Student Life

Game-Changing Tips: Ace your Job Applications!


Game-Changing Tips: Ace your Job Applications!

Graduation is just right around the corner! That also means the job-hunting season is almost here. Fret not because we are here to help you ace your job applications!

PRE-INTERVIEW

  1. Research the current job market
    • Get a feel of the career and the industry that you are planning to pursue. This will help you know what specific skills the employers are looking for, the current standard salary for the position you’re interested in applying for.
    • List down the companies you wish to send your applications too. iACADEMY has over 200 industry partners and you may approach the school’s Internship and Industry Partnerships Officer at the Office of Student Affairs and Services to help you find the right company for you.
  2. Create or update your Job Search profile
    • There are lots of common job-hunting website out there that are yours to utilize! Some of these are LinkedIn, Jobstreet, Indeed, and Kalibrr
    • Make sure that your profile for each website has the same information that is both up-to-date and accurate.
  3. Double check your social media account. Yes! The employers are checking on you!
  4. Build a strong resumé
    • If you know someone working in the company, ask for a recommendation letter. This will boost your application!
    • Have your ID photo taken. Slay your resumé with your professional-looking photo!
    • Make sure the info you include like your e-mail address and contact number are accurate. Any wrong data can negatively affect your job application
    • Gather trusted references for when the company does a background check on you. It could be your internship supervisor, an internship colleague, or the school dean who can attest to your quality of work and work ethics.
    • If you do or have done freelancing jobs, make sure to include that as well
    • Double check everything before you submit your resumé along with your cover letter


Simple resumé format:

  • Contact Information - this includes your full name, contact number, e-mail address, and home address
  • Work experience - Your experiences should be listed down in reverse-chronological order, meaning, your most recent experience should be the first entry. Write down your job description as well as achievements and contributions, if any.
  • Educational background - Just like your work experience, write this part down in reverse-chronological order, starting from your highest academic attainment. This should include:
    • Name of school/institution
    • Degree
    • Years Attended
      Tip: High school attainment is not usually required if you’re a recent college graduate or currently attending college.
  1. Showcase your portfolio

  • Specify what programs you excel in and programs you use in your craft
  • If you’re interested in a career in film or video editing, tweak your portfolio and include demo reels you’ve worked on. If you’re looking into a graphic design position, include all your offline and online designs or projects.
  • Highlight only the best ones! It can be tempting to boast ALL of them, but the trick is to not bore your reader (which may be your future employer or client) with pages after pages of your works.
  • Slayed your PBL (Project-Based Learning) finals? Bagged awards in and outside of school? Wowed everyone during your internship? Let people know!
  • Craft your ‘folio according to the role you’re applying for
  • Make sure to include projects, contributions, and achievements
  1. Write a compelling cover letter

  • Just like your resumé and portfolio, the cover letter has a huge convincing power! The cover letter is supposed to immediately answer the questions “Who are you?” and “Why should we hire you?”.
  • Make sure to highlight your strengths and skills
  • Proofread. Proofread. Proofread!

Simple cover letter format:

  • Contact Information - this includes your full name, contact number, e-mail address, and home address
  • Employer Information (if you have it) - this includes your contact person’s full name, designation, and company address
  • Salutation - “Dear Mr./Ms. X”
  • In the event that you don’t have their name, you can just type in “To Whom It May Concern” or “Dear [name of company]:”
  • In case you’re not sure about the gender of the contact person, just use “Dear [full name of the person]:”
  • Body of the letter
  • First paragraph - This part should indicate why you are sending them an email. Don’t forget to mention the position that you’re applying for and where you found the job posting.
  • Middle paragraph/s - This is where you sell yourself! Pitch why and how you are the best candidate for the job position. Remember: you need to convince them to hire you or, at least, consider you for an interview.
  • Final paragraph - Conclude your letter by thanking the company for the opportunity to write them. Include how and when they can contact you for a follow up regarding your application.
  • Closing - Good ‘ol “Respectfully yours,”
  • Signature
  1. Research about the company you’re eyeing. Study their culture, vision-mission, and of course, the exact location of the company - you wouldn’t want to be late for your interview! Most likely, the interviewer will ask you what you know about the company and how you found them and the job vacancy

  1. Study the job description well if it fits your profile. If you think it’s not the job for you, don’t send an application. This way, you can avoid wasting your and the HR department’s time.

 

INTERVIEW

  1. Arrive on time. It’s best to be in the location at least 30 minutes before your scheduled interview. In case of an (actual) emergency, inform your contact person at least 2 hours before your interview. Do bring a copy of your resume and portfolio
  2. Dress the part. Remember - The first 7 minutes is crucial and the first impression really matters It’s best to wear.
  3. FOR WOMEN, wear: collared or long-sleeved (make sure it’s pressed!) tops/blouse, slacks or pencil skirts, office dress (make sure it’s not too short!), closed-toe heels or dress shoes,
  4. FOR MEN, collared or long-sleeved (make sure it’s pressed!) tops, slacks, dress shoes or loafers
  5. Give a firm and warm handshake. DON’T sit down until you are offered a seat.
  6. Get ready to respond to the interview questions accordingly.
  7. Don’t disclose sensitive information about yourself. It’s best to avoid topics involving race, religion, and politics.
  8. If possible and applicable, give brief explanations, but avoid giving lengthy answers either. Tell stories that are ONLY related to the job you are applying for. Remember: The goal is to make them hire you and have the employer realize that you will be a great addition to the company. DON’T answer with a simple yes or no. DON’T get too personal. If you had a bad experience with your previous employer, DON’T badmouth or talk negatively of your previous employer. This will only be a direct reflection of your work ethics, not theirs.
  9. Don’t sell yourself short. But don’t oversell either. If the employer asks you about an experience or skill that you don’t have, DON’T lie just for the sake of getting the job.
  10. Ask the right questions. Job application is a two-way process. The employer selects you, but you also get to choose them.

POST-INTERVIEW

  1. Don’t forget to thank them for the opportunity
  2. Be patient! If your employer doesn’t get back to you in a day or two, DON’T panic! Remember that there are also other applicants vying for the job. You may follow up with the employer after 5 days if they haven’t updated you regarding your job application.

Ready to take on the world? It’s time to WIN THAT JOB! Good luck, Game Changers!

 

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