Ways to Optimize Your Resume for Applicant Tracking System

by Cesar E. Larrainza in Resume 14/09/2016 0 comments

Applicant Tracking System (ATS) refers to the computerized system utilized by organizations to handle the voluminous number of applications/resume they receive. This system itself will read an applicant’s resume, not that of the hiring manager. After reading the resume, ATS will eventually rank, match, and score the applicant’s qualification based on the job description. And guess what – only the applicants with the highest score will be the ones who will proceed to the interview.

Here are Some Tips to Help You Move to The Top of the List.

  1. Use the Preferred Format: Where feasible, avoid using formats or resume templates that are not found in Microsoft Word. Also, make sure that you save your resume in .doc format because some ATS systems cannot read .docx, RTF, JPG, and PDF format.
  2. Use Relevant Keywords: Include all keywords and phrases relevant to the job posting and ensure that they are included in the descriptive achievement-oriented narrative, not in your list of competencies and skills
  3. Customize Your Resume: Avoid using one resume for every position. In fact, your content for each resume should be specific and tailored for each job position. Verbiage for each content should be specific and targeted with relevant phrases and keywords for the position you are applying for, too.
  4. Avoid Using Intricate Formatting: Avoid using headers, lines, borders, footers, shading, or symbols with the exception of bullet points, which are universally accepted.
  5. Answer Each Filter Questions Properly: ATS usually screens applicants based on the given information – such as experience and location – in their applications. Make sure to fill out all the blanks in your resume. This is because ATS usually discard resume with questions left unanswered.
  6. Edit Cautiously: ATS are sensitive to misspelled words and grammatical errors. But in case your resume survives the ATS review, it will later be read by the hiring managers and those blunders will surely not escape their keen eyes.

Create an ATS-Friendly Resume

  • Do not incorporate accented words or use special characters.
  • Do not put punctuation marks such as (), /, or –, within your name.
  • Do not include multiple columns, text boxes, or tables in a single-column format.
  • Use reasonable font size (11 and above) and simple formatted text.
  • Only choose fonts such as Georgia, Arial, Tahoma, Verdana, and Calibri for your text font.
  • Place your name on the top line, without certifications nor degrees after it.
  • Include proper punctuation and capitalizations.
  • Include the spelled-out version of the acronyms and abbreviations.

If you want to see a visible view of an ATS-friendly resume, you may want to search online for resume examples.

In general, it is the structure of the content that matters when dealing with an Automated Tracking System (ATS), so please ensure that your resume is precise, concise, and succinct. You should have a second more visually pleasing resume prepared for the hiring managers once you are called for the initial interview as this is your chance to impress them. Initially, having more than one style of resume requires more work. The benefit of this, if you can do so, is that you will find yourself gainfully employed when your colleagues are not. Remember, at Frontline Medical Staffing, our mission is to get you that eye-watering job as well as the ones that will make you have a reason always to smile. We hope this information proves useful.

Frontline Medical Staffing is always looking for Great Healthcare Providers to place in healthcare facilities all over the US.  Give us a call today at 772-261-8854 or email and let one of our highly staff recruiters assist you.


  1. Optimizing Resume for Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS)

  1. 12 Ways to Optimize your Resume for Applicant Tracking System

  1. The Easy How-To Guide to Formatting Resumes for Applicant Tracking Systems

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