Does HR Use Application Tracking System (ATS) to Hire New Employee?


Do mid-size architecture firms use ATS for pre-screening candidates? I guess larger firms nowadays use it. How about smaller architecture firms?

I noticed my resume is not suitable to survive ATS because of a fancy font type, and paragraph issues. I spent a lot of time to editing my portfolio, but if my application won't survive ATS, there are no meaning of my portfolio. 

If HRs conduct pre-screening candidates, I imagine they pan out with keywords such as "LEED", "Grasshopper", "VRay" "Healthcare Experience" etc... 

What are actual hiring processes like? 

Jun 22, 19 1:39 pm

The vast majority of architecture firms do not use any automated screening tools.  A few of the largest firms might, but even most large firms don't.  That said, some firms do use outside recruiters for some of their hiring needs, and those recruiters may use those types of screening tools to identify potential candidates.

Most architecture firms use real people to screen all application materials. In larger firms there may be an initial screening by an HR person/department or by an office manager or other admin staff, and the materials of those applicants who seem as though they might fit current needs are passed to whatever person/people are involved in hiring - often mid- to senior-level management, or the leads of whatever team or department the targeted position would work with.

I still wouldn't recommend "fancy" fonts, or any difficult-to-read or overly unusual formatting - not because it will trip up automated screening, but because it's not likely to be received well by people.

Jun 22, 19 2:21 pm  · 

Large firms often use services like Taleo or similar where you make an online profile to apply for jobs thereby making your fancy resume font less of an issue. Others might have the option to use your LinkedIn-profile to load all the info. But most firms (in my experience) just read your cv.pdf onscreen and print out the ones they want to interview. 

Jun 22, 19 3:57 pm  · 

if you are randomly sending out applications you are looking at a low percentage strategy.  Focus on making connections with people already working, AIA or other organizations.  Those people can be key to a successful application.  Read the "Hidden Job Market" for much more info.

I got this book from the library back in 2012 after being unemployed for 18 mouths.  Had 5 offers within a month!

Nov 30, 20 11:12 am  · 
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In my experience, I have seen that the vast majority of the really good architecture jobs are found on the hidden market. I know that I and others in my network have largely abandoned advertising for open jobs due to the expense and lack of quality candidates responding.

Nov 30, 20 5:40 pm  · 
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