Recently, one of my resume writing clients vented his frustration with his job search over the last few months. “I feel like I have the skills and qualifications, so why isn’t anyone interested in me?” he disclosed to me. Let me break it down for you.
Initially, hiring managers want someone who can walk in the door and be familiar with their technologies and methodologies right away.
Corporations have applicant tracking systems (ATS) in place to screen out candidates that do not meet this requirement, so this is where it gets complicated. In fact, some of the most perfectly qualified candidates will never be seen by hiring managers. So what can you do?
First, you need to state the exact name of every technology that you’ve ever used on your resume. Call out the full product name and it’s descriptor, if possible. For example, my client said that he had used Remedy for four years when he worked at a call center. Remedy, itself, is a company name and, in fact, no longer in existence. What did the ATS see? Nothing.
I rewrote the accomplishment with the product name as it is known today, which is “BMC IT Service Management.” Many modern ATS’s are smart enough to know current product names and now will call him out as a candidate with 4 years’ experience in service management software. Some of the older systems aren’t as smart, but you have to keep looking forward.
In summary, do the foot work and research every product name you’ve ever used. Visit corporate websites to find out actual names and use it wisely on your resume. Not only in your “skills” section but also once (just once, not more) under each position that you’ve held in the past.