With every aspect of life becoming digitalized, it is no surprise that reviewing candidates for a job manually is a thing of the past. And since large companies receive thousands of resumes per job vacancy, recruiters now turn to applicant tracking systems (ATS) to ease the process. Hence, finding a good ATS resume template should be the first step for every job seeker.
ATS is software that scans all applicants’ resumes and matches them with specific keywords from the job description. Once the screening process is done, the system selects the best-fitting candidates, and delivers their CVs to the recruiter for further assessment.
This new way of reviewing resumes changed the way job seekers were writing them.
Given that the ATS is the first filter through which a CV goes, it is vital that its formatting complies with the software’s checkmarks. However, job seekers can use an ATS resume template to get ahead of the system. But without proper formatting, a resume might not even reach a recruiter.
Why is an ATS Resume Important?
Optimization is crucial because when a resume gets in an ATS, the system parses out the text and makes it searchable for the recruiter or puts it into a digital candidate profile. Hence, even if the resume has a sleek design and proper keywords, without optimizing it for an ATS, the chances of getting that first interview are scarce.
Therefore, besides being good at what they do, it’s become necessary for job seekers to write a resume that can beat an ATS.
How to Write an ATS-Friendly Resume?
Today’s job market landscape turned resume writing into an art form.
Aside from putting in relevant experiences and skills for the job, candidates now have to pay attention to the structure of their resumes.
88% of headhunters report that highly qualified candidates get rejected by an ATS for not matching the job description’s precise criteria. This shows that an applicant must submit an ATS-friendly resume to stand out from the crowd and continue in the hiring process.
Even though it might seem impossible, some tips help create a friendly resume.
- Limit the resume to one or two pages. The average length of a resume is 3.2 pages. However, data shows a 2.9 times greater chance of getting picked for a managerial role and 1.4 times for an entry-level position with a two-page resume.
- Make use of appropriate keywords. An ATS searches for the specific keywords provided by the employer. Read the job description to figure out the prevailing keywords and use them in the resume.
- Use specific details that are important to the job vacancy. Be specific when listing work experiences and ensure they apply to the position. Adding unnecessary information is a waste of the recruiter’s time and minimizes the chances of getting past an ATS.
- Correct inconsistencies, grammar, and spelling mistakes. Inconsistencies in grammar and spelling make it harder for the system to properly search for and recognize keywords. Plus, a well-written resume looks more professional.
- Align everything to the left side of the resume. Like people, this is how an ATS reads: from left to right.
- Avoid using tables and columns, as well as headers and footers. Even though they improve readability for people, most ATSs don’t know how to read them. That information will be invisible to the systems.
- Save the resume in the correct file format. Make sure to check the preferred file format in the job description. While PDFs are usually the best format because they preserve the data, some ATSs don’t accept them.
- Take advantage of ATS resume templates. Some websites offer a preapproved ATS resume template that is completely customizable and follows the guidelines of a friendly resume.
Top 5 Websites to Find ATS Resume Templates
Creating an ATS resume can prove to be tricky and exhausting. It takes careful consideration of how to format it, what information to use and how to present it adequately.
Luckily, plenty of websites offer ATS resume templates, and some of them are even geared toward specific careers.
Zety offers one of the best online ATS-friendly resume builders and free professional advice since 2016. All that a candidate has to do is fill out the details in the editor, and it produces a state-of-the-art resume.
The best thing about it is that it provides thorough explanations of the process. It gives tips and suggestions on utilizing an ATS resume template to build a strong resume. It also offers prompts on making the content align with an applicant’s unique needs.
Resumeworded provides templates compatible with ATS and divides them into three categories. Therefore, a candidate can easily choose which one is the most relatable for them.
- Resume Templates for Experienced Hires. These resumes list the work experience first because that is what recruiters will focus on with experienced candidates.
- Resume Templates for Recent Graduates. These templates prioritize education for applicants who just graduated since it is their strongest asset.
- Resume Templates for Students. Students looking to gain experience before venturing into the working world can use an ATS resume template that highlights their education, projects, and extracurricular activities.
Jobscan offers resumes that help people get past an ATS. They design their templates by researching the common ways that applicant tracking systems rank resumes, such as keyword searches, keyword frequency, and content parsing.
The company developed an algorithm that compares the resume with the target job description. Therefore, it provides suggestions based on the job details and the hiring company’s ATS. The most significant benefit is that the candidate doesn’t need to figure out how many keywords to use on their own – Jobscan templates provide this information.
Novoresume creates its templates in collaboration with many successful recruiters. Therefore, their resumes comply with popular ATSs increasing the chances of passing the systems processes.
Each template can be modified to match the industry, position, and work experience. For students, some resumes emphasize their skills. When building a resume, the editor provides live feedback in the form of alerts and suggestions to help improve the quality of the content.
Rezi started offering resume templates in 2015. Now, it is the leading AI resume software that can automatically write the perfect resume based on a job title.
The company offers two types of template formats fully analyzable by ATS software. In addition, it identifies ATS keyword targeting to improve the chances of getting an interview. It provides real-time analysis regarding common content errors and gives the resume a score across 23 criteria points.
Creating an ATS-friendly resume increases a candidate’s chances of getting hired and stacks the odds in their favor. And the easiest way to move forward is to use a preapproved ATS resume template like the ones above.