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Application Tips

1. You probably know far more than you think you do. Be confident and do not play down your skills.

2. Really read all of the info on the job. Then read it again. Maybe read it a third time for luck. And then read up about us.

3. Look at the essential requirements. These are not optional: if you don’t fit the list, you’re not coming in. If you fit, tell us!

4. Most things count as relevant experience. But not everything.

5. Make sure your CV fits the role. What is in it for us?

6. Make it easy for the reader

7. Do a spellcheck. Remember to check your grammar.

8. Be unforgettable, but don’t be cheesy

9. You are interviewing us too, but do practise the interview

10. Don’t Miss the Deadline!

1. You probably know far more than you think you do. Be confident and do not play down your skills.

Don’t over-do it though! If you’re good enough to run a small country and win a Nobel prize for your writing /science/peace skills, we might decide you're over-qualified for this role. But only just.

2. Really read all of the info ont the job. Then read it again. Maybe read it a third time for luck. And then read up about us.

Make sure you have researched what we do, and possibly what similar organisations do. You won't look like you've done your research if you say that you want to work in the Arts....

Think about why you’d want to work for us. It probably helps if you know what the Power to Create means to you, and it’d be great if you can explain it to us!

Make sure you know all the relevant jargon and what it means. For example, social network analysis does not mean analysing facebook.

3. Look at the essential requirements. These are not optional: if you don’t fit the list, you’re not coming in. If you fit the list, tell us!

If you are perfect for the job, make sure your application tells us that. Even if it seems obvious that you can do something, if the job advert states “Intermediate working knowledge and experience of MS Office applications”, somewhere in your application you need to address that.

It is the interview panel's job to go through all the applications and sort them into three piles: 1. "Has all essential requirements"; 2. "Has all essential requirements PLUS desirable requirements"; 3. "Does not fulfil criteria". You don’t want to be in the third pile because of something as stupid as not having made your amazing Microsoft Word skills obvious.

4. Most things count as relevant experience. But not everything.

Some examples:

“Ability to work flexibly within a busy team environment”: when have you had to multitask and negotiate things with other people? This could be a sports team; a busy home-work balance; or a summer job or volunteering role.

“Ability to communicate clearly and concisely with people at all levels”: In these roles you may need to be able to speak to everyone from vulnerable adults in community project settings, to young people, to policy makers. When have you had to make sure a message makes sense to loads of different people? This could be teaching; any customer facing role such as working in a café; or informal things like being good at giving directions, or being the kind of person who often ends up as a go-between in friendship or family arguments.

“Some experience of different research methods”: Are you a Google search whiz, have you ever researched your family tree, did you have to go interview people for your Geography A-level? These are different types of research and we need to know if you have done them already.

5. Make sure your CV fits the role: what is in it for us?

One size does not fit all when it comes to CVs. Make sure all of the information is relevant to this role. Your CV and cover letter need to show us why your skills are useful to us. Make sure your cover letter explains “I have (x skill) that you need. This is shown by (x piece of evidence) where I did (x thing) really really well. This will help you in (this way)."

Make sure the finished product does not feel like a cut and paste job! 

6. Make it easy for the reader.

We get loads of applications: apparently on average we spend just one minute on each CV.

Clear formatting!

Loads of text is scary. Keep it simple, concise and to the point.

Attachments. Make sure you have attached them. So, CV, cover letter AND anything else we might have asked you for, check!

7. Do a speelcheck and then again. And then check you’re grammar. (Yes, those mistakes were deliberate. Did you notice?)

Read over it. It is always useful to also get someone else to read over your writing to ensure that it is understandable.

8. Be unforgettable, but don't be cheesy.

Trying to be funny often doesn’t work, as there really is no accounting for taste. We do, however, want to see how you are creative and different. The cover letter is your chance to tell why we can’t do without you. Surprise us.

9. You are interviewing us too, but do practise the interview.

The interview is your chance to win us over. Practise some answers: we’ll want extra details based on the essential criteria and your application documents. If any of the questions seem difficult don’t worry: we just want to know how you think.

What kind of things would you like to know about us?

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to either contact us before your application, or to ask them at interview.


10. Don’t Miss the Deadline!

Nothing says disorganised like missing the deadline… and we do not accept late applications. 

Good luck!