These days, a good deal of your job search is going to happen online. You’ll still have to navigate the more traditional venues, too, like networking, but everything happens on the internet. So, in addition to looking for job postings on employer websites, and looking at online job boards, you’ll also likely be filling out online applications. Here are some tips to help you get through this.
Remember your login
Lots of sites will have you set up a profile. If you do, remember your login information. Use the same email address that you’re using for your job search (something professional, if you’ll recall), and maybe use the same username for all applications sites. You’ll also have to balance password security against being able to remember maybe dozens of passwords, so I’ll let you figure out where you want to land on that spectrum.
Have all your documentation ready, like a copy of your resumé. That way the info you need is at hand. You can also use a working document that you save constantly so if something goes wrong, then you just need to copy and paste. Read the whole application first, so that you know what you’ll be asked. Maybe create a plaintext version of your resumé for cutting and pasting.
Before you hit send, make sure you look for errors or unanswered questions. And save a copy of your application, too. Use cut and paste.
Keep track of characters.
Some applications will have character limits on answer fields. Make sure you’re keeping track of them. You need to make sure you can fit any relevant information in the space allowed.
Even if you’ve just spent a half hour typing in your career history, many sites will want you to upload your resumé, and maybe a cover letter. If you do, make sure it’s a PDF so your formatting remains consistent. And make sure the file name is relelvant (i.e., Firstname Lastname Resume.doc.)
You live in the future! Be ready to find work online. And, as always, if you need help, come see us at WIL.