Academic common room
Struggling with a Job Application
codolod · 12/01/2016 21:46
I have recently found a job training opportunity which I feel would set me up for the rest of my career.
I have been working on my application and have come to write the supporting statement, but I am struggling.
I have looked online at example statements and how-to's and have got the general gist of what an employer is looking for, but I can't seem to transfer over the information I have already gathered.
I'm not very good with self-assessment, I have very little self confidence when it comes to reviewing my university time as I didn't do very well throughout, academically. I was good at the knowledge and the practical stuff, I just struggling with proving myself on paper! (I've been tested for Dyslexia and other things whilst I was there and the lady thought I was taking the piss and was very rude!) So, I come to feel that I'm not academically very good, however I know I can do this job and am definitely cut out for it!
I've got the list of each person specification, I've written an answer for each of them and I've ordered it in a spreadsheet so that I can move each paragraph around, but I can't seem to make it look like I'm actually good enough..
Anybody else ever had this problem and what did you do to help?
Thanks in advance!
BackforGood · 12/01/2016 23:44
Bumping for someone more knowledgeable to come along to help you.
I was going to say try to answer each bit of the person spec.
tbh, when I've read job applications I don't like loads and loads of other information - I like a person that answers the job spec and then perhaps thinks of one other thing about themselves that makes them stand out from the crowd a bit.
Margoonyawill · 13/01/2016 14:11
Best advice I can give: get someone in real life to look over the application for you. Either someone you trust and who knows what they're talking about, or even consider paying a professional to give you some help. It's really, really worth getting at least one other set of eyes on this -- if nothing else, other people (friends, family) usually find it easier to big up your achievements.
--I agree with BackforGood that it's best to be clear and concise and avoid the waffle.
--Imagine that someone in HR is going through your application and ticking off each point on the person spec. (sounds like you've got the sense of this already) so as much as possible stick to the same layout, headings and order as the person spec.
--Seems a small point, but really make sure there are no typos or other errors. Imagine the person reading the application is reading hundreds and that their temper is getting short and that you could really piss them off if the application is sloppy...
--Sounds to me like you've had a fair few knocks to your confidence so you'll need to work really hard to try not to be too modest or self-effacing. Just keep in mind that you are the best person for this job and all you have to do is clearly and confidently explain this to the people reading the application.
Wish I could be more helpful, but you really need somebody to look over the application with you. Good luck!
MarasmeAbsolu · 13/01/2016 19:54
my main suggestion for personal statements is clear emphasis on your key skills (ideally spanning the main aspects of the job, (e.g. leadership / management / comm / interpersonal / technical), what you bring to the mix, with a few chosen examples you are proud of to evidence this.
when I read a statement, I switch off at the first non-evidenced statement of greatness, and like best a focus, objective and enthusiastic one. If it conveys true passion, it's a clincher for me.
codolod · 16/01/2016 01:20
Thanks everybody, these are all great suggestions.
Margoonyawill - you're right, I really didn't do my best in University and suffered from stress, depression and gen. anxiety (all diagnosed, to anybody who may think I'm just excusing myself) and if affected everything - my class attendance, my concentration, my ability to complete assessments and revise, and that's only the academic side of things. When I discuss this with my boyfriend he helps me to realise that I'm much better at this than I give myself credit for.
I have booked a skype meeting with a university careers advisor - luckily I can use their service for life, so that's a huge help for me!
My boyfriend's dad will also look over it for me as he's good with grammar, and my friend who works in university admissions has also offered.
MarasmeAsbolu - thanks for that tip - I will definitely use that when putting my statement together!
I've actually got loads of help and I'm really lucky, if I don't get this placement I think it will most likely be because it's just not meant to be, not my application, in which case I shall move on and try again somewhere else!
codolod · 16/01/2016 01:24
Going back over it, I see now that my statements were very much:
- Meet requirement X
"I meet requirement X because of this job"
I need more detail - proof, specifics, I've thrown some grades in there (the good ones which resulted from group work, mind) and listed a few relevant blogs I follow. it's coming together, slowly, I'm just glad I've got until the end of the month!
Thanks again, no doubt I'll be back if I hit another hurdle
codolod · 17/01/2016 17:39
OK I've hit a hurdle.. or three -
I have 1277 words in my max. 100 word supporting statement. (Obviously I'll be needing to reduce this down a bit but I'm writing first and editing later)
The list says to 1) how that you meet all personal requirements; 2) Briefly outline how your qualifications and experience make you a suitable candidate for this vacancy; 3) Why you are interested in applying for this training position; 4) What you like to do in your spare time and what interests you have
1 and 2 are sort of answered together,
I've already sort of touched on 3 and 4 in answering the other parts, do you think if I just elaborate on those points that it will be ok, or do you think I need to answer them separately in the spirit of allowing the reader the more easily tick them off? I would probably end up repeating myself a little if I did this, which I know is a definite no.
Secondly, one of the personal specifications i is "must be willing to live in shared accommodation" and another is "must have access to personal transport". Would I just answer these literally as a "yes, I can do those things" or do you think I would need to elaborate on those? They seem very specific for elaboration.
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