Keys to successfully applying for jobs: And what to expect next

Published 4:47 pm Wednesday, June 21, 2023

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A job application presents a great opportunity to make a strong first impression with a prospective employer.

Job applications have changed as the utilization of technology has increased. Today the majority of employers advertise jobs online and conduct much of the initial search process through digital channels. According to Indeed, companies typically direct applicants to fill out a digital application through a specific website. Unlike a résumé, the job application is a legally defendable document. The information contained on it should be as thorough and accurate as possible. Some additional strategies can help applicants successfully apply for jobs.

Understand what is expected of you as an applicant. Carefully read the instructions on the application and any other supporting documents or information the employer may be requesting. Applicants should not miss out on a job opportunity due to a failure to follow directions.

Many employers utilize an applicant tracking system (ATS) to help whittle down the applicant pool to the best qualified. ATS may use keywords that coordinate with skills desired in applicants. Be sure to mirror keywords used in the job listing on your application to further your chances of the application being flagged for consideration.

An application likely will ask you to fill out fields regarding your work history. Refer to your résumé to fill out this portion. Some applications also have an optional tool that will auto-fill job information from an uploaded résumé. Therefore, it is handy to have an updated and proofread file available.

Employers are judging everything about you. Present a professional front by using an email address that is clear and to the point, rather than something clever or controversial. Avoid email addresses like or, opting instead for Do not give employers any reason to reject you based on perceptions from something as silly as a lighthearted email address.

Be sure to look over your application and make sure that everything is spelled correctly and that your grammar is perfect.

If the application makes it through, the employer may ask you to participate in either an in-person interview or an online interview. Some companies rely on a third-party application for you to upload a statement or answer pre-determined questions. Make sure all technology is working for these next steps, and consult the hiring manager with any issues. Always dress and speak professionally when doing interviews of any type.

If you are offered the job, the hiring manager may send further digital correspondence that will link to their on boarding system. This system will collect more information — possibly conducting a criminal background check — and ask that you fill out tax and payroll forms.

The job application process has changed in recent years due to an increased reliance on technology. Applicants should know what to expect to land their dream jobs.