Google Gets 3 Million Resumes a Year. How to Make Yours Stand Out, According to a Google Recruiter

Exactly what a Google recruiter and her team look for when sifting through resumes.

By: Betsy Mikel

Google reviews every resume it receives. All ~3,000,000/year of them.

If you want to succeed at Google, you either need a networking contact, or a darned good resume.

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Google has long held a top spot on best places to work lists. Getting hired there is no small feat.

Kyle Ewing, director of talent and outreach at Google, recently spoke with Fast Company about what her team looks for on resumes. Here’s how they analyze resumes to identify top candidates. 

Give your pitch.

Ewing is a fan of including a summary at the top of your resume. Keep it short. One or two sentences should do. This shouldn’t be a biography. Focus the relevant experience you can bring to the company that no one else can. Google recruiters look for candidates who not only have strong work experience, but also life experience. 

Know your audience. Do your research to understand what the company you’re applying to values most. Spend time on their website and speak with current employees. You can then craft your summary to show how they’d benefit from hiring you. 

Show who you are outside your 9-to-5.

Google looks for candidates who have passion and experience outside of their day jobs. Use your resume as an opportunity to highlight everything you bring to the table beyond strictly work experience. A few examples of what that could include, according to Ewing:

  • Volunteer experience
  • Passion projects
  • Side-hustle jobs

Go beyond simply listing these on your resume. Be sure to include why this experience matters and what you’ve learned. 

Add context to the numbers.

It’s good resume practice to include any data that showcases how you’ve moved the needle in previous positions. Did you save the company time, money, or manpower? Any numbers that showcase this should be on your resume. 

Data is good. Explaining why it matters is better. Include the story behind the numbers.

Google recruiters look for candidates who take it one step further and show the impact of their past work. How did you do it? How did it affect the business? Give context so recruiters understand why the numbers matter.  

Speak the language of the recruiters. 

Ewing says Google doesn’t use bots to screen resumes. A human looks at every single one — but they might spend six seconds or less

That’s why keywords still matter. Recruiters look for skills, competencies, and language that reflect the job description. 

Try this. Print out the job description. Print out your resume. Compare them side-by-side. Would someone who knows nothing about you think they have enough in common? Or, can you better highlight your experience to pay off the job description requirements?

This might all seem like a lot of work, but consider the alternative. Blanketing every open job that you’re remotely qualified for with the same resume isn’t likely to be a successful strategy. Investing the time to customize your resume for a job you really want is worth it.


The opinions expressed here by columnists are their own, not those of

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