So you have been on Learnist.org, hunting high and low for the perfect job for you, and have found a perfect opening, all you need to do to secure an interview is fill in an application form.
Many people are daunted by application forms as they lack the personal touch of merely providing your C.V, and mean you have to make sure that you sell yourself in the most efficient way possible, whilst fitting into the small space available.
The following tips should help you to get the most out of your application form.
1. READ THE FORM
Read it through first, thoroughly, and ensure that you have everything to hand that you need to complete the form, including any supporting information.
Always take a copy of the form, and draft out what you are going to write BEFORE you commit yourself to the form. This not only ensures that your content is going to look good and cover what the employer is asking for, but also ensures that you can check for spelling and grammar mistakes.
Related: Top Tips to Fill an Online Job Application Form
Ensure that you pay EXACT attention to the instructions given. If the form tells you to use BLACK pen, ensure you do! If it asks for BLOCK CAPS, ensure you use those too! Not only does this show you are capable of following instructions, but it may be essential if your form is being processed by computer.
4. REMEMBER WHAT IS ESSENTIAL!
Check the job description carefully to ensure that you have the ESSENTIAL skills as listed on the description and ensure that you offer details of these in your application form. organise your information into clear, concise points to show you CAN DO THE JOB. Remember, Skills ARE transferable. The tasks that you have performed in the past may not be exactly the same as those in the job for which you are applying, but the skills you use to carry out the tasks are likely to be the same. For example, you may be applying for a job in an office that requires you to have the ability to work under pressure and respond to the needs of the customer. Although you have not done this in an office environment you may have worked in a busy restaurant where you did work under pressure and responded to the needs of the customer.
5. SCREAM YOUR DESIRABLE SKILLS!
There will be a section which asks you to list your skills. Make sure to refer back to the job listing where it states what is considers to be ‘Desirable’ traits, and ensure that you can list the skills and experience you need to have. These may have been gained from paid work, voluntary or leisure activities, work in the home, training and education. Give examples if possible of ways you have gained these skills.
6. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION!
This section is where you can really sell yourself to the shortlister. Remember you need to show that you are a good fit for the position. Use this section to explain how you are as a character, and what persona traits you have that would make you perfect for the job. The best way to do this is to BE HONEST- after all, the recruiter may be better placed to understand how a personality will fit in to their organisation, however, reading learnist.org guides on Job Specifications may also give you a good idea what kind of people are needed in what kinds of jobs.
Be very careful to ensure that your Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar are PERFECT, after all, attention to detail is paramount, and making mistakes on an application form is unlikely to get you shortlisted!
8. TREAT IT WELL
Ensure to get your application sent off as soon as possible after completion. Don’t allow it to get bent, creased or otherwise spoiled in any way. Place it into an envelope (after taking a photocopy of the form should you need to refer back to it at a later stage) and get it delivered to the returning office as soon as possible. A prompt response may better your chances of being shortlisted, or called for an interview.
9. FOLLOW IT UP!
Don’t be afraid to follow up your application form with a letter, confirming receipt, a copy of which can be found on the Learnist.org –This may just help you to stick in the shortlisters mind.
10. IF IN DOUBT-ASK!!
If you are struggling with the forms, don’t be afraid to ask the help of a friend or family member, or an employee of the Jobcentre, Citizens Advice or even calling the company for advice on completing the relevant section. It is advisable to have someone read your form over before submission!
Good luck with your application!