Things that recruiters can take into consideration while reviewing developers’ CVs


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The software development industry grows faster than other business sectors. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of software developers and quality assurance analysts is expected to grow by 25% by 2031. Yet, to fully take advantage of these job market conditions, you need a strong resume that articulates your value for top employers. A good CV should summarize your technical skills, put forward the accomplishments, and list projects comprehensively.

According to a popular study, recruiters spend 6-7 seconds on each resume. While it is hardly possible to evaluate a candidate within seconds, most recruiters indeed spend less than a minute on an initial resume review. In today’s blog, we will explain what IT recruiters pay attention to in software developers’ CVs and what are the key decisive factors for shortlisting a candidate.

If you are a software developer looking for a job in an IT outsourcing agency or at one of the Big Tech companies, keep reading to find out what matters to recruiters and how to adjust your resume accordingly.

What do recruiters pay attention to in developers’ CV?

Resume design and formatting

While good resume formatting is not a decisive factor for shortlisting a candidate, it surely makes an impression on a recruiter. A person reviewing resumes will pay more attention to a well-structured, effectively formatted CV than to a document with messed-up formatting. Moreover, a good layout shows that the candidate can prioritize and organize information. Make sure to add a photo.

Technical skills and competencies

Recruiters typically look for specific programming languages, frameworks, and relevant tech skills in developers’ resumes. If the candidate lacks one or more required skills, they get eliminated.

Your two most recent positions

During the initial review, a recruiter tries to find the links between your 1-2 most recent positions and the target job. They take notice of the company’s industry, projects you worked on, and technologies. For example, if you used the required programming languages over 5 years ago, they might assume that you aren’t perfectly qualified.

Chronology of jobs

Ideally, the Professional Experience section should demonstrate a stable work history with progressive growth in responsibility. If you are applying for a highly competitive job, employment gaps, job-hopping and inconsistent career choices (for example, switching from the software development position to technical support) can become ‘red flags’.

Metrics and accomplishments

When screening your resume, a recruiter pays special attention to awards, accomplishments, and other forms of recognition. They also look for measurable results, such as increased code efficiency, bug fixing, cutting downtime, or completing a complex project according to the scope.

Your education and certifications

Most companies do not require a higher education these days. Yet, if you have a degree in computer science or relevant certifications, this will be a plus as it adds credibility to your skills. This is especially important for entry-level developers with little commercial experience.

Based on the above-listed criteria, recruiters identify candidates who are a potentially good fit for the open position. If your team experiences a shortage of software developers, and the recruitment process seems time-consuming, you can eliminate it completely by taking advantage of IT staff augmentation. By outsourcing software development, you can strengthen the in-house team and save costs on onboarding and hiring – know more about staff augmentation.

5 tips to write an effective CV: Tips from developers’ CV writing service

Based on the strategies that recruiters use when screening CVs of software developers, here’s what you can do to improve your resume:

List technical skills and proficiency levels

As you list your technical skills (Java, Python, HTML/CSS, MySQL, PHP, and others), list years of experience next to each skill. This will help the recruiter accurately assess your background. Alternatively, you may explain how you used these skills and programming languages at work.

Add a catchy Summary of qualifications

The Summary section serves as an elevator pitch, and you can summarize your areas of expertise, biggest accomplishments, and successes here. Junior developers can also use this section to outline their career goals. When writing a summary, focus on the employer’s expectations from a software developer and explain how you can address those needs.

Explain your career issues, if any

If you changed jobs frequently, took other jobs besides software development, or had a long employment gap, address this in a resume or a cover letter. For example, if you took a year off work, tell the reason behind this and explain how you kept your skills current.

Proofread before applying

59% of recruiters reject resumes that contain grammar or spelling mistakes. Check the resume for mistakes before sending it to ensure that each word is spelled correctly and punctuation is consistent. Alternatively, hire a resume consultant to proofread the resume for you and hear helpful suggestions on how to better convey your experience to IT employers.

Creating a resume that wins the attention of recruiters is challenging, especially when the competition is fierce. As you are now aware of what recruiters are looking for in a software developer CV, you can adjust your resume accordingly and increase your interview chances. If you find it challenging to update a resume on your own, do not hesitate to consult a resume expert, as it will increase your chances of getting noticed by top IT companies. 

Our experienced writers can create a powerful resume suitable for each position. However, you may also request a specific resume depending on the job you are applying for, thus it will be tailored individually for your profession:

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