Most employers require applicants to complete a job application, even if they submit a resume and cover letter. Employers use job applications to ensure that they have consistent information for all candidates.
In addition, by signing a job application or acknowledging online that the information in the application is accurate, the candidate is attesting to their job and educational history. This means that you can be denied employment or fired in the future if you aren't truthful about your employment record .
Before you complete a job application, either online or in-person, it's important to have all the information you need to complete the application on hand. Review these job application tips to be sure you're prepared to submit an application for employment.
Job Application Tips
Review Your Employment History.
You'll need your resume or a list of your employment and education history to make sure that you're listing the correct dates of employment, job titles, and education. Your resume should match the job application perfectly - discrepancies will be noticed.
When You Apply In-Person
When you stop in to apply, be sure you are dressed appropriately. You may end up speaking to the manager and it's important to look professional, just in case you get an on-the-spot interview.
Online Job Applications
Job applications for many companies are available online. Other large employers offer a similar service. In fact, some employers no longer accept paper applications and require applicants to apply via their company web site or the site where they have posted job openings.
Follow the Instructions
Follow the instructions when completing both online and paper job applications. Check the company web site or the fine print on the job application form for instructions, because the most important rule to remember when completing a job application is to follow the directions.
Review Before You Submit
Thoroughly read the instructions for applying for employment - before you click the Submit button or turn in your application. The company will regard applications that are submitted correctly and accurately in a much better light than those from candidates who don't follow the instructions. In fact, some companies won't accept incomplete applications, so you'll be rejected before you even apply if you don't submit your job application correctly.
Be Prepared to Take a Test
Some companies test applicants for employment to determine if the candidate is a good match for the jobs they are hiring for. Companies who conduct pre-employment tests (talent assessments) are seeking applicants that match their hiring criteria. Review advice on taking employment tests, so you're prepared to respond to the employment-related questions you may be asked. Companies also may require applicants to do a drug test for employment.
Know How to Complete a Job Application
These step-by-step instructions below include all the information you need to complete an application for employment and tips and suggestions for writing applications that make a great impression. When you apply for a job you are typically asked to complete an employment application. You may be asked to complete a job application even if you have already submitted a resume and cover letter. That way, the employer has a record of your personal and employment history, verified and signed by the applicant.
It's important for your job applications to be complete, correct (no errors) and accurate.
Regardless of whether you complete an online job application or apply in-person, make sure you have all information you need ready before you apply for a job. Here is some of the typical information that you will need to submit with your application:
- City, State, Zip Code
- Phone Number
- Eligibility to Work in US
- Felony convictions
- Schools/Colleges Attended
- Graduation Dates(s)
Position Applied For Information:
- Title of the job you are applying for
- Hours/days available to work
- When you can start work
- Names, addresses, phone numbers of previous employers
- Supervisor's name
- Dates of employment
- Reason for Leaving
- List of three references - names, job title or relationship, addresses, phone numbers
- References don't necessarily have to be professional. If you have volunteered you can use members of the organizations that you have helped or if you are a student use your teachers. In all cases, ask for permission prior to using the person for a reference.
Tips for Completing Job Applications:
- Complete all requested information. Don't leave anything blank.
- If you don't know the details, bring the application home and return it when it's completed.
- Write clearly and neatly, using black or blue ink.
- Check for spelling and grammatical errors. Proofread your job application form before turning it in.
- List your most recent job first when completing employment information.
- List your most recent education first. Include vocational schools and training programs as well as college and high school.