job: your resume, cover letter, LinkedIn profile, researching employers, potential interview questions, and more. Choosing the best job references, and following good etiquette when using them, isn’t always a priority for job seekers–but it should be. A reference can be the difference between a job offer and a rejection. With finding the right cultural fit such a priority for employers, it’s imperative for job seekers to have people who can speak to their skills, accomplishments, and attitude.

If you choose the right references, and respect their time and effort, your glowing reviews will be a lock.

Verifying your resume

Your resume should cover your work history, career highlights and accomplishments, educational achievements, skill set, and extras such as volunteer work or professional associations. One thing an employer is looking for when checking your references is verification of the information on your resume, including employment dates, job titles, graduation dates, and more.

And while we’re on the topic of verification, it’s imperative that you verify the contact information for your references in advance. Lacking current contact information signals to an employer that you are disorganized, and haven’t kept in touch with that person.

Keep it professional

Don’t use your mom as a reference–even if she’s also your boss at the family business. If you do happen to work for a family business, use a coworker who isn’t related to you to as a reference for that role.

Choosing the right references can indicate to employers that you have good judgment–and choosing the wrong references can indicate the opposite. If you held an entry-level help desk job at a large company, for example, the CIO is not going to be your best choice for a reference. You need someone familiar with specifics about your performance and your personal attributes. But that familiarity must be balanced with objectivity; your best work buddy is not a good choice for a reference.

Get permission in advance

You must get permission from each person ahead of time. The last thing you want is for a potential employer to call someone and find them caught off guard, unprepared to talk about you, or unwilling to serve as a reference. If your references reflect poorly on you, you will likely cost yourself a job offer.

Meet with job references

If possible, meet with your job references in person

Ideally, meet in person when asking someone to serve as a reference. Meeting over coffee or lunch is the perfect opportunity to go over your job search goals. It’s also a good idea to take along a copy of your resume so that you can go over your strengths and accomplishments. This is especially useful for references from jobs you worked at a few years ago (or more). Bring them up to speed on what you did since you last worked together, and what you’re looking for now.

If someone declines to be a reference, remember that it might not be personal. Many companies have policies requiring HR to handle all references. There are a number of reasons why anyone might be unable to serve as a reference.

Respect their time

The unfortunate truth is that a job search can last for many months. Leaning on the same people time and time again can be asking too much, regardless of the relationship. Serving as a reference requires not only time and energy, but availability on short notice.  And remember–your job references may be acting as references for other people as well.

Rotating references is recommended. It keeps you from calling in the same favor from the same people too many times. If you think you’d have trouble securing enough references to be able to rotate them, remember you aren’t limited to former bosses only. Colleagues you worked closely with, repeat clients, a supervisor from your volunteer work, and professors–if you’re a recent graduate–are all possibilities.

If you have six to eight people to choose from, you can always choose the best ones for each job. You might pick people from certain industries, or focus on those who can talk about the magic you work in Excel rather than those who are familiar with your great presentation skills. Targeting your resume and cover letter may land you the interview; targeting your references may land you the job.

Provide updates

Time is of the essence during the hiring process. Always let your references know when they might be needed. They may have an upcoming vacation or deadline that overlaps with when an employer would contact them. Let them know when you have an interview scheduled; you should be prepared to provide references at the interview.

Just checking the availability of your references isn’t enough. Give them information about the role and company, the person or people who may be contacting them, and anything else relevant to the job. The better informed your references are, the more prepared they will be when contacted.

Leave references off your resume

The “references available upon request” line is obsolete–and makes your resume appear dated. Many people, particularly young people, include it because they think it makes them seem professional. The fact is that it’s expected that all candidates will have references. Having them doesn’t make you special–not having them means you have a problem to solve.

Most employers today check job references after the interview stage. It can be a time-consuming process, and employers for the most part don’t see the point in devoting that time until they’re interested in hiring a particular candidate. Remember, resumes are reviewed so quickly that some information always gets missed, making it unwise to have clutter on your resume. A line about references is clutter, and because it is typically occupies the prime real estate at the end of the resume, where the eye naturally falls, you risk employers seeing that line and missing something crucial.

Prepare a separate references sheet rather than mentioning references on your resume. This should include each reference’s name, title and company, contact information, and a brief explanation of your relationship to them. Even better, add the specific roles and skills each reference is familiar with. This gives you another chance to call out information you want to highlight.

Be gracious

You already know it’s important to be courteous and follow up after each job interview. Similarly, you should thank your job references each time they are called upon. Send a note letting them know you appreciate their time and effort, and update them on the outcome. If you send a card in the mail, consider including a gift card to a local coffee shop. And if you land the job, maybe dinner’s on you.

See also:

Job Search Tips for 2015

Resume Format: Including Volunteer Work

3 Job Search Tips from Duke Coach Mike Krzyzewski

The Best Time to Write Your Resume: Before Your Job Search

Why Your Resume Won’t Survive the New 2015 Applicant Tracking Systems Without Jobscan

Stock Image:

Trivia: What do the new 2015 Applicant Tracking Systems and St. Patrick’s Day NOT have in common?

The Usual Suspects:

• Jobscan: an online resume tool that helps job-seekers find and format those crucial resume keywords in the original job description to optimize a resume for online submission (via job hubs like Monster and LinkedIn).

• Resume keywords: Skills and qualifications in the original job description a resume must have to attract the attention of Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS), the puppeteers behind online job sites aiding recruiters in the hiring process.

• Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS): The recruitment software used by 90% of businesses to filter and file the onslaught of submitted resumes. At the heart of this software is a resume parser that extracts resume keywords straight from the resumes themselves and stores them in the ATS database.

• Resume parser: Okay, so in the past, resume parsers could consume long bulleted lists of resume keywords the same way we all do with beer on St. Patrick’s Day. It essentially counted keywords—the more keywords it captured, the more qualified that resume was dubbed.

The New and Improved

A handful of the new Applicant Tracking Systems of 2015 are a little more sober smarter than that. They don’t just count keywords but are able to analyze them contextually.

The new ATS of 2015 will be able to understand the “difference between somebody who took class in [for example] Java eight years ago and somebody who’s been programming in Java every day for last three years”, says Matt Sigelman, CEO of Burning Glass, which designs resume-parsing software (The Ladders).

To beat a 2015 ATS, a resume keyword should be surrounded by relevant content—that means demonstrating how you used that particular skill/experience to prove your expertise and familiarity with it. This can be achieved by turning your resume’s laundry list of duties into statements of accomplishments.

Exhibit A: (Excerpt from job description)
Our Coffee House is hiring! We are looking for individuals with customer service experience and who have strong multitasking skills and is a solid team player.

Exhibit B: (Boring list of duties on resume)
• Customer service experience
• Multitasking
• Team player

Exhibit C: (Duties stated as accomplishments on resume)
Applied strong multitasking skills and the ability to work in a team to accrue solid customer service experience as manager.

Not too shabby.

But here’s the kicker: while an ATS may be able to analyze a resume keyword contextually (be able to understand your customer service experience is linked to a manager position), that resume keyword must still be formatted to echo the original format in the job description to even be recognized by the ATS.

If the job description formats those resume keywords as ‘customer service experience’, ‘multitasking skills’, ‘team player’ then your resume keywords better mention those keywords as ‘customer service experience’, ‘multitasking skills’, ‘team player’.

Notice in Exhibit C, ‘team player’ has been changed to ‘work in a team’ to fit in a statement. Imagine every resume keyword as flags on a golf course: you’ll never know where the holes are without them.

Exhibit D:
Accrued solid customer service skills as a manager by consistent ability to be a solid team player with strong multitasking skills.

This resume writing process may take a few tries to make sure you have each resume keyword formatted correctly but running your resume through Jobscan will be able to instantly tell you if you have not only included every important keyword but formatted them correctly.

Jobscan even allows you to manually add any keyword you feel is relevant to the position and re-scan it again.

A grossly enormous amount of job-seekers are unaware of Applicant Tracking Systems to begin with and Jobscan wants to not only give job-seekers a boost into the modern job market but keep them one step ahead of the game.

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Three Job Search Tips from Duke Coach Mike Krzyzewski

Job Search Tips from Coach K

Three Job Search Tips from Duke Coach Mike Krzyzewski

Looking for job search tips? You can find inspiration anywhere, but there might be no better source than Duke University head basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski (pronounced she-SHEF-ski, if you didn’t know). One of the most successful college basketball coaches of all time, he has helmed one of college basketball’s most storied programs since 1980. In January, he notched his 1,000th career victory, making him the first NCAA Division I men’s coach to reach that milestone (it must be said that the inimitable Pat Summit–longtime women’s basketball head coach at Tennessee and winner of eight NCAA championships–reached it first).

Coach K has led Duke to four NCAA championships and 13 ACC tournament championships, in addition to bringing USA basketball back from the dead and spurring the team to Olympic gold medals in 2008 and 2012.

Here are three job search tips you can take from Coach K’s career:

Focus

As a West Point graduate, Coach K knows a thing or two about focus. Consistency has been one of the hallmarks of his career, with Coach K teaching his players the importance of focus: no tardiness, no bad practices. By focusing on their mission, Duke players are able to reach amazing levels of success.

Coach K’s emphasis on focus also comes through in his training of his team to put each game behind them. Win or loss, the team’s focus is always on the next game. The idea is to keep big wins from creating big egos, and to keep big losses from casting big doubts.

Every job search will have highs and lows. The key takeaway is to focus on the next application, the next networking event, the next interview. Devoting 100 percent to your next effort will do far more for your success than dwelling on the past. “Next play” is one of Krzyzewski’s favorite and most famous maxims. Wherever you are in your job search, focus on your next play.

Flexibility

Some teams and programs become known for certain traits, and find players who can execute on that style of play. Defenders with smarts, size, and speed, for example, are key to Seahawks coach Pete Carroll’s crushing defense.

But Coach K is different. Throughout his years at Duke, he has focused on recruiting the nation’s top talent, and adapting his team’s style of play to suit their strengths. Sometimes he has strong inside players. Other years, he has a team capable of building a lead in a hurry because of their ability to drain threes. (Though I maintain there is no excuse, ever, for weak free-throw shooting.)

How willing are you to show flexibility in your job search? Do you keep using the same method over and over–or worse, the same resume over and over? Being flexible and adapting to each individual situation–in the case of a job search, to each individual job listing–is a key to success. If Coach K had used the same coaching style all the time, every year, he would have lost a lot more games. But by staying honest about what is working and what isn’t, he kept his focus on the big picture and kept his team from falling into ruts. If you’re not getting the number of responses, interviews, or offers you want, you must be willing to be flexible.

Improvement

The U.S. national basketball program was a mess when Coach K took over. Taking on that role was a challenge not just because of the task he faced, but because it required him to go outside of his comfort zone. When asked about this role, Krzyzewski said, “If you stop learning, you are not going to be effective.”

Rejection isn’t anyone’s comfort zone. But a job search requires you to face rejection time and again. You will eventually achieve success–that is, a job offer–but few people get the first job they apply for. Fewer still stay at the same job for their entire career. Most of us, at various points, will be job seekers. The key to job search success is to strive for improvement. As Coach K points out, you stop improving when you stop learning.

Take this story, from college basketball analyst Seth Davis: “I was sitting a few rows behind the the home team’s bench when Krzyzewski yanked Christian Laettner from the game. Laettner had made a mistake and Krzyzewski was really pissed. Laettner took a seat a few feet in front of me, and I heard every word, most of them profane, as Krzyzewski screamed in Laettner’s grill….When Krzyzewski returned to his seat, Laettner dropped his head. Just then, Krzyzewski shouted toward his freshman, ‘Christian! Keep your head up! Learn from your mistakes.’”

There are two ways that improvement plays into a job search. One is to improve yourself, by broadening or deepening your skill set: Learning a desired skill can quickly turn you into a desirable candidate. The other is through analysis. Look at the jobs you’ve applied for, the amount of interviews you’ve gotten, and how those interviews have gone. What can you change that would improve your response rate? What interview questions have you stumbled on? Taking honest stock of your application process to figure out what’s hindering you will put you much closer to success.

Putting focus, flexibility, and improvement into action in your job search will help you reach your goals. There is no better example of that than Coach Krzyzewski.

See also:

The Best Time to Write Your Resume: Before Your Job Search

Three Job Search Tips from Seahawks Coach Pete Carroll

Top Resume Skills for 2015