Tips for Creating a Scannable Resume

Tips for Creating a Scannable Resume

Many human resource departments are now using technology to streamline their search for new employees.  It’s called electronic applicant tracking, and it can search for just about anything in your resume. It starts with a scanner, and can quickly turn your resume into a searchable computer file.

Through powerful artificial intelligence, the new technologies will pull out your name, identifying information, and keywords which describe the scope of your skills, work experiences and education. The data extraction from your resume allows human resource departments to match your information with open requisitions across the spectrum of job openings. Scanning can work in your favor, making it easier for you to be considered for more jobs, while keeping your one resume on file. Updating your information is easy – just submit a new resume and the scanning process can replace the old information with the new.

Why is it important for you to know this? – When you prepare a resume for the computer to read, you want it to be “scannable”. A scannable resume is clean so the scanner can get a clean image.

  • A scannable resume has standard fonts and crisp, dark type such as a laser printer or typewriter with a new ribbon would produce – so the OCR (optical character reader) can recognize every letter.
  • A scannable resume has plenty of facts for the artificial intelligence to extract – the more details provide, the more opportunities you’ll have for your skills to match available positions. That does not mean your resume needs to be long-in fact the best resumes tell Resumix about work history, job titles, education and degrees, certifications and licenses and skills utilized in your positions.

Tips For Maximizing Scannability

  • Use light-colored paper (white is best) and avoid paper that is very lightweight, slick, or contains dark speckles.
  • Place your name at the top of the page on its own line. Use standard address format below your name. (Your name should also be the first text on pages two and three.)
  • List each phone number on its own line.
  • The best method for submitting a resume is by email. If you mail your resume please place your resume in a flat envelope and do not fold or staple.
  • Use a common, nondecorative typeface (such as Arial, Helvetica, Optima, Times, and Courier) and keep the font size between 10 and 14 points. (Avoid Times 10 point.)
  • One of the most important factors is whether or not letters touch each other. Scanning systems have difficulty interpreting characters that are melded into one, so make sure that no characters touch each other. Italics and bold are both fine, as long as the letters do not touch.