Looking for a job? Here’s how to write a resume an AI would love.


Through job matching platforms and AI-powered games and interviews, companies are increasingly relying on AI to streamline the hiring process. But some job seekers feel frustrated and misunderstood by these technologies.

Malika Devaux is a student at: HOPE Programis a Brooklyn-based nonprofit that provides business education. Devaux is looking for a job and we asked him to complete a 90 second personality test essay that evaluates candidates based on their Big Five personality traits.

His results showed him to be pragmatic and carefree, but Devaux disagreed with his reading of AI’s personality. And he found the test confusing. “According to me [this test] it would cause me to lose my chance to have that position or an opportunity where I could finally shine,” she says.

So how can you make the algorithms work in your favor when you apply for your next job?

In the final episode of the MIT Technology Review podcast “On Machines We Trust” We asked career and job matching experts for practical tips on how to succeed in a job market increasingly influenced by AI.

Forget the traditional advice about resumes. Instead of choosing a unique design or color scheme and adding solid job descriptions, focus on making it as simple and straightforward as possible, she says. Ian Siegel, co-founder and CEO ZipRecruiter.

“Conventional wisdom will kill you when you’re looking for a job,” says Siegel. You want the simplest, most boring resume template you can find. You want to write in the shortest, clearest words you can write like a caveman.”

Siegel says that in most cases, when candidates apply for jobs, their resumes will first be processed by an automated application tracking system (ATS). To increase your chances of getting an interview, you should submit a resume that AI will interpret correctly.

Use short, descriptive sentences to help an AI parse your resume, says Siegel. Clearly list your skills. If possible, include details of where you learned them and how long you have used them, as well as license or certification numbers that confirm your expertise. “You want to be declarative and quantitative because the software is trying to figure out who you are and decide if you’re going to get in front of a human,” he says.

And as long as you meet some of the qualifications in the job description, don’t be discouraged from applying for jobs that require more experience than you have.

“If you have any of the skills listed, I want you to apply,” says Siegel. “Let the algorithms decide if it’s a great match, and they’ll rank you top or bottom.”

Create multiple versions of your resume. When you streamline your resume for an AI, you might worry that you’re messing up its flow and readability. So make another version for human review, he says. Gracy Sargsyaninterim executive director New York University Career Center.

“Some students said to me, ‘I did what you told me to do. I made sure my resume was full of keywords. And now it sounds a bit like a cheesy marketing document,” says Sarkissian. He tells them to make another one, in a personalized design and format, to email or hand over to their hiring manager at an interview.

Sarkissian says you should also change your resume to reflect the description of each job you’re applying for. Each job posting contains keywords that a prospective employer’s ATS is likely to use to prioritize candidates. Pick a few that match your experience and sprinkle them on your resume.


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