Uploading your CV on a job board is a quick and easy way to let the world know you’re open to new job opportunities. However, as a candidate, you‘re competing with hundreds of others, so you need to make your CV as competitive as possible for a recruiter to find it among all of them.
To improve your chances of success, it is worth knowing what happens to your CV once it’s in an online database, how a job board actually works, and how a recruiter uses this resource to find their candidates.
While uploading your CV tends to be free of charge for a candidate, job boards usually charge recruiters for accessing their database and getting your contact details. Therefore, before a recruiter buys your contact details, they want to be sure your profile really interests them. Some job boards will only show a general description of your profile while others show everything except your contact details.
When entering your CV details into a job board you usually get the option to fill in various text fields and choose from a long list of drop-down menus. And then there’s always an option to simply upload or copy-paste your CV. When you’re actively looking for work and have to post your CV on various job boards and company and recruitment agency databases, it is tempting to want to save time and choose the latter option. However, if you really want recruiters to find and call you, take the time to describe your current position, title and target job and fill in all the fields required.
A recruiter puts in combinations of keywords to find the candidate they are looking for. If the exact words for the skills, qualifications or experience that they are searching do not appear in your CV, you will never appear in the search results. For example, instead of putting “computer literate” you should specify that you’re proficient in Word, Excel etc. Otherwise if a recruiter is looking for somebody with advanced Excel skills, your CV simply won’t show up in a search.
Before writing your CV, imagine what search words a recruiter might use to find someone like you for your target job. Don't presume that because your previous company used one job title, all companies and recruiters will use the same one. If your title in your previous company was IT Analyst and you were giving support to the company’s customers, for clarity’s sake, you might want to call yourself a Support Engineer in your CV.
Therefore, it is important to think not only about using correct grammar in your CV, but also the exact words you are using.
Visit your own profile
Last but not least, online databases usually present search results to a recruiter based on a match between keywords and a CV in a chronological order. That means that recently updated or visited candidate profiles will get a higher ranking. Moreover, a recruiter might hesitate to buy contact information for a candidate who hasn’t visited their profile in months, thinking they’re probably no longer looking for a career change. Therefore go and visit your profile once in a while to keep your profile relevant if you are actively looking for new opportunities.
For all the reasons above, as a recruiter I would suggest you to go through your CV and be active on the job boards you’re interested in order to increase your chances of receiving a call with a job opportunity.