Wordle is a free, online tool that generates word clouds based on text a user inputs. This may seem like an obscure recommendation for a job seeker, but it can be immensely helpful in determining key words from a job description. It’s also a great way to visually see which keywords are most prevalent in your own resume (or cover letter).
In some cases, employers are using an electronic applicant tracking tool to determine which candidates are a good fit for their openings. If they are relying on keywords only, you can set yourself up to do better than a candidate who doesn’t do this type of analysis.
If you can cut and paste, you can use Wordle. It is an extremely simple tool to use. Once your content is pasted into the create screen, the tool analyzes the words contained in the text and creates a word cloud. The actual format of the word cloud is randomized, so it’s best to make a few changes once the cloud is created:
- If the word cloud doesn’t have the words arranged horizontally for easy reading, you can adjust the setting in the layout menu.
- There is also an option for maximum words in the layout menu. Depending on the length of the text you are analyzing, you may want to limit this to 25 to get a better look at only the most prevalent keywords.
- There are a number of color and font options, but those selections don’t have anything to do with word frequency. In your word cloud, the largest words have the most frequency in the text you analyzed.
Create a word cloud for each version of your resume, as well as each job description to which you are applying. If your word cloud has “marketing” and “project management” as the two largest words, you’ll want to ensure your resume word cloud also has those words in prevalent sizes. If you don’t see them at all, you will want to revisit whether you are really qualified for the position. If you still think you possess the required knowledge, skills and abilities for the job, it may be time to make some resume edits and include those missing keywords into your resume.
This tool doesn’t guarantee you will receive an interview, but it can come in handy as you prepare to apply for positions. By having a better understanding of the keywords (and skills) the organization is looking for, you can better prepare your resume and land an interview.
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