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Applying for jobs

CVs, covering letters and application forms - ideas and advice

Examples and templates

If you don't have an up to date CV/covering letter, use our example CVs and letters.  

Other services with free resources

General advice

  • Always include a covering letter - this is your chance to grab attention and say very clearly why this organisation should employ you and how your skills fit their need. You've got about 20 seconds to impress the reader who is shortlisting! 
  • Employers often ask you to complete an application form rather than send a CV. Don't underestimate how long this will take to prepare. Online forms can take ages to load up depending on your internet connection.
  • Prepare your information for an online application form in a Word document and then copy and paste it in just to make sure you don't lose your work. You'll then have a copy that you can use when preparing for interview.
  • Always tweak each application to reflect how your skills can fit with the organisation you are applying to.
  • Many adverts invite you to phone if you have any questions. Take advantage of this to demonstrate your communication skills and stand out from the crowd - they're more likely to remember/notice you.
  • Look in the newspapers for stories about companies that are moving to your area and send them a speculative application.
  • DO Google yourself to check online information about you and edit what you can. Employers may well check so make sure that your Facebook and other social media accounts aren't embarrassing. If you haven't already done it, set up a LinkedIn account and make sure that it reflects all your skills and attributes.

Most common CV mistakes

These points may seem obvious but they still happen!

- CV too long - more than 2 sides is too much

- spelling mistakes and typos - a real put-off!

- not remembering to put your most recent experience first









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