The controversy over whether to include a cover letter with your résumé when you apply for a job has been as hotly debated as whether or not to wear a helmet when you’re motorcycling. According to NHTSA, in 2015, 40% of the motorcyclists killed were not wearing helmets. Statistically similar, 45% of job seekers don’t include a cover letter with their résumé. While I surely won’t compare motorcycle fatalities to sending a cover letter with your résumé, I will tell you that the chances of your résumé being seen by a recruiter or a hiring manager are greatly reduced when you don’t include a cover letter. In fact, 9 out of 10 executives communicated in a recent survey that they found cover letters to be valuable in evaluating job applicants. Continue reading The Résumé Rider: Why Cover Letters Are Important
Imagine you’ve just prepared and served an amazing dinner and one of your guests inquires, “This dinner tastes fantastic! What’s in it that tastes so good?” Would you respond by saying, “Let me tell you about the ingredients: I drove to Stop & Shop and when I turned into the parking lot I went to Section 3 and pulled into a parking space near the shopping carts. I pulled out one shopping cart after another from the nearby cart stand until I found a cart that had wheels that weren’t broken. I then pushed the shopping cart through the parking lot until I got to the main doors then entered the one marked ‘Welcome.’ Rather than go right to the spices aisle, I started in the deli department to shop for the kids’ sandwiches for next week.” Continue reading The Résumé Rider: The Importance of Using Action Keywords in your Résumé
Applicant Tracking Software or ATS is used by companies to streamline their hiring process. It removes all formatting from your résumé and “parses” it to extract readable data, such as your contact information, work history, skills and education. 90% of Fortune 500 companies screen job applicants through an ATS before your résumé is even seen by a live person. While human recruiters look for the basic errors to reject and pare down the number of résumés submitted (such as spelling errors and the lack of relevant job skills), ATS is a sophisticated match game. It stores your résumé in its database then searches for keywords in a particular job opening to see how strong a fit you are. The ‘best fit’ candidates show up at the top of the search results. Continue reading The Résumé Rider: What is ATS?