4 Things You Need to Know About Sending a Graduate Job Application

So, the time has come to start applying for your first graduate job. You may be terrified but also slightly excited by the prospect of getting your foot on the career ladder – after all, you’ve worked hard to get to this point.

Unfortunately, the graduate job application process isn’t as easy as you may think. There are lots of pointers to consider that could make or break your chances of getting an interview.

With this in mind, here are 4 things you need to know about sending a job application:

1. Start the graduate job application process early


You may have an idea of which firms you want to apply to and the deadlines for each job application, so don’t leave it too late.

Some companies stop the application process once they have found the right candidate, so you need to be quick if you’re serious about the job.

If you’re planning on sending over your application just a few minutes before the deadline, you may lose out on the opportunity to show them what you’re made of.

You never know when you may come across other unexpected hurdles, such as a broken Wi-Fi connection or losing your important documents, so always be well-prepared ahead of time.

2. Tailor your CV to the graduate job application


To boost your chances of securing an interview, you should always try and tailor your CV to fit the exact job role.

When you read through a job description, look for keywords such as ‘highly organised’ ‘strong analytical skills’ and ‘flexible’ and aim to integrate them within the skills section of your CV.

It’s easy for employers to spot when the same CV has been sent to a variety of companies – especially if the content is generalised. So, always ensure it responds to what the employer is looking for within the spec.

Employers will appreciate that you have taken the time to read through the description thoroughly and are aware of what they’re looking for in a candidate.

3. Create a new cover letter for each application


While it may seem like a total nightmare to have to re-write your cover letter numerous times, it’s usually one of the deal-clinchers to help you reach the interview stage.

Employers want to get an idea as to whether you’re suited to the job and how your set of skills reflects what they’re looking for.

Do be aware that your cover letter shouldn’t duplicate your CV – you need to explain your skills in further detail and how your past and present experiences will set you up for the position.

Ultimately, each company is looking for different requirements, so it would be unreasonable to re-use the same cover letter for every application unless it’s the exact same job role.

4. Find referees

Some companies will ask you to add the contact details of referees to your application.

It is respectful and professional to always ask your referees if they mind being contacted before forwarding their details. There’s nothing worse than your chosen referee picking up the phone to an employer and admitting they were never asked. It doesn’t look good on you.

Giving your referees plenty of notice also gives them time to plan what they’re going to say about you. After all, you want them to give the best possible impression of you.

To make their job easier, you could give a couple of pointers on the skills the employer is looking for and how you have shown these in your previous jobs.

Hire grads and find graduate jobs today!

Whether you’re an employer looking to hire talented grads or a new graduate on the hunt for your dream internship or job – you’ve come to the right place. We’ll help you discover top talent or find your perfect grad role. Contact us now for more information.