Job applications are an important piece of the application process. Many employers use them to screen applicants. Other employers use them simply as the paperwork required for employment and may require that you complete them when you come in for an interview. Or they may require that you complete their online application. Here are some things to remember:
Bring all of the information with you. Since some of the information required for an application may not be listed on the resume it's best to have a separate document which includes all of your employment and education history. Then it is simply a matter of transferring the data to the application. Most applications will want addresses, telephone numbers, names of supervisors, dates of employment as well as salary. You don't want to be thumbing through a phone book or feverishly looking up the information required.
Read and follow instructions carefully. Always take a few minutes to review the entire application. Employers may check to be sure that you are capable of following written instructions.
Complete the application as neatly as possible. Neatness and legibility count; the application is a reflection of you. Be sure to use only a blue or black pen – an erasable one is preferable.
Don't leave any blanks. Employers want the same information from all applicants. If there are questions that don't apply to you, simply respond with 'not applicable' or 'n/a'. Do NOT write 'see resume' when completing the application – this is a huge error when completing the application and can get you screened out of the interview process.
Do not put specific salary requirements. It is way too early in the process to allow yourself to be identified by a specific salary request. It's best to say 'open' or 'negotiable.'
Proofread your application before submitting it. Once you've completed the application, sit back and take a few minutes to thoroughly proofread the document, checking for all errors – spelling and grammar.
Click here for more detailed information on completing applications.