top of page

A Guide To The Applicant Tracking System (ATS)

What is ATS?

ATS stands for Applicant Tracking System and is an automated recruiting process for companies. Some examples include Oracle Taleo Cloud, Bullhorn, Greenhouse and Workable.

Key Highlights of ATS

1. Scans resume for important keywords & qualifications that they use as benchmarks

2. ATS uses these 'benchmarks' to select the best-suited applicants for the job

3. Resumes are then passed on to hiring personnel to be reviewed

When is ATS used and Why is it Important?

Typically used by larger companies, as these companies tend to receive a huge number of applicants for a job posting. It has been discovered that over 90% of Fortune 500 companies utilise ATS in their hiring process. ATS helps companies to do the 'first cut', significantly reducing the number of resumes the HR department has to go through.

Currently, almost 75% of resumes in the market are NOT optimised for ATS.

What does this mean?

If a resume does not get through ATS, it will never be seen by a real person.

It is important to ensure your resume is ATS optimised in order to stand a chance of securing the job.

How do we optimise resumes for ATS?

ATS typically uses these 4 main categories to sort through resumes:

1. Education

2. Contact Information

3. Skills

4. Work Experience

Hence, it is critical to ensure that the resume is formatted in a way such that the system recognises each category distinctly.

Basic Checklist for ATS organization:

  • Include acronyms of titles/certifications whenever possible (eg. National University of Singapore, NUS)

  • Have a title that informs the ATS about the target position/industry

  • Keep all information within the document body of the resume (nothing in the header or footer)

Want to further optimise your resume?

Check out our branding services! All CareerSocius resumes carefully crafted to be ATS optimised with recruiter input.


About CareerSocius

CareerSocius is a social enterprise that helps job-seekers in Singapore maximise their career potential. We are dedicated to building up your personal brand and bringing your career stories to life. This article was brought to you by one of our community writers. Interested to share your career story? Write to us at!

With a dedicated team of resume writers spanning across various industries, we offer the relevant expertise and experience to help. In need of personal branding services? Check out our services at


Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page