Question: "How do I ensure that my CV gets through applicant tracking systems as I have not been getting any interviews with my current CV?"
Applicant tracking systems (ATS) are used by job boards and an increasing number of employers to automate their recruitment processes. They generally work by comparing the keywords and phrases in CVs to job descriptions uploaded to the system and finding the closest matches. About 70% of all CVs are screened out by ATS systems. As there is no industry-wide ‘algorithm’ or industry standard, there is no magic to wand to get your CV through every system, however, here is our advice to give your CV the best possible chance.
The most important piece of advice is to tailor your CV for every job you apply for. Read the job description and person specification carefully and align your CV to the requirements of each role. The scatter gun approach of using a generic single version of your CV for every application is definitely not the best method for success.
It is important you work with the technology. That means optimising your CV with keywords and phrases contained within the job description. ATS systems work in the same way Google ranks website pages against search terms, so you need to ensure your CV contains the keywords and phrases contained within the job specification. Particularly important are job titles. So, if you can, adapt your job titles accordingly.
The CV template you use should also avoid having tables, diagrams or infographics within it. Whilst these may make your CV more attractive, ATS systems find it difficult to read anything other than text. Important information could therefore be lost if you don’t spell it out in words. Make sure you use industry standard section headings so these are easily recognised too.
Whilst there is no magic panacea for ATS systems, by following all the usual standard best advice for CV writing, you should give yourself the maximum chance of success. Of course, your CV will still be read by a human too and they will ultimately make the decision about calling you to interview, so focus on your achievements to create a compelling CV.