Get That Interview! How to Beat the Dreaded Applicant Tracking System: A Recap of Molisani’s Presentation

Jack Molisani, professional recruiter and STC Fellow, provided information about Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS). An ATS, driven by artificial intelligence (AI) looks for wording from your application that matches the company’s job description and requirements.

Jack’s biggest tip was to stop applying through an ATS, but rather make connections directly with people. Start building your network before you need a new job. Here are some ways to connect with others:

  • Volunteer with your local STC chapter and/or SIGs
  • Run for office or volunteer at the Society level
  • Speak at the Summit or write for Intercom magazine
  • Local meetups groups (e.g., groups that need technical writers or JavaScript groups)
  • Build your virtual networks by joining LinkedIn or Facebook groups and posting in them
  • Speak at conferences, start a blog, post on social media

The goal is to be visible and memorable in your industry so that people want to hire you.

More information about ATS:

An ATS is driven through artificial intelligence (AI). The wording of your current and previous job titles must match the job you’re applying for. If applying through the ATS is your last resort, keep the following in mind:

  • Use short phrases
  • Keep verbs and objects in close proximity to each other (i.e., “wrote training materials”)
  • AIs can’t read tables, text boxes, icons, headers, etc. Make your resume as plain as possible. Keep your formatted version for the interview.

In short, people connections are better than relying on the ATS for a new career opportunity. They are long-lasting and will benefit you for years to come as you navigate through the industry.

Three Steps to Successful SME Interviews

Learn how to interview Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) like a pro!

Please join the STC-MGL and STC Ohio chapters for our next collaborative program “Three Steps to Successful SME Interviews” presented by Nicky Bleiel, STC Fellow.

Interviewing subject matter experts is one of the most important skills needed for success as a technical communicator. During this program, Nicky will discuss how to cultivate sources, write questions, and keep cool during an interview. You’ll learn what to say and what words to avoid–and how to conduct an interview asynchronously. Nicky has interviewed many SMEs, as well as tech comm luminaries (including David Pogue, Dr. John Carroll, and Kathy Sierra), and she will share her experience with you.


Wednesday, December 8, 2021

7–8:30 p.m. ET






  • STC-MGL or Ohio STC Chapter member: $0
  • STC student member: $0
  • STC member: $10
  • Honorary organization members (e.g., UXPA): $10
  • Non-member: $15

About Nicky


Nicky Bleiel is a Lead Information Developer at Innovative Systems. She is a Fellow and Past President of the Society for Technical Communication and has more than 20 years of experience writing and designing content for software products in a variety of industries. She has interviewed a number of experts in technical communication, including John Carroll, David Pogue, Kathy Sierra, and Nancy Duarte; and was Guest Editor of the all-interview “Legends of Technical Communication” issue of STC’s Intercom magazine. She is a popular speaker at many conferences, including the STC Summit, tcworld, WritersUA, CIDM, CPTSC, IEEE ProComm, and LavaCon; and has been published in STC’s Intercom, tcworld magazine, ISTC Communicator, and more. See for a list of her talks and articles.