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What you need to know when applying for a job online

Applying for a job can be overwhelming, but if you know what to expect and what to do, it can be a lot easier and a lot less stressful. 

What you need to know when applying for a job online

Friday June 08, 2018,

6 min Read


You should adapt your resume to the job you want – When you’re applying for jobs online, sometimes it is easy to use the same formula for each job and to just send out the exact same thing to every employer. However, because not all jobs are alike, the way that you apply for each of them should be slightly different as well. 

This means, that your resume should highlight your skills and experience that your future employer is looking for. It is also important to look at the keywords in the job description for the jobs that you’re applying for. 

For example, if the ad looks for a ‘competent writer’, then not only should you highlight your writing skills and experience, but you should use that phrase again somewhere in your own resume so that the employer knows that you understand what is required of you, should you be offered the position. It is also important to note that adapting your resume really is worth it statistically. 

According to Business News Daily, “Candidates with highly customized résumés are 10 percent more likely to receive a job offer after an application” so make sure you look at the criteria of the job description before you submit your resume.

Your cover letter should be clear and concise – Most jobs that you apply for online will ask you for a cover-letter which outlines your skills, experience and your education and how you would be suited to the role. 

But, although you may have a lot of experience in relation to a certain job and field, that does not necessarily mean that you need to include all of it in your cover letter. The key to a good cover letter is to introduce yourself to your future employer and to give them a bit of a background on your career so far. The best cover-letters are succinct and to the point, so you don’t need to ramble on in your cover-letter because you can leave that for your resume or your interview. 

Also, the way that you tailor your cover letter to the position you’re applying for says a lot to your future employer about your suitability regarding the position. Lauren Nelson for Business Insider Australia says “If you cannot communicate why your experience and skills are relevant to the job, I’m not sure you understand what the position entails, or that your background brings all that much value to the table.” So, as you can see, employers note your attention to detail through your cover-letter, which is why writing a good one is so important.

Keep all your social media appropriate and up to date – Because social media is such a big part of our everyday lives these days, it makes sense that people that are looking to employ us will check out our social media pages. 

Even though sites like Linkedin have been established for people to link up with future employers and people in their fields, people are starting to look at employees’ Facebook and Instagram accounts as well. Which is why it’s important to make sure your digital profiles are safe for your employers to view, because you never know who will be looking at your profile. 

If your social media pages are clean and appropriate, then they won’t have any reasons to not hire you, but if your profiles are bad, they may think twice. Another thing to remember is to make sure all your details are correct and that there are no errors before you send off your application. 

Go over everything before you send it off and make sure there are no spelling errors and that you’ve used the correct grammar, otherwise this may be a red flag for your future employer and can show a lack of care for the job that you’re applying for.

Apply for the jobs you want first – It’s easy when you’re applying for jobs online to just apply for anything that looks like it might be interesting or slightly relevant to your field. However, this is not always a good idea. If you start applying for jobs that you don’t really want, your chances of being hired for these positions increases and you may be stuck with a job that you don’t really enjoy or that matches your skillset. 

Although it may be worth your while to practice your interview skills and see what is out there, it may not always be the best idea to go for these jobs that you’re not really interested in. If you do get offered an interview for a position that you don’t really want, make sure you let the recruiter know in the nicest way possible, by communicating your interest in the company and other roles that they may have. This role may not be the right one for you, but they may be able to lead you in the direction of a role that is.

Apply for the job correctly – There are many ways to apply for a job online now and you’ll soon notice that some of them are far superior to others. These days, a lot of websites for job hunters offer a ‘quick apply’ option, which usually entails the applicant leaving their basic details and work experience on a job-search website, and then they pass on the information to the employer. 

However, there are a lot of things that can go wrong with the approach. As mentioned before, a cover letter is a great way to let your future employer get to know you, and if you use the ‘quick apply’ method, they may not get a good sense of you as an employee. Also, if everyone who is going for the job like you applies for the job, in the same way, chances are that you won’t really outshine anyone else who is also going for the role. 

If you’re one of the applicants who follow up with an email after their initial online application, you may be set apart from the rest of the applicants. Emails are also a great way to apply for a job, because you can send over any relevant material that you may not be able to add to your application, like previous work or a cover letter, so don’t discount email applications straight away, because they may work better for the type of job that you’re applying for.

Ready to start applying? Gumtree Jobs is a free job search engine that helps you find the job you’re looking for online, from a variety of different employers in different fields. Simply choose your location and field, as well as any other specifications like your salary expectations and job type, and the search engine will find you jobs that match. 

People who are looking for jobs can also make their own listings on Gumtrees jobs, offering their services to prospective employers looking to hire someone in that field. This type of job search engine is not only great for people looking for serious, long-term employment, but also for people who are looking for one-jobs or freelance work. 

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