I hear this question a lot. I see a lot of misperceptions about ATS on LinkedIn and online so I thought it would be helpful to explain it more in depth through this article.
ATS stands for Applicant Tracking System. That is essentially the purpose of the software.
Job recruiters use this software to screen out potential candidates.
In today’s competitive market there can be an overwhelming number of applicants and it can be very daunting and time consuming for the recruiter to give their eye to literally 500+ resumes and cover letters.
When a resume is entered into ATS, the recruiter is able to wean out those deemed weak potential candidates and ensure that their time is being spent on more qualified candidates.
The scoring process to identify strong applicants varies from recruiter to recruiter and depends on your industry of work. Ideally you want to be within the top 10-20 % of applicants overall.
Without counting them all, in addition to keywords which is also an important factor, I can say there are over 60 components that are considered for assessment when ATS scores your resume. Many of these areas are multifaceted.
For example, I have displayed some of the key components ATS considers below for you to get a better idea. This is from an actual resume that I was working on.
As you can see in this case the length objective affected the total bullet points objective. What you don’t see is the why. These areas fell short because the word count minimum was not reached.
This is just one of many multifaceted areas that ATS assesses in scoring your resume for recruiter attention.
There are some instances where objectives cannot be met because of the language held within that industry, recruiters know this and adjust their acceptable numbers taking that into consideration.
If you are not getting callbacks for interviews it may very well be because your resume never made it past the AI screen, and no one ever saw it.
If you have an old resume format, ATS may not be able to read it. Thus, eliminating you as a candidate before your hand reaches send.
Do yourself a favor and seek professional Resume Services from someone who uses ATS screening in their process. It will save you from a lot of unnecessary stress.