Presentation on theme: "Applying for a Job. Unit 6: Applying for a Job Unit abstract The various methods of applying for a job differ in their requirements and the type of information."— Presentation transcript:
Applying for a Job
Unit 6: Applying for a Job Unit abstract The various methods of applying for a job differ in their requirements and the type of information requested of the applicant. The focus of this unit is for learners to:- understand how to apply for a range of job vacancies but they will only need to actually apply for one job to achieve the unit. Learners will gain an understanding of how and when different types of methods are used for applying for employment. They will find out how to gather the relevant information to support a job application and will also look at the importance of presenting job application information in an appropriate and accurate way.
Understand different methods of applying for jobs Different methods of applying: different formats for applications e.g. application forms, CVs, covering letters, applications via a website, applying in person; method of applying may be linked to the type of job e.g. requirement to provide covering letter may suggest job role requires good communication or written skills, use of online application form may suggest job role requires basic computer skills
Be able to complete a job application form Requirements for job application: different types of information needed for a job application e.g. personal details, skills, previous work experience, education and training; knowing which items of personal information to include and what to leave out e.g. age, gender, address, telephone number; knowing whether you are eligible to work in the country legally; recognising that certain items of information fit certain parts of the job application form; using templates and examples as a guideline
Be able to apply for a job using the appropriate method Apply for a job using an appropriate method: including only relevant and appropriate information; following accepted guidelines for the format and content of a CV, following accepted guidelines for the format and content of a covering letter
How to successfully complete application forms Before you start - some do's and don'ts DO research the company, the career area and the actual job for which you are applying. Make sure you can offer the qualifications, experience and personal skills that the employer is seeking DO make sure you are using the right form - some employers have different forms for different job functions. DON'T use a Standard Application Form or CV where the employer specifies that you should use their own application form.
How to successfully complete application forms - more do's and don'ts DON'T start to write on the form itself until you are perfectly certain of what you are going to say. Do your first draft on a photocopy of the form, to make sure that you can fit everything you want to include into the space available. DO read the form through and follow all instructions. DO use black ink - your form will probably be photocopied and this makes it easier to read. Tip: keep a copy of the application form, to remind you of what you said Tip: keep a copy of the application form, to remind you of what you said
Presentation The application form should be neat and tidy with no crossings-out or large splodges of correcting fluid. a hand-written application form gives a good impression, however If your handwriting is very untidy, it is better to complete the form in block capitals. Try to fill all the space provided for your answers - too much blank space makes an application look half-hearted If you have the opposite problem - not enough space to say all that you need to - use a covering letter to highlight the most important points and to say more about them. It is usually OK to add an extra sheet if, for example, the form gives two centimetres of space for "A-levels or equivalent" and you have other qualifications which involved a wide range of subjects. Include a covering letter with your form: this can be used to highlight your main skills and selling points
The Questions General points: Be informative, detailed but concise in your answers: give the employer the essential detail but leave them wanting to meet you to find out more! Keep in mind the qualities that the employer is looking for, and answer the questions in ways that will show that you have these qualities. Don't dismiss anything as irrelevant without careful thought. Students often assume that their part-time work as a waiter, shop assistant or fruit-picker can be of no possible interest to an employer. This is not so - employers can learn a great deal about your motivation and skills from jobs such as these - so do include them Don't make lists: "reading, cinema, sport" under "Interests" will not tell the employer anything useful about you. Give details of the extent of these interests and any clubs, societies or achievements related to them.
A “please see my CV” in response to questions on the online application is a recurrent problem. Recruiters are keen for students to also understand that the questions asked on applications should be approached as intensively as an interview question. Asda noted that despite receiving 4,000 applications online, many were of poor quality.
Competency-based questions These are the hardest part of the form for most applicants: questions usually begin "Describe a time when you …" or "Give an example of..." and asking for examples of specific skills such as teamwork, leadership, persuasiveness, etc. Describe how your personal planning and organisation resulted in the successful achievement of a personal or group task. Give an example of where others have disagreed with your views. How did you deal with this? Remember that these skills will be the ones that are essential for success with that employer – these questions are the most important on the form. They also now crop up in most graduate interviews and the best way to prepare for these interviews is to complete a few application forms with demanding competency- based (also called situational) questions.
Competency-based questions These examples could come from part-time work; clubs and societies; voluntary work; study at school; holidays and travel or personal and family experiences. Planning and organising a week’s independent travel in Scotland is as valid an example as a trek through the Himalayas. Compose a paragraph or so for each situation, outlining what happened, how you approached it and what the outcome was. The focus should be on you – even if the situation involved a group, interviewers will want to know what was your specific role in achieving the desired result.
Identify the skills you have gained 1) Identify the skills you have gained from: Work experience Sports teams Volunteering Hobbies Summer work 2) Research the role - find out what skills are required Make the connection between 1 and 2.
STAR approach One way of answering these questions is via the STAR approach - Situation, Task, Action and Result. It's a bit like a mini essay. the Situation and Task are usually combined and form the introduction, the Action you took, should form the main body of your answer, and the Result should be your conclusion - try here to be specific if you can: "We won the cup"; "Membership of the society increased by 40%"; "We raised £400 for charity". If you failed to achieve your objective say what you learned and what you would do differently next time.
Situation. How, when, where, with whom? Task. Describe the situation or the task you were faced with Action. What action did YOU take? Result. What results did you achieve/conclusions did you reach/what did you learn from the experience?
Referees These are not always very important to an application - some employers do not even take up references until after the final interview - but they are almost always expected on application forms. Generally, employers expect one academic and one personal reference. The academic does not have to be your personal tutor - if you feel another member of staff knows you and your work better, or will give you a more favourable reference, it is fine to ask them. The personal referee may be a previous employer (from a vacation or longer-term job), a family friend or a schoolteacher. Always ask your referees' permission to give their names and tell them something about the job for which you are applying (perhaps a copy of your application form too) so that they can relate their reference for you to that job.
Sell the skills you gained from casual jobs Many students feel that their casual shop or restaurant job is of no interest to selectors but this is far from the truth. Explain the skills you gained serving customers, working in a busy team, being tactful when handling complaints etc. Here is an example of how one student did this : "All of my work experiences have involved working within a team. This involved planning, organisation, coordination and commitment e.g., in retail, this ensured daily sales targets were met, a fair distribution of tasks and effective communication amongst all staff members”
Essential resources Websites Learners will need access to examples of real or simulated job application forms and examples of other job application documents such as CVs and covering letters.