The purpose of a resume is to get you an interview. Using the right resume format will make sure your application isn't tossed out just for being unreadable by a machine. Related: Top 7 Resume Trends For 2015 These days, companies screen candidates and resumes in two ways. The first is through Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS). All resumes (including those directly emailed to companies) are loaded into the computer, parsed and automatically searched for a match with keywords from job announcements (or keywords entered into the system by the recruiter/hiring manager). Only those resumes that have a good keyword match are selected for further review by the hiring manager. If a resume cannot be read by the Applicant Tracking Systems, it is rejected. The second method recruiters and hiring managers use to find candidates is “sourcing” candidates by searching online resumes for possible matches using keywords. Again, if a resume cannot be read by search engines, it will not be selected. Therefore, you should avoid using JPG and PDF files. Many Applicant Tracking Systems can reliably read only text or Word files without tables. Applicant Tracking Systems cannot read JPG files at all. If a resume is in JPG format, it will not even be seen by the hiring manager. In addition, many older Applicant Tracking Systems also cannot read PDF files, and if an applicant submits a PDF that is not readable, it will also be rejected. You may be the most qualified candidate, but that you will not be chosen for an interview unless the Applicant Tracking System can read your resume. If you want a fancy online resume, using PDF as a format is far preferable to JPG, since PDF files can be searched for keywords by search engines. As noted above, you want hiring managers and recruiters to find your resume through online searches. If a search engine cannot read the resume, you will not be found. I strongly recommend using simple Word formats for resumes, with standard fonts, no tables and margins of at least 0.6 inches. Resumes like that will print on all printers, will not be rearranged even by outdated versions of Word, can be read by Applicant Tracking Systems and can be searched online. This post was originally published on an earlier date.
Everyone has heard of New Year's resolutions. You know, those promises we make to ourselves about things we'll do better in the year ahead. Sometimes these resolutions work, while other times we end up with gym memberships we never use! But have you ever heard of a career resolution? It's actually the same thing as a New Year's resolution, only career-focused.
However, with something as important as a career, you don't want to break these resolutions. That's why it's important to keep these goals manageable.
Here are four simple career resolutions that are easy to stick to and achieve.
Be Self-Aware Of Where You Stand In Your CareerBigstock
Being honest and self-aware of where you are in your career is the most important step in making strong career resolutions. If your career is going nowhere and you're unhappy, then it may be time to consider a career change, which will take you down a different path entirely.
But if you're happy and in good standing with your career, it's a lot easier to set goals for the year and build out a long-term career plan.
Find A Way To Grow Your CareerBigstock
Career growth is a very broad spectrum that means something different to everyone. It could be something as simple as improving on a weakness or building on a strength. It could also be learning a new skill or taking on additional responsibilities at work.
On a larger level, it could be seeking a promotion or moving into a leadership role.
Whatever the goal is, make sure it includes growing professionally. The worst thing you can do is stay the same! If you're not growing your career, you're dying—and becoming a lot less valuable to your employer. There are always ways to upskill!
Better Serve Your Professional Network
With current colleagues, former colleagues, and other professional acquaintances, you've probably built a solid professional network through the years. A strong professional network can come in handy if you lose your job or are looking to make a career change. However, you shouldn't just rely on your network when you're in need!
It's important to find ways to offer value to your network. This could include checking in with members of your network from time to time. Exchange messages on LinkedIn to see how they're doing or share relevant content of interest. If you can help someone in your network going through a career challenge, you should!
Maintaining a strong professional network is like an investment. If you want it to pay off, you have to put some time into it and be consistent.
Take Care Of Yourself
Working on your career is hard work! It's okay to be selfish sometimes. Whether you're working to grow your career or looking for a new job, it's important to find balance.
Your family and health always come first, so make sure your career goals don't interfere with that. If you want to set aside time during the week to work on your career that's fine, but don't miss important family events or milestones.
Don't let your career goals get in the way of your health goals. Go to the gym, take a walk, or go for a jog. Balance is key to maintaining healthy career and life goals. Sometimes you just need to adjust that balance as you go.
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This article was originally published at an earlier date.