All my clients are super sharp people. Without exception, each one is highly trained, skilled and has a multitude of excellent achievements to their credit. You can be an intelligent person and still get tripped up by keywords. In fact, most of my clients are on the right track when they come to me – meaning that their resume has a good portion of quality content and, what I like to refer to as, power words.
Power words and industry phraseology are important on a resume. A hiring manager must believe you know the industry or role you are submitting your resume for, after all. It is important not to mistake power words for keywords. Keywords, like the hiring and resume industry, are constantly changing. Therefore, each new resume requires complete, fresh, industry and position-specific keyword research.
Keywords need to be included throughout your resume and cover letter. Keywords specific to your target position / industry are populated in the applicant tracking system (ATS). If you do not have the right mix of keywords in your resume, ATS filters you out and your resume is not seen by a human being. Similarly, if your format and content aren’t visually engaging when your resume makes it through ATS, the hiring manager will not add your resume to the stack for interview.
Without keywords, you don’t stand a chance. No chance of your resume being seen. No chance of be invited to interview. No chance at landing the job. Keywords win.
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