ATS compliant resume
Posted in: Education

Why use an ATS Compliant Resume

Ever wonder why you never get shortlisted for your ideal job opportunity? It’s because your resume is not an ATS complaint resume and gets scrapped by the system. It is recommended to optimize your resume as one of the best practices to increase your chances of getting selected for your job role. 

As ats or applicant tracking system has streamlined the recruitment procedure, making it highly efficient and fast. However, to pass this delicate automatic system, your resume must be compliant. Here’s a basic guide to help you through. 

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Understanding ATS complaint

First of all, you need to be familiar with the working of ATS(applicant tracking system). It’s a resume-scanning process software used to filter out candidates based on certain job requirements or keyword relevancy. 

This system was initially used by large companies to handle thousands of daily job applications which were submitted on a weekly schedule. Moreover, more than 99% of Fortune 500 companies rely on ATS software for streamlining recruitment procedures. Understanding the ATS system is crucial to optimizing your resume the right way.

Use Relevant Keywords

You need to use the right relevant keywords as they are mentioned in the job description and use them most suitably in your resume. Moreover, you need to understand that the ATS system scans your resume for unique terms to sort out whether your resume is ideal.

Simple Formatting

The ATS system requires simplicity therefore you should avoid using charts, unusual fonts, or images. You should stick to writing proper resume formatting with clear bullet points and headings. 

Avoid Using Fancy Headers and Footers

The ATS simply needs help understanding information placed in footers or headers. Therefore, you should avoid writing important information like contact or personal details in the header or footer section. 

Use Standard Job Titles

You might want to use innovative or fancy job titles on your resume but it is best to stick to proper formal industry-specific titles which are recognized by ATS (applicant tracking system). 


You need to ensure that your resume is free from any grammatical errors or typos as this can greatly increase your chances of getting your resume rejected by ATS. Therefore, you should always proofread your resume before final submission. 

Save as Plain Text

While all ATS(applicant tracking system) can read simple text files they may not be most suitable for PDF documents or other formats. Therefore it is important to always save your ideal resume in plain text format when you are unsure. 

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Creating a compliant resume

You need to make your resume ATS compliant which means you need to understand the required system and tailor make your resume accordingly. The process is a unique mixture of simple formatting, using the right keywords, and proofreading. Moreover, implementing these important steps will greatly increase your chances of making it past the automated system and reaching your recruiter. 

Stay Consistent

Maintaining a cohesive style and format is recommended to follow for your review. Consistency ensures that your resume will be easier for ATS to filter and for the hiring person to sort. You need to ensure that your resume is written to be human-friendly to pass the ATS process. 

Opt for Standard File Types

Most ATS systems can work with various file types, however, it is recommended to stick with traditional file formats such as .doc or .docx. Moreover, these resume formats are less known to cause incompatibility problems and ensure that your resume information is readable. 

Don’t Overstuff Keywords

You should know not to overstuff your resume with relevant keywords as it might make your resume to be listed as spam and might get rejected by the ATS system. Moreover, if your professional resume reaches your recruiter, it should sound natural and meaningful. 

Be Specific About Dates

Make sure to correctly write information about your employment. Vague timelines can confuse the ATS system which can lead your resume to being rejected. Therefore, always utilize industry-standard format for specifying dates to avoid confusion. 

A good ATS-compliant resume is about adding strategy rather than just using keywords or using specific formats. You need to prioritize easy-to-read information and relevancy, and you will quickly be on your way to creating an effective resume guaranteed to impress recruiters and robots. 

List Your Skills Clearly

The ATS(applicant tracking system) looks for unique skills that are ideal for the job description. You need to ensure that you write your skills accurately. Furthermore, you can include a detailed skill section for your resume and list down competencies, languages, and familiarity with tools. Ensure that your resume mentions the skills mentioned in the job description.

Use Job Descriptions as Your Guide

When crafting an ATS-friendly resume the best resource you can use is the job description. It provides you with key details as to what the employer is seeking. Cut out the main key points and roles from the job description and use them suitably in your resume. Furthermore, this process will provide more possibilities for matching ATS resume criteria. 

Update Your Resume Regularly

You need to ensure that your resume remains updated with your recent accomplishments and experiences. Moreover, as you gain more experience or change jobs, your resume should show these updates. If your resume is outdated, it may not be compatible with the demands of ATS and the competitive job market. 

Making an ATS-friendly resume is an innovative process that needs refinement throughout your career. Moreover, this gradual refinement will ensure that your resume remains relevant, increasing your options for success in the recruitment field online. 

Tailor Your Resume for Each Job Application

As each job has its unique demands and requirements, it’s worth the time to tailor your job resume according to your job application. Moreover, customizing a resume to align with the needed skills and relevancy increases your chances of passing the ATS process. This will also show your unique interest in the specific job to the employer as you have taken time to understand the job needs. 

Focus on Achievements

The ATS (applicant tracking system) process is designed to choose the most suitable job candidate. You need to focus on attained achievements in your resume to stand out. Highlight your unique achievements and success attained instead of listing work roles as this will highlight your potential as a better candidate. 

Never Try to Trick the ATS

As tempting as it is to try to beat the ATS process, attempting to trick the process by hiding leading keywords in your resume can lead to rejection automatically. So always use ethical ways to use relevant keywords while focusing on relevancy and clarity. 

Seek Professional Help if Needed

If you think that creating an ATS-friendly resume is difficult, try to seek out professional help. Career coaches and resume writing professional services understand the needs of ATS systems and can help you craft your ideal resume

Creating an ATS-friendly resume requires a strategic understanding of presenting your accomplishments and skills efficiently. By following these useful guidelines, you will increase by getting past the ATS process and get highlighted by the recruiter. Just remember, the goal is not to beat ATS but to land an interview and get the job. 


A resume is a crucial tool for your job hunt. It acts as your first impression for your potential recruiters and it must impress robots and humans alike. Therefore, your resume to be as compliant is no longer an option but a necessity. 

Although creating an ATS-friendly resume might seem difficult, you need to follow the strategic way outlined to increase your success in securing the interview. Your resume should be not just ATS friendly but should represent your achievements, experiences, and skills in the best way possible. 

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