Who's got skills? Recruiters only spend up to seven seconds scanning a resume when sourcing niche talent, and if the skills they’re looking for aren’t jumping off the page, there’s a good chance you won’t make the cut.
Technical skills are the knowledge and abilities needed to take on mathematical, engineering, scientific or computer related duties, and appropriately identifying them on your resume helps a recruiter or hiring manager quickly connect the skills required in the job description with your abilities.
Take these tips into consideration to effectively highlight your technical skills.
1. Include a separate "Technical Skills Summary"
Immediately direct the reader of your resume ( be it the bots or humans) to your qualifications by including a technical skills summary. This bullet point list should be located at the top of your resume, separate from your work history section. "I always recommend adding technical skills up top before going into the actual work history," advises Isaac Castelan, a Senior Technical Recruiter with Procom. Doing so will help your application's SEO ranking within the Applicant Tracking System used, and will also grasp a recruiter's or hiring manager's attention once it's reached their inbox.
2. Include technical skills within each job role
Your work history section should have four key pieces of information under each job role: Project overview, quantifiable achievements, keywords and technical skills/program languages used. Including this information ensures your qualifications and years of experience are clearly represented. "A summary should appear at the top of the resume, and technical skills should also be added to each relevant assignment," advises Valerie Anderson-Migliore, a Technical Recruiter with Procom. "If a recruiter is looking for five years of Java Development - that skill should appear on five years' worth of assignments."
3. Don't over exaggerate
When it comes to your resume, refrain from confusing experience with exposure. Johny Bui, a Technical Recruiter with Procom agrees, "Exposure is not the same as hands-on experience and thus exposure to a technology or software should not be included in the technical skills section." Working at a tech company that specializes in web applications in any role other than IT is very different than being employed as an Applications Developer. And including program languages you don't personally posses will backfire when a recruiter or hiring manager watches your nose Pinocchio in the interview.
4. Technical skills to include
Your resume should be tailored to each job you apply to, but these types of technical skills should be a template consideration and listed if you have direct, hands-on experience:
• Big Data Analysis
• Programming/Coding Languages
• Project Management
• Information Security
• Social Media Platforms and Analytics Tools
• Technical Writing
Remember, when listing each skill, be specific as possible. Simply listing "social media" won't help you win the resume war. Drill down and list specifics like, Facebook insights, Google Analytics, HubSpot reporting, Twitter ad promotions, etc.
5. Use keywords
As you tailor your resume, identify the keywords used in the job description, and use them as they're written on your resume. Because semantics matter to an ATS, and if "quantitative research" is a required skill, "numerical data mining"on your resume will most likely be lost in the matrix.
Sometimes it can take a certain level of skill to navigate all the technicalities of a job search, but properly identifying your technical skills on a resume is one sure way to up your game.
Are you working with a staffing agency to find your next great IT job?