Resume Keywords and Tips for Using Them

resume keywords
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Most companies use recruiting management software to screen candidates for job openings. Resume keywords are the words that hiring managers use to search their database of resumes.

Your resume keywords should include specific job requirements, including your skills, software and technology competencies, relevant credentials, and previous positions and employers.

For example, based on experience, a candidate for an employee benefits management position might use the following resume keywords: employee benefit plans, CEBS, health care benefits, benefit policy, FMLA.

A customer service representative could include: customer service, customer tracking system, computer skills, order entry experience.

Tips for Using Resume Keywords

In order to get found, your resume needs to contain keywords that directly target the jobs you are interested in. Some people incorporate these buzzwords and key terms into past job descriptions, while others simply list them at the bottom of the resume.

The keywords in your resume should reference specific job requirements, and represent your skills, software and technology competencies, relevant credentials, and previous employers.

Using resume keywords will increase the chances of your resume being compatible with a job that's open, and your resume showing up in the hiring manager's search results.

Here's how to match your qualifications to a job.

Cover Letter Keywords

Similarly, you can include keywords in your cover letter. This way, if your cover letter is screened, you will have a better chance of getting selected for an interview as a qualified candidate.

How to Find Keywords

To find keywords to use, take a look at some actual job postings. Search for job listings that match your background and experience. Then look at the keywords included in the job postings and incorporate them into your resume. The buzz words they are looking for will usually be apparent in the job posting, so be sure to review them to make sure you have touched on most, if not all, of the keywords that are most relevant to each position.

The best way to find keywords to use in your resume is to use a job search engine to search for job listings. Check the results to see if you can find a common theme in the keywords listed in the job postings.

Incorporate those skill keywords into your resume. Also check this list of action keywords you can use to describe those skills, and these keywords listed by job.

Be specific. The more focused and specific you are, the better chance you'll have at being a good match. Including a mix of skills or keywords such as soft skills and certifications can not only widen your scope for potential jobs, but also strengthen your resume and cover letter writing skills. With practice, it will become more and more apparent what hiring managers and other personnel may be looking for in an applicant for each position that interests you.

Lists of Keywords

Read More: Cover Letter Keywords | Resume Keyword Examples | How to Use Resume Keywords

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