Updated: Jun 20
How to apply for a job – APPLYING BY EMAIL
This post provides instructions on how to apply for a job using your email. The first email you send to potential employers is their first impression of you, therefore make sure there are no mistakes!
PROTECT YOUR IDENTITY
Only attach your cover letter and CV in WORD DOC, not PDF. Don’t overwhelm potential employers with attachments, they don’t need them. All your relevant information is on your CV.
CV scanning software can’t read PDF files, so it’s ALWAYS safer to send your paperwork in DOC format.
There are some exceptions though – If you are a graphic designer or in another creative career, you can also attach your portfolio in PDF.
Don’t send your identity documents, qualification certificates or other documentation.
Nothing else is required unless they specifically ask for it.
Focus on what you have to offer, not what you need from employers.
Don’t go into your personal circumstances, or the reasons you need the job – only tell employers why you are the ideal candidate.
I always advise clients to wait until the interview process to tell the employers what you need from them (such a sponsorship). Otherwise, you present a “problem” before you’ve even started and this will generally place you at a disadvantage over other applicants.
THIS IS MY OPINION ONLY AND OTHER PROFESSIONAL MAY HAVE DIFFERENT OPINIONS
If I’ve written your cover letter, you can just change the date and job details and it will be ready to attach. If you add content to your cover letter, make sure it is only one page.
CV / RÉSUMÉ
For this article, we are going to assume I’ve written your CV and it’s ready to attach.
There are plenty of articles on my blog about the criteria for CVs.
If you’ve applied for hundreds of jobs without a response, please consider a CV rewrite – it could make ALL the difference.
Make sure your email address matches your name. If you have a different surname, rather create a new email address and set it to forward all emails to your regular email address. Make it as simple as possible for potential employers to identify you and find you in their systems.
Do NOT use a work email address to apply for jobs, that’s seen as very bad form, rather create an email address at Gmail in your name, it doesn’t cost anything.
Don’t include anything in your signature except contact details, therefore: – No quotes – Do not include Bible verses – Never provide words of advice – No business logo
– Don’t include business adverts
EMAIL SUBJECT LINE
Say something very simple such as – Job Application – position of XXXX
Again, only focus on what you have to offer, not what you need.
Therefore, you only need a very simple note saying:
Please find attached my CV and cover letter in response to your advertisement in XXX. I look forward to hearing from you, Yours Sincerely,
Some employers may ask you to answer some questions. In this situation, ONLY answer the questions they ask, don’t go off on any tangents.
ATTENTION TO DETAIL
Read the advert properly and respond the way they require. You may need to read it a few times to make sure you are providing everything they request.
I think it’s quite acceptable to call the company in a couple of days and ask if they have had a chance to look over your application. If they tell you you’ve been unsuccessful, you have the opportunity to ask why you weren’t successful. Consequently, you can use that information to make adjustments, so hopefully you have more success next time.
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