Tuesday, June 5, 2012

ATS (a.k.a. Skynet) is Keeping You from Getting a Job

Why aren't you getting a job? Why isn't a company that received 25,000 applicants for an engineering position convinced that not a single, blessed one of them is even remotely qualified for an interview, much less a job?

The above link is to a blog that offers some insights. Since there are more folks out there without jobs, companies are getting more applicants for existing jobs. As a defensive maneuver, they've set up ATS, "applicant tracking systems"--basically, they have a software package scan incoming materials. The software decides what the human handlers get to see.

Unfortunately, Skynet (reference to the "Terminator" flicks) is deciding that nobody meets its exacting standards. In other words, the software is stupid. Or the humans are. Maybe both.

Info and inspiration for this blog entry came from the Wall Street Journal, in a story that ran May 30, 2012, and as of this writing already has nearly 400 comments posted--many of them informative. Here's the link for the story (although I found it rather heavy-handed on advertising, and thus slow-loading):

It's a hot topic that seems to have employers regretting the error of their ways. Whether they'll change is another story. The moral of the story for job-seekers is: study these materials, and find ways to game the software's criteria for keywords.

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