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Never Apply for a Job Through the Applicant Tracking System (VIDEO)

Never Apply for a Job Through the Applicant Tracking System (VIDEO)

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter Encourages you to avoid the applicant tracking system when you apply for a job and offers another way you can.


I want to speak with you today about how to best apply to an organization. Sometimes, they're going to go online and want to apply for job that you're interested in, look at their procedures for applying for a job.

nd guess what? They point to the applicant tracking system. Never, never, did I say never yet, never apply through an applicant tracking system. .


First of all, you just another piece of paper, just another piece of data at that point period. Human beings are not scanning the resume at that point; they have systems in place in these tracking systems that are looking for keywords that indicate that you fit the role. Unless it is the exact language that they're looking for, there is no discernment in the systems. They are going to reject you. Hence the use of the term, "the black hole."

Do you think the hiring manager is looking at your resume afterwards? The hiring manager at least has a shot at discerning whether or not you might fit this role. Often in organizations it is the least experienced person in HR whose job it is to do the final scan of what gets spit out of the systems and and, I must in all candor say, some firms are getting thousands of resumes a day there are little bit better than spam. I understand why they are doing it, but that doesn't mean that you as a qualified individual sit should subject yourself to it.

I don't believe you should ever apply for the job through and applicant tracking system like these. Taleo is is a huge offender. There others as well, but most of my clients use Taleo. If you see, you just click your way out. It is a waste of your time.

I'm encouraging you find the hiring manager hperiod ow do you do that? A couple of simple ways period.

Number 1 is, of course, LinkedIn. Get yourself connected with someone at the firm. You can do that by (number 1) by joining large numbers of groups with large numbers of members other within your field find, ing someone within the group whose a member and then sending them a private message asking them if they might know the hiring manager for such and such or could point you to someone who knows that individual who might know that individual.

Only apply to real people. Never ply to the HR organization. I used to have many good clients who were HR professionals. I m in all candor say there a lot who really don't give a darn. I wish it were different but the human resources that they management are there's, not the corporations. Don't apply to HR. Always try to apply to a hiring manager.

If you get turned down by the hiring manager for a job you were qualified for, it's your fault. You didn't do a good enough job to make case and you deserve to be turned down.

Always make sure your resume demonstrates your fit for the role, if it's not obvious as though a 6-year-old could read the resume and see the fit for the job, tailor your resume to the position description. Use exact language from it IF TRUE up to demonstrate you fit for the role. Otherwise, don't waste people's time.

Did you hear me?

Don't waste people's time.

You don't like getting spam about one thing or another. A res resume that doesn't demonstrate a fit for role is nothing better than spam. I will simply say always find someone, a real person, to apply to. Never apply to the HR organization. Only apply to hiring managers.

Always make sure your resume demonstrates the fit for the role by tailoring your resume to the specific position description and I can assure you they get some more interviews.

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter is a coach who worked as a recruiter for what seems like one hundred years. His work involves life coaching, as well as executive job search coaching and business life coaching. He is the host of “Job Search Radio,” “No BS Job Search Advice Radio,” and his newest show, “No BS Coaching Advice.”

Are you interested in 1:1 coaching, interview coaching, advice about networking more effectively, how to negotiate your offer or leadership coaching?  Email me at and put the word, “Coaching” in the subject line and tell me about your circumstances in the body of the email. offers great advice for job hunters—videos, my books and guides to job hunting, podcasts, articles, PLUS a community for you to ask questions of PLUS the ability to ask me questions where I function as your ally with no conflict of interest answering your questions.  

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5 thoughts on “Never Apply for a Job Through the Applicant Tracking System (VIDEO)

  1. This is what I feel is happening to me, getting passed the HR kid who’s not
    sifting through things properly

  2. This is what I feel is happening to me, getting passed the HR kid who’s not sifting through things properly

  3. This is what I feel is happening to me, getting passed the HR kid who’s not sifting through things properly

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