Tips to fill out a job application form

Tips to fill out a job application form

Tips to fill out a job application form

Job application forms are common when you’re applying for work – especially in graduate schemes. Our guide includes everything you need to know about how to complete them.

If you’re looking for a job as a student or graduate, it’s time to meet your new best friend: application forms. They’re your chance to give employers a good overview of your skills and experience, and prove how perfect you are for the job.

But it can be difficult to know exactly what you should and shouldn’t include. It can be quite daunting when you want to impress and stand out from the crowd.

Tips for filling out an application form

Here are some more expert tips for completing an application form for a job:

1. Complete your application as soon as possible

It’s not unheard of for employers to close the application process early if they’re inundated with responses. So, get yours in as soon as you can. Of course, this doesn’t mean rushing it. But don’t leave it until the last minute either!

2. Follow the instructions carefully

No matter how many applications you’ve done, don’t assume you know what to do and can afford to skip the guidelines. If it’s a paper application (which is pretty rare nowadays), you might be asked to complete it in block capitals or blue ink. For online forms, there could be a specific way that it needs to be submitted. Treat every application you complete as an individual in its own right.

3. Check your spelling and grammar

Any silly spelling mistakes or typing errors could get your application binned immediately. But, many online application forms don’t have a grammar or spell check function (beyond the one built into your web browser, which can be hit and miss). So, always double-check everything. And if it’s an online form, make use of your computer’s spelling and grammar checker in Word (get a free version here). If this area isn’t your forte, ask a friend to look over your form for you before you send it off.

4. Make the information easy to follow

Recruiters are busy people. They won’t have time to sift through badly organized information to see if there’s anything good in there. Break up long paragraphs with bullet points if you can, and get straight to the point! Avoid using any jargon or acronyms that aren’t used by the general public (apart from in any competency questions). Also, keep your points succinct and concise.

5. Save your application as you go

If the job application form allows you to save each section as you progress, make sure you do it. There’s nothing worse than spending hours filling out the information and then losing it when your computer crashes. It helps to copy and paste your answers into a Word document so you can reuse them in future applications. But if you do, make sure you adapt them to fit. Remember, you want to treat each application individually!

If you follow these guidelines, you’ll be best placed for making it through to the next round of the recruitment process.

And then, you have the dreaded interview questions to look forward to. Remember that it’s all experience. Even if you don’t get invited for an interview, you’ll have much more knowledge under your belt for next time.

Courtesy / Credit: Save the Student

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