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How and why are applications used?

Ap-pli-ca-tion n. [a document that highlights past employment history, educational background, and contact information]

There is a difference between going through the application process, submitting application materials, and submitting an actual application. The application process encompasses the whole employment process from identifying your motivations for working to following up after you have completed the interview steps. Application materials can also be broad to include an actual application or a resume and cover letter.

Pros and cons of the application form:

  • Identifies if you change jobs frequently and for what reason
  • Uncovers weaknesses (unlike other application materials such as a resume)
  • Requires a candidate to pay close attention to detail in order to complete correctly
  • Allows employers to review candidate information quickly
  • Faster to complete than tailoring a resume for a position
  • Can be kept on file by employers for months to be considered for other opportunities

 Tips for completing an application form:

  • Be sure to pay close attention to the application instructions
  • Have your resume, list of references, and contact information for previous employers on hand to complete the form accurately
  • Submit your resume as an attachment if requested to do so (save as a Word document in case the application system does not read PDFs)
  • Include a summary of qualifications
  • Use as many key words as possible that match the position's qualifications

Need assistance completing application materials? Make an appointment and select the reason code: Part-Time Resume Basics/Review.