When you want to start working online I know it can be overwhelming for you to know where to start. In most of my posts, I write about beginner-friendly jobs because I was there too! I too wanted to know how to start working online.
Along the way, I took in all the advice I was given. In this post, I’m going to give you the best tips and advice I was given to help you find your way of working online.
Disclaimer: This blog post contains affiliate or referral links that may reward me in the event of a subscription or sale (at no extra cost to you!). I only recommend products or services that I know and trust.
How Applying For Online Jobs Really Work to Start Working Online
Almost every company online uses an applicant tracking system (ATS) before someone takes a look at your resume. This is to weed out a BAZILLION of other resumes that are applying for the same job. These systems collect and sort through BAZILLION resumes.
Your resume isn’t typically going directly to a recruiter or hiring manager. It’s first going to be processed by an ATS. Whether a human recruiter ever sees your resume could depend on how well your resume is optimized for ATS algorithms.
Why Employers Use Applicant Tracking Systems
When top employers use these systems, it helps with keeping all the resumes in one place and stay organized. In theory, these systems also save time by automatically surfacing and highlighting top candidates. The systems also search for keywords related to the job you are applying for. In reality, ATS does help professionals to narrow their applicant pool, but top candidates can still slip through the cracks.
Almost all large corporations use the tracking system. This includes Indeed, LinkedIn, and Monster. They filter resumes in an applicant tracking system by searching for key skills and titles. This information will help you know how to structure your resume to start working online.
The above screenshot shows how the ATS won’t consider your resume if it doesn’t have the keyword the program is looking for. In this case, it is “PHP.”
Tips On Structuring Your Resume So You Can Start Working Online
You will have better luck beating the (ATS) if you can predict what keywords it might be filtering for. For example, a company hiring for an Assistant Manager will probably get 500 applications. Their first step will probably be a search for an ” Assistant Manager.” The system will isolate candidates that have done the exact job before. Anyone that doesn’t have that exact term in their resume gets the boot!
Keep it basic and use words and phrases such as ” work experience, education, skills, and certification. It might seem boring, but it’s better to submit a straightforward resume than being rejected by the ATS.
Resume Writing Tips
- Use Arial as your font. Other serif fonts (with tails) to consider that are easy to read include Georgie, Bell MT, Goudy Old Style, and Garamond. Some applicant tracking systems have trouble reading serif fonts such as Times New Roman or Cambria.
- Make your headings and names stand out. Make headlines bold, Italicise, CAPITALISE, or underline. Increase the font size to 14-16 points.
- Try and keep your resume to one page, leaving the reader wanting to know more.
- Contact information. List your full name, address, and contact information at the top of the page. You should center the information and be sure to bold and CAPITALISE your name.
- Value statement. State the role you are applying for and what values you bring to the job. Objectives state what you are trying to accomplish; value statements explain why you should be hired.
- Core strength. List industry keywords and specific skill sets that pertain to your job and industry. This is a high-level overview of your qualifications and industry knowledge.
- Experience. However, if education is not the strongest component of your resume, go ahead and list your experience first, starting with your most current job and all your responsibilities.
- Education. Clearly state your schooling from the most recent institution you’ve attended, with all dates, locations, and certifications received.
- Honors & Awards. After education and experience, you can list your professional skills and any relevant awards or certifications.
Don’t just willy-nilly your job hunt, Instead only apply to those you really want. Make a list of all the companies you really want to be considered for, then find people you know at those companies or someone that might know someone. One of the best ways to increase your resume to be the top choice is by knowing someone else that can vouch for you.
If you don’t know anyone, then try a group search on Facebook. Facebook has a lot of these groups. Join a few and then make a post asking about a certain online job.
Maybe something like, “hey, all I’m new here! Have you heard of ( company?) they hire for (subject)”. Then just see if anyone sparks up information. You could also then ask in the comments if there are similar companies they know doing the same thing. You might get someone that would message you and then even refer you to the company they already work for. Often times they have a referral employee code for you to use.
Start Working Online With A Stand Out Resume
You will find a lot of different companies that will write your resume if you did a quick Google search. In order to have one written for you and know all about how the ATSs work, I’ll give you some I recommend.
Zipjob will review your existing resume for free and give you feedback on what you should improve, including if your resume will make it through the ATSs used by so many companies. If your resume isn’t cutting it, then you have the option to hire one of their professional writers to take your resume to the next level. There’s no obligation, no hidden fees, and your information is never shared.
Resume Coach is a great platform that will allow you to build your resume with step-by-step coaching and expert advice. See examples and use their templates.
With Resume.com, you can build a professional resume for free. It’s also free to download. They also have samples.
Canva is also a great platform to create your resume with templates galore! I use this platform almost every day to create my pictures for social media. I occasionally help others and create their resumes too.
There are so many options. Just note when creating your resume with certain elements, you can choose many free options, but with a $ sign next to it, you will be charged before you will be able to download it.
If you do decide to use some of the images that aren’t free, you won’t be paying a lot, maybe a few bucks. You also have the option to upgrade anytime. Plans start around $9.95 a month.
Resume Building Vs Online Portfolio
when it comes to knowing the difference between an online resume and an online portfolio, it’s hard to know exactly what you may need because it depends on the type of experience you have.
A resume is a document that summarises who you are and what you do. If you are or have experience with photography, web design, or anything that can be placed visually, you can and should have an online portfolio.
A portfolio is a collection of your projects with descriptions and pictures. A portfolio should be attached to the job application to support the experience section of the resume. This is only if the project experience section on your resume is short and if you want to showcase your skills visually.
The Benefits And What To Include In Your Online Portfolio
Related: 25+ Online Jobs from Home Without Investment
I hope you received some value with this beginner’s guide so you can start working online as soon as you can. Understanding what keywords to use and the structure of your resume and or portfolio is an important asset to have online.
You can always go back to update it as your skills evolve.
Let me know if you have created your resume or portfolio, and I’m curious to know if you decided to scan your resume through any of the platforms, how did it do, and what did you have to fix?
This was a great and informative post. I did not know about ATS before this, and am going to take a look at some of the resources you mentioned! Thanks LeeAnn.
You are very welcome and so glad you found this post helpful.
Such an informative and helpful piece of work. I am sure, many of us are looking for such solutions and I cannot thankyou enough for this simple and effective way of delivery.
Thank You so much! I’m glad you found this valuable:)