Database Searches Make Resume Keywords Critical

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Inundated by resumes from job-seekers, employers have increasingly relied on digitizing resumes, placing those resumes in keyword-searchable databases, and using software to search those databases for specific keywords that relate to job vacancies. Most Fortune 1000 companies, in fact, and many smaller companies now use these technologies. In addition, many employers search the databases of third-party job-posting and resume-posting boards on the Internet. Based on figures from the early 2000s, it is safe to estimate that well over 80 percent of resumes are searched for job-specific keywords. The bottom line is that if you apply for a job with a company that searches databases for keywords, and your resume doesn’t have the keywords the company seeks for the person who fills that job, you are pretty much dead in the water. To some extent, job-seekers have no way of knowing what the words are that employers are looking for when they search resume databases. But job-seekers have information and a number of tools at their disposal that can help them make educated guesses as to which keywords the employer is looking for. See a detailed discussion of resume keywords and how to identify them in our article, Tapping the Power of Keywords to Enhance Your Resume’s Effectiveness and use our Keywords Worksheet to help identify keywords for use in your resume.

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