If you've found a job which attracts you need to be making a serious and focused application. Employers use application forms to select candidates to interview but also to exclude them from the process. At this stage there is little room for sentiment so your application has to hit the spot. The employer will be looking for evidence that you have the competencies and skills required. For you it’s a great opportunity to show your potential.
Although a daunting process the questions within the application form and the job/person specification will give you clues and help to structure your thinking. Below are some general thoughts to get you started.
- Research the company in detail….websites, brochures, news articles.
- Read the job and person specification thoroughly and make sure you understand it.
- Think about your evidence matches the person specification and present it succinctly so that your messages are clear and easy to read.
- Read the form very carefully following the instructions to the letter - if it says use black ink then do so.
- Photocopy the form and practice. Can you fit in everything you want to say by using the space effectively? Too much blank space can suggest a lack of effort although be careful not to cram in too much making it hard work to read.
- Allow yourself time to plan and complete the form and a quiet environment to work in.
- Continually re-check the job and person specification. Are you providing relevant information and examples.
Before you submit make sure:
- You have carefully followed the instructions.
- You have actually answered the questions. Have you used a range of your experiences in providing your evidence.
- You have said all you want to say in a way that is clear and easily understood.
- Has it been proof-read by yourself and someone else… neat, tidy with no errors?
- Keep a copy… remember what you have told the employer!