How Resume Databases Work?

Resume databases (also referred to as resume banks) are systems for storing information about inquiring job seekers. Resume databases vary in their complexity. A high-end system will hold the following information:

  • A Summary of Qualifications form for each applicant; this information is extracted from the job seeker’s resume and placed in a database file according to predetermined fields such as education, work history, or job objective.
  • A list of each job seeker’s keywords (see the “Key Placement” section later in this chapter for a sample list) compiled by the database’s search engine.
  • Each job seeker’s resume, either the electronic version or an image of the paper resume if it was scanned into the system.

Low-end systems have an abbreviated version of the preceding information, or they have the same set of information but require manual inputting, which inevitably increases the chance of errors.

The value in a resume database lies in its ability to store, search, and display resumes in a matter of minutes. Let’s look at how this process works.

Job-Hunt Hint

It’s important to be an e-resume pro in today’s job market as more and more employers are relying on electronic processing of resumes to meet their recruiting needs.

Terms of Employment

A resume bank is a database that holds lots of resumes. Most resume banks have search capabilities to select resumes according to job objective, resume headline (which you’ll read about in Section “Banking on Success: Online Resume Banking”), and keywords specified by the employer or headhunter.

The Inner Workings

When your resume is in a database, it can be accessed in a few ways. A manager or human resources clerk might

  • Browse through resumes at random.
  • Sort resumes so they can be seen in groups according to job objective, industry, or other logical categories.
  • Conduct keyword searches to select and prioritize resumes by how many of those words appear in the resumes.

The beauty of this system is that even if your resume doesn’t make the cut for one hiring manager’s search, it remains in the database for others to consider. With this collective storage system, your resume is potentially visible to anyone who has access to the database.

Bonus Check

Unlike a filing system for hard copy documents (the standard filing cabinet), a resume database allows several people to access the same resume at the same time. For example, three managers in three different locations could each pull up your resume for review at the same time. In the old-fashioned filing cabinet, only one manager at a time could access the resume.