7 Tips on Applying for a Job ...

I think the job market gets tougher each year. Applying for jobs takes a lot of work. When I applied for a job while I was in high school, all I had to do was drop off an application and wait for a phone call. The older I've gotten, the more in-depth the jobs have been and there are more parts to the application process. I have to have a resume that is up to snuff, valid references, time to do an interview with my potential employer, and sometimes previous experience is required. If you are thinking about dropping off applications for jobs, then take a look at the following tips before you do so. Here are 7 tips on applying for a job you might find useful.

7. Double Check All Your References

Just because you put someone down as a reference once doesn't mean you should assume it's alright to put them down on every application you fill out. Double check with the people you have listed as references. Do this to not only make sure it's still alright for you to use them as references, but also so you can check to see if the information you have for them is still correct.

6. Have an Updated Resume on Hand at All Times

A lot of time can be lost when you have to come up with a resume from scratch. I try to keep mine updated as much as possible. I add new things to it all the time. If I take a new education course, it gets added to my resume. If I gain experience somewhere along the way, I make note of this on my resume. I tend to use my resume as a way to keep track of all I've done. I find it much easier to make small adjustments when I can remember them. If I wait a couple of years to make these alterations to my resume, I'm afraid I'll forget something.

5. Practice Doing an Interview

I used to get nervous in front of large groups, but thankfully never in front of a single stranger. I always did well in interviews, whether they were in person or over the phone. Do you find yourself stammering when asked a question? Do you break out in a cold sweat at the thought of doing an interview? Then you might want to see if a friend will help you act out a mock interview. You could borrow a video camera to tape your pretend interview and then watch it to see what changes you might need to make.

4. Fill out the Application as Honestly as Possible

If you fudge a little on your skills and then are asked to display your supposed skills when you become hired, what are you going to do then? Be honest when filling out your job application. Most employers are lenient on dates, but they expect you to be truthful about your education, past experience, and job skills. Bogus references are also a big no-no.

3. Be Polite

This would be a good time to remember your manners. I know I tend to get lax when I'm around friends. I've caught myself asking my son to do something and completely forgetting to add the word 'please' in there. Remember the words you learned as a child and use them often; please, thank you, yes, and no. Stay away from slang affirmatives such as 'yep' and 'yeah'. Use 'Yes, Ma'am' and 'Yes, Sir' when addressing people conducting the interview, as well as their staff if there are any.

2. Speak Clearly and Remained Focused

Very few employers hire people without conducting an interview. When you go in for the interview, be sure to speak slowly, don't giggle a lot (nervous giggles are the worse, believe me!), make eye contact, and try to remember why you are there in the first place. If you can make yourself heard and stay focused on the interview being conducted, then you should be able to handle anything thrown your way.

1. Have Questions to Ask Your Future-employer

It's always a good idea to write down at least 4 or 5 questions that you'd like to ask the person you might be working for in the future. Make sure they are questions that show you are legitimately interested in this job. You will probably have a better chance at making the top of the list if you can show you care about the job you are applying for and not simply doing it for the money.

These 7 tips on applying for a job should get you started in preparing for an upcoming job you've recently thought about applying for. What tips do you have for someone who is thinking about applying for a new job?

Top Photo Credit: J.^2 Very Busy