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Ready to apply for a job?
Filling out a job application is often your first step in applying for a job. Employers use it to learn about your qualifications and compare you to other applicants. Follow the tips below to make sure you make the most of your opportunity to get noticed by an employer.
When you’re ready to see what a real Job application looks like, visit Practice Job Application. You’ll answer real job application questions and get prompts for gathering the information you’ll need. When you’re done you can save or print your answers to help you easily fill out real applications.
Tips for filling out job applications
Follow directions. Avoid having your application rejected because you filled it out wrong.
- Read the entire application before you complete it.
- Pay close attention to what is being asked and how you are expected to respond.
- Do not write in sections that say “Do Not Write Below This Line” or “Office Use Only.”
Fill out applications neatly and completely.
Make sure that your application creates a good impression by answering all the employer’s questions.
- Before you leave home, create a personal data sheet. This should include all the information you might need to complete an application like names of previous employers, employment dates, addresses, telephone numbers, etc. Use it as you fill out the application.
- Most applications will ask for references. Add this to your personal data sheet.
- Do not use abbreviations, except for “n/a” (not applicable).
- Respond to all questions. If a question does not apply to you, use “n/a” to indicate that it is not applicable. This shows the employer that you did not overlook anything.
If you are filling out a paper application
- Make a rough draft. Write out responses on a separate sheet of paper before completing the real application. Or get two copies and use the first one as a rough draft.
- Write clearly. Use a black, erasable pen, and print clearly.
- Proofread it. Make sure that you have no grammar or spelling errors. If possible, have someone else review the application to catch errors you might miss.
- Keep it neat. Use correction fluid (“white out”) to fix minor errors, but use it sparingly.
Always list your “position desired”.
Do not leave this question blank or use “any” or “open.”
- If you’re answering a job ad or looking for a specific position, enter that job title.
- If you are not applying for a specific position, enter the name of the department in which you wish to work.
- Fill out more than one application if you are interested in more than one job.
Give a range for your salary requirements.
Employers may use this question to screen out applicants. It is best to give a salary range or list “negotiable”, even if you know the wage. This leaves you room to negotiate a higher salary.
Give positive reasons for leaving past jobs.
Choose your words carefully with this question. Avoid using the words “fired”, “quit”, “illness”, or “personal reasons”. Always use positive statements. Here are some possible ways to handle this question.
If you were fired:
- Do not use the terms “fired” or “terminated”. Consider using “involuntary separation.”
- You may want to call past employers to find out what they will say in response to reference checks. When doing so, reintroduce yourself and explain that you’re looking for a new job. Be honest that your termination hurts your chances of getting another job. Past employers will usually agree to use the term “resigned.” This response saves them potential headaches and even lawsuits.
If you quit your job, use the term “resigned” or “voluntarily separated.” These responses indicate that you followed proper procedures in leaving the job. If the application asks for a reason (or if you are asked in the job interview), you can respond as follows:
- Quit for a better job. This response includes leaving for advancement potential, to work closer to home, for a better work environment, or for a career change. If you quit for a better job, there should not be a long break in employment. Your employment history should support the statement.
- Quit to move to another area.
- Quit to attend school. If you use this reason, the education listed on your application and/or resume must reflect it.
- Quit for other reasons, such as took an extended vacation/sabbatical, did volunteer work, started own business, or raised family.
If you were laid off from a job due to no fault of your own, indicate the reason for the layoff.
Here are some possible phrases to use:
- Lack of work
- Lack of operating funds
- Temporary employment
- Seasonal employment
- Company closed
- Plant closing
- Company downsized
- Corporate merger
Watch for illegal questions.
Applications may contain questions that are illegal to ask before a conditional offer of employment. These include questions about:
- National origin
- Receiving public assistance
- Marital status
- Sexual orientation
You need to decide how you will respond. If the question does not bother you, answer it. If it does, you can use “n/a.” But be aware that you may get screened out by having too many of these responses.
Present a positive, honest picture of yourself during your job search.
The information that you provide is likely to become part of your permanent employment record. False information can be the basis for dismissal. Answer all questions honestly. Provide only the information that the employer wants, or that is needed to sell your qualifications. Avoid any negative information.
Target your qualifications.
Include only those that meet the specific needs of the job. Many applications have limited space to record your skills, experience, and accomplishments. To decide what information to include, research the company, its products or services, and the skills needed for the job. Attach a resume that details your skills, experience, and accomplishments.
What does current employer mean when applying for a job?
Means who are you already working for when ur applying.
what does “current title” on a job app mean?
always answer YES………… why are you searching? if you communicated your reasons for searching for a new job with your current employer you may find you don’t need to find another job. if it is work conditions, attitudes, growth potential whatever the reason communication can usually resolve issues that result in job changes.
if your reasons for searching can not be addressed by your current employer then it does not matter if they know and in fact they should be happy to assist in your move. this question has great importance even though some fail to realize it. nothing on an application is there to just use up ink. the fact that you have failed to address an issue at work is what this question tells the prospective employer.
how you communicate and how open and forthright you are says a lot about you as a potential employee. not wanting a current employer to know you are looking elsewhere raises questions about your honesty, maturity, commitment, professionalism and communication skills.
for those who answer they do this type of thing on all their applications simply tells you they either have to find new work regularly or have to apply at numerous places before they get hired…………….. either way not the best choice to seek advice from.
Job Titles – Examples for Your Resume & Job Search for 2022
But what if I told you that your chances of being interviewed depend on the professional titles you use, both in your resume summary and in describing your employment history?
Most people think that they should automatically jot down current and past job titles that employers have given them. False.
Writing targeted professional job titles is an essential step in resume writing. Let me elaborate.
What is a job title?
A job title is a specific designation of a post within an organization, normally associated with a job description that details the tasks and responsibilities that go with it. Source.
Professional Job Titles for Resume Summaries
The first instance that requires you to write a professional resume title is at the very top of your resume, in your resume summary. Bear in mind that this will be the first thing that someone will look at when reading your resume. So it had better make a good first impression.
List of General Job Titles
- Administrative Assistant
- Executive Assistant
- Marketing Manager
- Customer Service Representative
- Nurse Practitioner
- Software Engineer
- Sales Manager
- Data Entry Clerk
- Office Assistant
Your opening professional title should follow two guidelines:
- It needs to grab recruiters’ attention;
- It needs to include keywords for an Applicant Tracking System (ATS).
The easiest way to ensure that you are giving recruiters and ATSs what they want is to match your professional title with that of the prospective job. For example, if a company is hiring a “Project Manager” then you can just follow their lead and use this as your title.
Of course, you might feel like copying the prospective job title is boring. Some companies deliberately ask for creative applications from candidates, which makes you feel like you need to up your game and develop something more catchy.
The advice here is to not overthink the professional title. Keep in mind that you can use a few lines in your resume summary to let your personality and creativity shine through.
If you decide to diverge from the job title provided by the employer, be sure to use industry-related terms that will be common to recruiters.
Such language will not only be familiar to recruiters, proving you understand their needs, any ATS will also recognize these as keywords, helping you get past an initial automated screening.
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