How Do You Fill Out a Job Application?

Read these tips for completing your next application.

Sometimes the job search process can seem so overwhelming that it’s hard to know where to start. One of the most basic parts about applying for work is completing the job application.


Why can’t I just submit my resume?

Filling out a job application can feel repetitive if you’ve already created a resume that details your skills, experience, etc. So why do businesses require it? One reason is that it helps them screen potential applicants by making sure they ask everyone the same questions. Whereas each resume is unique and provides only the information you choose, an application collects the same information from each candidate.


Be thorough.

Different businesses have different applications. Be sure you read through the application to make sure you understand the directions and questions before you begin. Occasionally, applications may give a specific instruction to make sure the candidate can understand and follow directions. This could be something as simple as, “Please complete using only blue or black ink.” Make sure you are paying attention. Also, don’t skip any questions. If a question doesn’t apply to you, put “not applicable” instead of leaving it blank.


Be honest.

Answer questions truthfully. HR managers will typically verify your past work experiences, employers, and dates, so it’s best to be honest. However, be aware of your word choice when answering. For instance, if the application asks why you left your previous job and you were laid off due to downsizing, you could simply write, “job ended.” Be positive in your application, and keep in mind that you can always provide the company with more details during an interview.


Be prepared.

If you’re looking for work, chances are you’ll have to fill out multiple job applications. Take some time to write down your job history, dates, past employer information, references and contact information, and anything else you may need on an application. This could save you time instead of having to look up details again and again.


Review before you submit.

After you complete your application, look it over to make sure you answered all the questions. Check for grammar and spelling errors to correct. If possible, have a friend review it as well. Try to look at the application as the employer would see it. Do you look like a good candidate on paper? Would you hire the person on this application?


If you’re interested in working with Penmac, you can complete a job application online. Or, if you’d like help with your application, stop by your nearest office and a staffing specialist there would be happy to help you complete it. Click here for more information about what to expect when you apply for work at Penmac.