Keyword tricks that work better than stealing from a job ad

Fact #1: Applying to more jobs will not guarantee a higher success rate if you don’t know how to optimize your resume for keywords that matter. What then, are these keywords that matter, you may ask.

Keyword tricks

Fact #2: Most candidates are already recycling keywords in their resume from the job advertisement for which they are submitting an application. That’s a no-brainer. But what if you’re looking at a poorly written job posting that isn’t very helpful for finding good keywords?

Our CareerSifu experts recommend a second trick that works better than simply stealing from a job description for inspiration on the right kind of keywords to highlight in your CV.

Check out the LinkedIn profile of peers at the organization you are applying to, or that of the hiring manager’s team. If none exists, investigate the next level down or up. The same goes for current employees at competitor companies in positions similar to the ones you are applying to.

Scour these LinkedIn profiles for commonly used terminologies, skills, or industry lingo.

What do these individuals have in the ‘Skills and Expertise’ section of their LinkedIn page? Which of those have they gotten endorsements for?

Those are probably the same ones that robots are currently using to filter for candidates and rate them for their job match.

Another benefit of finding out who your future peers are is to get a clearer sense of whether or not your background and skills is actually one that matches what a typical hire looks like for these companies.

If yes, then great.

If no, you might want to review the kind of jobs you are applying to. Better yet, consult with our career specialists on what your job search options are and how to score an interview if you are an unlikely hire.


So the next time you catch yourself repeating keywords from a job ad, go the extra mile by doing what we just recommended.

Most applicants don’t even think to do their research prior, and wind up spending time and effort submitting applications that get filtered out by ATSs.

Spending an hour or two on LinkedIn could yield far more insights to help you build a stronger CV. So is reading our next guide about how to game ATSs to make sure your CV actually gets seen by a human recruiter.


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