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Making the 6 Seconds the Recruiter Spends on Your Resume Count

According to a study released by The Ladders, an online job-matching service, recruiters spend an average of six seconds reviewing an individual resume. So what are they actually looking for, and what will get your CV through that six-second window?

According to a study released by The Ladders, an online job-matching service, recruiters spend an average of six seconds reviewing an individual resume. So what are they actually looking for, and what will get your CV through that six-second window?

stopwatch

(Photo Credit: William Warby/Flickr)

The Ladders conducted an “eye tracking” study on recruiters to record and analyze the most crucial information they were scanning.

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“In the short time that they (the recruiters) spend with your resume, they look at your name, current title and company, current position start and end dates, previous title and company, previous position start and end dates, and education,” writes Vivian Giang at Business Insider.

Here are a few tips to make it easy for the recruiters and to increase your chances in the shortlist race.

  • Use a clear and concise format.
  • Give the information they’re looking for in a platter – in other words, make it easy for the recruiters to find the information they are looking for.
  • Your resume is not your professional memoir. Too much detail can easily be irrelevant detail. Stick to the point and reserve the rest for the interview call.
  • Some organizations do respond well to creative resumes, but these are few and far in between. Don’t let a few popular media anecdotes skew your judgment. Consider whether it’s worth the time and effort to build a creative resume, or whether the company you’re applying to might respond better to a traditional format. 
  • Review your resume carefully for spelling and grammar, and have a trusted friend proofread it, to make sure you haven’t made any careless errors that will get your resume tossed in the trash.

Tell Us What You Think

Do you have any suggestions or experiences to share? Leave a comment or join the discussion on Twitter.

Padmaja Ganeshan Singh
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GambuzinoPTLouiseDouglas1964AV Recent comment authors
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AV
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AV

My company posted a job on a website looking for recruits. I couldn’t believe how many called at least  4 times wanting to ask questions working hours, did we receive it, when are we calling for interviews, benefits this was within 24 hours of posting the job. We had one person show up in person. I don’t think I would ever have the guts to show up. I am not up to date on etiquette. I thought it was a week follow-up or maybe two weeks.

Douglas1964
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Douglas1964

As a hiring manager, I take less than 1 minute to review a resume.  I look at the organization of the resume, quickly look at their experience and then education.  If they meet all of our criteria for the position based on those three key things, they will be called and “screened” to see if they will fit into the culture of the organization, as well as get a feel if they are really interested in the position or just applying because they need a job until the right one comes along.  Either way, I agree with the article.  Short… Read more »

GambuzinoPT
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GambuzinoPT

I would prefer to know what hiring companies look at and what time they spend looking at CVs than recruiters.
Recruiters don’t spend not even 6 seconds, the keyword search robot does it that for them.

Louise
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Louise

Good advice thanks.  (You should proof read your article too as there is a grammatical error in the second last point)!

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