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Common Job Application Mistakes

Common Job Application Mistakes

Common Mistakes on Job Applications

For many applicants the initial screening process is the most difficult part of the job application process. This leads to the question: how can I improve my chances of getting through this part of the process? How can I stand out? Among other variables, one of the more important pieces that matters is having an excellent application and resume. This part of the process requires remaining focused and paying attention to details, otherwise you are going to be among the candidates who are left out.

So, do not repeat the mistakes that many other candidates make, and avoid making the following mistakes in your job application:

Grammatical Mistakes

You believe that you filled that application and created your resume with concentration, but did you read through it twice? Or maybe three times? There are so many minor typos and grammatical mistakes that can lead the application to be placed in the trash. Recruiters and/or hiring managers do not have time to understand your mistakes and understand what you are attempting to convey. In this competition, you have to make sure that you are not making obvious mistakes like grammatical errors and typos.  If these are present at best they show a lack of attention to detail and at worse a lack of care.

Not Following the Given Instructions

If you have been filling many applications in a short period of time you may tend to not bother reading the instructions on every application form. This is where you could be setting yourself up for making mistakes. Every job application form comes with the instructions that are important to the company and by not following them, you are showing you do not value the company and your application will be received with the same amount of interest you took to the instructions.

Mentioning all Recent Job Responsibilities

Where there is a section just for that, and you are bound to explain what you have been doing in your recent experiences, don’t list all of the responsibilities you had in that position. For instance, if you are applying for a marketing position and your previous experience is in teaching, only mention the responsibilities that align with the position you are applying for. Telling them that you used to create learning plans may not have any relevance to the position you are applying for. Instead speak to how you were able to communicate the importance of the plans to the students, thus highlighting your communication and persuasion skill sets. 


In many application processes there may be time sensitivity to particular aspects (i.e. setting up a virtual/phone/in-person interview, providing your references, etc.).  No matter how busy you were, there is no excuse for turning in an application late or not responding to inquiries in a reasonable time. You may have lost the opportunity to make a great first impression. Remember the hiring committee does not know you, and thus have very little information to decide whether to proceed with your candidacy or not. They usually rely on items such as timeliness, filling the application correctly, and conveying the right information. This is an easy win that you do not want to cost yourself on. 

Leaving Blank Fields

Who likes to read a paper where the half page is blank and half is filled? When you are not filling in the application thoroughly, you are making them think that they might have entered useless questions and you didn’t bother to answer them at all. Don’t give that impression. Unless a question truly does not pertain to you, respect every field and answer properly.

Job applications are a very important part of the hiring process. You need to focus on it to make it stand out. In today’s competitive market you don’t have the luxury to ignore the basics of a job application.

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