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Filling Out Job Applications

How you answer questions on a job application can help get you a job interview.

The most important thing to do when filling out job applications is to be honest.

It is also important not to give too many details about your offense and conviction. Employers want to know what is on your record, but don't need the details surrounding the incident(s).

Keep your responses to-the-point for a better chance of getting an interview. Then you can explain the situation face-to-face.

Most employers require job applications as a screening tool. They use them to determine if an individual has the skills to do the job.

Online Applications

Often employers require candidates to complete the job application the company website, using a job search website, or using a computer station at their location. This can be tricky for someone not used to filling out forms on a computer. Sometime you have a limited time to complete the online application.

Use this practice online job application form to help you get comfortable with the process.

Applying In Person

When going to a company to fill out an application in person, keep these in mind:

  • Be polite and respectful to everyone you meet — from the time you enter the parking lot to the time you meet with the potential employer.
  • Assume that you are being watched while filling out the application. Employers want to see if you seem like someone who will represent their company well.
  • Dress as if you were going for an interview.
  • Do some research on the company before going there. Then you can impress them if you are asked to interview on the spot.

Job Application Tips

  • A job application is like a first impression on paper or online. It's your chance to tell employers that you have the skills they need. Make sure this first impression is as positive as possible.
  • Read each question on the application completely. Only give the information that is requested.
  • Have a personal data record or a copy of a job application (220KB, .pdf) that has details of your prior employment, including dates of employment, employer's names, addresses, phone numbers, and contact information for your references.
  • Complete the application neatly and completely. Follow directions, and sign "release of information forms." Not signing these forms could be a red flag to employers.

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