May 31, 2018

Importance of keywords in a resume

In today’s rapidly evolving and highly competing job market, a person won’t even look at a resume unless it passes the screening test. Screening software isn’t new; it has been used since quite some time now. So, what employers are looking for is a good-to-perfect fit between the job requirements and the candidate.

For each job opening, hundreds of CVs are sent, and no one has the time to go through all of them. This is why; companies refer to screening software and set specific criteria and key words to search for in the resumes. Thus, the candidates need to tailor their resumes based on their understanding of the job role in order to prove that they’re the ideal fit for the position. They must refer to specific keywords, nouns or phrases that are closely linked to the job to which they wish to apply.

For an accountant position, the candidate must use keywords such as knowledge and/or skill in accounts payable, accounts receivables, reconciliations, tax returns, etc.

Customizing your resume with keywords that are unique to your industry and are found in the job description is one way to ensure that a human might have a look at your background.
Also avoid repeating Keywords as scanning software is set up to find these kinds of repetition(s) and to reject an applicant.

Here are a few guidelines that would help you be sure that your resume will meet with the software’s approval and eventually the hiring manager’s.

1- Use keywords unique to your industry and those found in the job posting.

 Don’t repeat anything verbatim from the posting. Revise until the words are yours. Otherwise, you’ll be rejected by the system.

 Make sure to mention certain essential keywords at the beginning of your resume. The soonest the software detects them, the better chances you have. On the other hand, there are some words that must be absolutely avoided in the resumes, among which the terms of self-praise, like “team player,” “go-getter” and “self-motivated.” Instead of using such terms, describe your accomplishments specifically with words like “improved,” “created” and “increased” and a specific explanation of exactly what you did, including numbers whenever possible.

However, among the words hiring managers would love to see, we mention: Achieved, Improved, Trained/mentored, Managed, Created, Resolved, Volunteered, Influenced, Increased/decreased, Ideas, Negotiated, Won…

It is now the perfect time to review your resume in light of these guidelines adding to it some key words that hiring managers love to hear and omitting those they don’t.


The Business Lobby team.


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