Does a Non-Traditional Resume Limit Your Odds

Non-traditional resumes, while unique and eye-catching, may limit a job applicant’s chances of landing his or her dream job.

Many companies, especially large corporations, use applicant tracking systems (ATS) to automatically parse through submitted resumes in search of keywords that indicate desired skills and experience.

When dealing with an ATS, a text-based resume with clear headers is the best way to go. That way, the software can parse through your resume accurately, picking out all of the juicy details the hiring manager is seeking (i.e. “brand manager,” “Harvard,” “marketing”).

Creative formats such as infographic resumes and video resumes cannot be properly scanned for relevant information. As a result, these formats could cause an applicant to miss out on his or her opportunity to move through the hiring process.

The below infographic, created by resume builder Resunate, illustrates how applicant tracking systems work. If you’re applying for a job via a company’s career website, it’s likely the company uses an ATS — so don’t make the mistake of submitting a resume that isn’t compatible.

We’d recommend that you keep your edge, though. If you’ve been considering a non-traditional resume, it may still be a good idea, especially if you’re applying for a creative position, or already have personal contact with a recruiter or hiring manager who is likely to read your resume.

Would you shy away from creating a non-traditional resume, knowing that your employer of choice may be using an applicant tracking system? Let us know in the comments below.


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