Job Seekers Ask—Should I Tailor My Resume to Each Job I Apply For?

Job Seekers Ask—Should I Tailor My Resume to Each Job I Apply For?

Job seekers frequently ask us that question. And the answer is a resounding yes! This post will discuss why candidates should tailor their resumes for each job application. We’ll also discuss three ways to customize your resume to get past the ATS and impress the hiring team.    

 But what is an ATS? We went to the interview coaches at The Interview Guys for a quick answer: 

Generally speaking, an ATS [applicant tracking system] is a software solution designed to assist companies with recruitment and hiring. It collects candidate data before it ever makes it to the hiring manager, sorting through the information to find great matches for open positions. 

So how can job seekers manage an ATS tool that’s trying to manage them? First things first. 


Search the job description for keywords and phrases. 

It’s critically important for your resume to mirror keywords in the job description. Matching your skills to the job description is also essential; we’ll have more on that later. 

Remember, there are two sides to the hiring equation. The human resources and hiring teams have taken the time to write a detailed job description. They’ve also programmed their ATS to scan applicant resumes for keywords that match their requirements. 

Keywords will be used multiple times in the job description. You need to identify them and use them in your resume in the same manner. 


Match your work experience and skills to the job description. 

First and foremost, always make sure your resume is up to date. This includes education, skills, experience, certifications, etc. Next, you’ll need to tailor your work experience to match the hiring company’s job description as closely as possible.  

Never be deceptive here. But you’ll want to match your terminology to the hiring company’s language. Here’s a simple example. The job description uses the term “sales leadership position,” and your resume uses “sales manager” or “sales executive” in your experience section. You need to change your resume to match your language as closely as possible to what the ATS will be searching for.    


Craft an eye-catching ATS-matching career objective. 

This step dovetails with the first two tips. Your employment objective is usually right underneath the introductory section containing your name and contact information. This is a great place to craft a sentence matching the keywords and skills requirements from the employer’s job description. 

Does this sound complicated? The experienced team at 619 Recruiting can help. 


Are you a candidate looking for your next fantastic job opportunity?  

Our team will help you find employment opportunities that align with your skills, experience, short-term employment goals, and long-term career objectives. Call us today at (866) TEAM 619, or get in touch online. Our expert recruiters are waiting for your call.