Get Past Those Resume Screeners (ATS)


Every single company on the Fortune 500 list currently uses some form of an applicant resume screening software. These programs automatically scan your resume and pick out key words. They then approve or reject your resume based on these key words. As a result, you resume often never sees a single human reader.


Here’s how automatic resume screening softwares work:



To ensure your resume gets past the software, pad it with relevant keywords related to the job description. This will help it get detected by the screening software and escalate your CV to a real, human, hiring manager.


Here are examples of the most frequently used keywords:

  • Position Title (80% importance) – e.g. Marketing Manager or Operations Director
  • Nouns or noun phrases common to the position (75% importance) – e.g. “Led various online digital campaigns”
  • Location (71% importance) – e.g. Hong Kong
  • Previous Employer Names (51% importance) – e.g. Microsoft, Google, IBM
  • Degrees (44% importance) – e.g. Masters of Business Administration
  • Certifications (15% importance) – e.g. Cisco Certified Network Engineer
  • Universities (5% importance) – e.g. Hong Kong University, Harvard Business School


If you’re still unsure about the exact keywords to include, do speak to friends in the HR industry or a professional resume writer. They will be well versed in the key words you’ll need to include in your resume.

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