Nostalgia is a beautiful thing. It is fun to sit back and think about old TV shows or a hilarious fashion trend. There is something so enjoyable about sifting through your memories and reminiscing on some of the finer things in life. Remember the good old days when jobs were plentiful?
Neither do we.
According to imaginary economic historians that were fabricated specifically for this sentence, there was once a time when it wasn’t that tough to find a job. Old people like to talk about it, sort of like when they had to walk to work uphill both ways except not as hilarious. Since the economy crashed, jobs have become even scarcer. A single open position may receive as many as one thousand applicants depending on where it is advertised.
College graduates looking for jobs face some tough odds. Not only are there fewer entry level jobs (since employers are looking for workers with more experience) but some seasoned workers are applying for lower paying jobs simply to find employment. If you are a college graduate, you can expect a lot of competition.
Searching Thousands of Applicants
This competition leads to two important questions:
- How does an employer sort through thousands of resumes?
- What can you do to stand out?
Enter Keyword Filled Resumes
It would take human resources personnel weeks to sort through resumes for just one position. Rather than read every resume by hand, companies are turning to database programs. These programs allow HR staff to cut and paste resumes into a searchable database. Then the hiring manager simply enters a few keywords (usually skills and expertise, like the name of computer software you know how to use) into a box and resumes that contain those keywords show up. Then all the manager has to do is review that shorter list of resumes instead and see if any applicants are suitable for an interview.
Keyword resumes are quickly changing the way that businesses find qualified applicants. Rather than a resume filled with stats and figures, the best resumes are going to be the ones that are filled with search terms that employers value.
Should You Write a Keyword Resume?
At this moment, not every company uses these databases to search for resumes, and many smaller businesses still review resumes by hand. Until more companies adopt the database method a standard resume will usually work well. Still, it is a good idea to add keywords to your resume whenever possible to improve your chances of showing up in a keyword database.
Take Away Tips
- Pay attention to the growth of keyword resumes across the country.
- Add items that you know to your resume (such as software you use, coding, and relevant experiences) to improve your chances of showing up in a keyword search.