Job board sites like Indeed or SimplyHired make it seem easy to apply for a job online. They have a system that keeps your resumé in tow to readily submit. And many offer One Click Application services, auto-filling your personal information in the designated areas. However, I’m willing to bet you’ve never even received a response from one of these applications.
That’s why I’m offering eight Do’s and Don’ts to effectively guide you through the process of applying for jobs online.
Incorporating the company's mission and values into your cover letter and resume will give you an edge.
Second, checking out the company’s website helps you see if the firm is one where you’d want to work.
In order to optimize your resumé, you should match the keywords in it to the job description the company provides. Online tools (shameless plug: ones such as my company’s Jobscan.co) can help you identify the right keywords by copy and pasting your resumé and the job description into the site.
And include a link on your application! Many recruiters will search for it anyway, so making their job easier goes a long way.
You can include more information about your background and skills on LinkedIn than through a normal job application, so take advantage of this opportunity.
Although a cover letter is sometimes optional for an online job application, you should always submit one.
Doing so lets you relate to the company's values and mission and gives you a boost on applications that go through an Applicant Tracking System.
Make sure the application on the company site is the same as the one on the job board. This is especially important with job-board features such as “one click apply” or “quick apply.”
If you apply without looking at the instructions and miss something, it will look like you can’t follow directions.
Avoid typing lazily or in shorthand.
Not taking the time to capitalize the first letters of your name tells me three things: 1) You lack attention to detail; 2) You are lazy and 3) Working here is not important to you. You don’t want a recruiter to think any of those!
Auto-fill may also format the details of your job history in a strange or confusing way. Your “Position” answer might instead say which college you attended. Or prior employment dates might just show start dates.
Instead of leaving this to chance, fill in the details one at a time, double-checking as you go.
It can feel redundant to upload your resumé and then type in your work history manually, so the temptation can be to leave that section blank. Don’t!
On many Applicant Tracking Systems, the information typed in for job history is more visible than the resumé.