In the digital age, as companies sift through hundreds, if not thousands, of resumes for a single job posting, the struggle to identify the best candidates is real. A resume is a ticket to an interview, and getting it right can be the difference between landing the ideal employee and missing out. So, what should companies really be looking for in a resume?
- Start Scanning – If you’ve got hundreds of applicants for a job, you simply won’t have time to read through all of them and the thought of it can be intimidating. If you spend too much time on one resume, you’ll end up not giving the others your full attention, instead making a list of the most important things to look for and then search for that in each person’s resume. It’s unfortunate that you can’t give every resume a deep read through, but it’s better to narrow down the list of applicants by scanning through at first and seeing which ones don’t meet the criteria.
- Tailored Resumes – Check to see if the resume is tailored for your job specifically. If the resume highlights specific skills and customization that are applicable to your job, it shows a particular interest. Obviously, you shouldn’t write off a standard resume, but some people apply to many jobs and may not be as interested in your position. Someone who has specifically catered their resume to your open role clearly has interest and is going above and beyond, showing their genuine interest in working for you.
- Reading Between the Lines – Soft skills are often more challenging to discern from a resume but are crucial. Look for indicators of communication, teamwork, problem-solving, and adaptability. Think about the dynamic at your company to see if you think they would fit into that. If they seem to only work in teams, but your company has a more independent style, it’s possible that they wouldn’t be the best fit. Try to pick up on their soft skills even if they aren’t written into the resume and think about whether they’d be compatible with your organization.
Ultimately, the interview process is where you’re going to best get to know each of the candidates and find out whether they would be a good fit, but resumes can be revealing as well. By focusing on the factors above, companies can improve their odds of spotting the resumes that deserve a closer look.