It's time to begin applying for jobs in your chosen career field, and your excitement is palpable. You believe you have all the right skills, and surely anyone who receives your job application will be on board too, right?
Wrong. Unless you’re close friends with the hiring manager, you need to do what you can to ensure that your application enables you to put your best foot forward. To that end, we’ve compiled a list of four job application blunders to avoid:
- Having an Unprofessional Email Address – Your name is Lawrence, but your friends have always called you “Smilin’ Larry,” prompting you, years ago, to adopt the email address email@example.com. Before you send in your job application with this email address attached, stop and think for a moment. Would it be considered professional? If you didn’t know the person attached to the email address, would you take them seriously? The answer to both questions should be a resounding “no.” So what should you do instead? Generally, it’s best for your email address to only include your first and last name before the @ sign, and a number or two if needed, so firstname.lastname@example.org becomes email@example.com.
- Ignoring Typos and Spelling Mistakes - In order to avoid sending in a job application with these errors, proofread it carefully. On top of that, you might also find it helpful to have a friend or two give it a read as well. As they say, two pairs of eyes are better than one!
- Stuffing Your Application With Buzz Words – If you want your job application to stand out, it’s helpful to include as many action words as possible, but it’s best to avoid common application buzz words that everyone and your brother is probably also using. These are generally meaningless words and phrases like “team player,” “proven track record,” and “results-oriented.” When in doubt, show, don’t tell.
- Submitting an Incomplete Application – Before submitting your application, make sure that you’ve followed the potential employer’s directions carefully. No matter how much care you’ve put into presenting yourself well, it will all fall flat if you fail to provide the complete package of information requested.