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Job Applications & Interviews

Getting a job is all down to how well you market yourself to potential recruiters. Knowing what goes into making a good CV or application form and being able to perform well at interview can go a long way to convincing employers that you are right for the job. On this page you will find online resources to support your job search covering:

Your CV

  • Your CV is your marketing tool. It summarises your qualifications, experience and skills, targeting that which is most relevant to meet the skill set sought by the recruiter.
  • You decide what to include and what to leave out, but it most cases it should be no longer than two sides of A4.
  • The layout is important - this is what first attracts the reader and then encourages them to continue reading.
  • Watch the video below for our 5 minute guide to writing a CV:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y0V4Nn9SoWI

Get our guide to creating your CV
Get our guide to creating your CV for Postgraduates

 CV Review

  • CV Workshops takes place throughout each semester.
  • You can get your CV reviewed at a CV appointment.
  • To find out more, book a CV workshop or find times of CV appointments visit: Improve My CV

Covering Letters

  • When sending a CV it is usual to enclose a letter, this pulls together some of the threads of the CV and allows you to highlight that which is particularly appropriate to the job.
  • Your letter should be word-processed and no more than one page of A4 in length.

Get our guide to writing covering letters

Application Forms

  • The application form is usually your first contact with a future employer, the forms are structured so that they can ask about very specific skills and experiences and compare them to the job requirements.
  • Make sure that you read the form carefully, and even photocopy it, so that you can practise before putting pen to paper on the real thing
  • Read it thoroughly so that you understand what is being asked in order that you can frame your answers appropriately.
  • Employers will often ask questions on their applications that centre around providing evidence for the development of your transferable skills.

Get our guide to completing application forms

Online Applications

  • The rules of preparation and completing an online form are the same as for the paper version, and the same amount of preparation and care is needed
  • Give yourself plenty of time to complete the form and allow for system failures, which are not uncommon
  • Make sure you read the instructions very carefully. Not all systems allow you to save your work and return to the form later and you may have to complete it in one sitting.
  • Access guides, e-books and videos that can help you develop your job seeking skills

Psychometric Tests

Many graduate employers use psychometric testing and assessment centres during the selection process. For more information on psychometric testing, have a look at this webpage, which contains a list of useful resources and information on how Careers and Employability can help you prepare.

Access guides, e-books and videos that can help you develop your job seeking skills

Access online films about assessment centres

Interviews

  • When you are invited for an interview, the good news is that they like what you have written in your application or CV and want to know more about you.
  • You will only have a short time to convince them that you really are the one they want.
  • Typically employers will only invite between 10% and 20% of applicants for an interview. These candidates are the best 10% to 20%, so the competition is greater
  • The key to a good interview performance is PREPARATION and then some more PREPARATION!
  • Careers and Employability also offers a mock interview service so you can practise - telephone askUS for details or Email.

Get our guide to preparing for interviews

Access videos on preparing yourself for interviews

Further Help: Electronic Books and Videos

There is now a range of e-books available that will help you with your job-hunting, applications and interviews.  Selected titles have been evaluated by Careers Advisers from Careers and Employability at the University of Salford to ensure that the material is relevant to your needs.

You can also view a suite of careers films which give an insight into assessment centres, the job application process and career planning. 

Further Help: Speak to a Careers Consultant

If you feel you need to speak to a Careers Consultant on a one-to-one basis regarding job applications or need advice on your CV, please book one of our current appointment options.  A Careers Consultant will listen to your ideas, help you identify your strengths, weaknesses and skills and assist you in relating all of these things to the world of work.  You can also book an appointment either via the askUS Desk or ring 0161 295 0023

Careers advice is also available via Advantage 'Ask a Question' and SKYPE.

Appointments are available for current students/graduates of the University of Salford.

Page Updated: 17th May 2016(HB)