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5 ways to screen resumes more effectively

3/14/2019

5 ways to screen resumes more effectively

If your company has an open position, your job as hiring manager kicks into high gear when you receive the first in what's likely to be a flood of resumes. The task of filtering through all those documents becomes as much about time management as it does about finding the right candidate, so that you're not spending entire days just reviewing.

With that in mind, here are five tips that will help you sort through those dozens or more resumes efficiently, but without sacrificing the quality of candidates.

1) Target good grammar and spelling

When someone is looking for a new job, it's vital that they look over their various documents a number of times to make sure everything is exactly right, according to Job Monkey. But if they have multiple grammar mistakes or spelling errors, that may be a sign their attention to detail is lacking or that they haven't truly taken their time with the effort.

Beyond that, those who write well are usually going to be strong communicators in general, so adding that kind of candidate to a team will usually be a positive.

2) Look for hard numbers

When people say they "helped improve sales," or "oversaw a large team" at a previous job, that usually leads one to wonder how much sales actually grew or how large the team was, Job Monkey advised. But when a candidate says they "helped improve sales 10 percent year over year" or "oversaw a team of 25," that kind of quantifiable information becomes far more actionable for hiring managers when trying to choose between a number of candidates.

3) What do they have to say?

Often, when candidates are attemptng to stand out, they will - wisely - use a lot of the same keywords or language as the job listing, according to Dice. That helps them "beat" any screening software and come across to hiring managers as someone who "gets it." But to determine whether they're a good candidate or merely someone who knows how to get interviews, you need to look past the keyword use and determine what they actually bring to the table.

4) The right kind of brevity

When it looks like a candidate has a lengthy list of accomplishments, that can really draw the eye, but upon closer inspection, they may not pass muster, according to Work Coach Cafe. Some people may not actually have a lot of practical experience that would be beneficial in this specific job, so if they're listing college experience or other details that aren't pertinent just to fill space, that should be disqualifying in many cases.

5) Specificity

The more candidates can do to make sure they're highlighting their work history in ways that are easy to understand and perfectly clear, especially where dates are concerned, that's a good sign, Work Coach Cafe added. Every piece of work history should, ideally, include both the month and year they began and ended.

Of course, hiring managers should also use their best judgment with these tips. If a candidate seems great but has a single minor typo on their resume, that alone might not be reason to disqualify them.

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