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Fighting the keyword machine

Fighting the keyword...

XML, CSS, PHP, JSP. It’s a veritable alphabet soup out there in the web development world. We’re all accustomed to seeing certain keywords when reviewing resumes, but I wouldn’t rely on them too much. Many companies rely on tools to sort through resumes based on certain keywords, but they’re likely to be disappointed with the result. After all, how do you sort out who’s the best candidates vs. the ones who just used the right buzzwords? Here are three quick tips:

Look under the hood. Understand the context in which the keywords are used. This is easy to do if you’re familiar with the role. See if the keyword usage makes sense based on the candidate’s role and ties into their responsibilities. Also, does their work experience line up with their current job title?

Does the delivery match up with their role? If, for example, a candidate says they’re a UI designer but their deliverables were slanted toward front end coding like CSS, then something’s not quite right. This might make me question whether they’re just trying to move into a new role.

Review their portfolio. Check out the quality of work and you’ll quickly see what caliber candidate they are. It’s easy enough to throw in a few catch phrases into your resume, but the portfolio will give this away.

If you’re having trouble deciphering the keyword maze, just ask a Vitamin T agent for help!

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