Application Forms

Application Forms: Articulating Your Experiences


If you have had a part-time job or voluntary position you have had work experience. If you have not worked before, do not panic; you can draw on your own life experiences!
The first step is to find out what the employer wants; do this by checking the job advert, job description, person specification, companies website and any other information you can find out about the organisation / employer.
Once you have done this, find the right vocabulary to sell those skills you have!
The skills table below shows typical words you could use:

Skill Type


You Are...

Interpersonal Skills

Dynamic, motivator,
influencer, visionary
Team work
Supportive, tactful,
diplomatic, tolerant
Customer Care
Welcoming, constructive, helpful, concise
Humorous, empathetic, deliverer, listener

Self Reliance Skills

Self Awareness
Perceptive, honest,
reflective, articulate
Self Promoting
Positive, proactive,
confident, ambitious
Entrepreneurial, resourceful, creative, disciplined

Business Skills

Problem Solving
Methodical, astute,
versatile, analytical
Project Manager
Reliable, punctual,
committed, competent
Business Acumen
Competitive, budgeter, enterprising, risk taker
IT / Computer Literacy
Progressive, adaptable, knowledgeable, specific

Specialist Skills

Foreign / Language
Culturally aware, written and oral expertise, expert in specialist fields

Transferable Skills 

Organisation, Leadership, Self awareness, Flexibility  Skills that you can use in different jobs, for instance communication, team working or problem solving.

Tackling Application Forms

Application forms are often used by employers for part-time work and by some larger companies; they aim to assess your skills, knowledge and qualities as a candidate against those required for the position.
Top Tips
  • Photocopy the form or print a copy off (if on-line) to practice on.

  • Read thoroughly and follow the instructions on the form before you start it.  Use black ink and block capitals where requested.

  • Ensure that your writing is neat, clear, concise and consistent

  • Accuracy is crucial – Make sure dates are correct and avoid gaps – employers want to see that you can follow instructions and present yourself professionally.

  • Complete all sections of the form; in sections that are not relevant to you write ‘Not applicable’ so that the employer knows you have not just missed the section accidentally.

  • Information under ‘education history’ and ‘work history’ should be listed in reverse chronological order (most recent first), by job title, employers names and locations. There is no need to give the full address.

  • Don’t use ‘text speak’ on the form.

  • Include buzz words that are used in the jobs advert / person specification / job description in your application to help highlight your skills and knowledge

  • Be selective – you don’t need to describe all aspects of previous jobs, but highlight the relevant bits.

  • Fit  all your answers in the allocated space (legibly) 

  • Double check what you have written and that you have ticked all relevant boxes and get someone else to check it.  Take a photocopy it so you know what you have written if / when you get an application form.

  • Don’t leave your application to late.  If there is a deadline for applications ensures you are aware of this, it may take longer than you expect to contact referees etc. Also take into consideration postal delays, bank holidays etc.


Sample Application Form



Any Questions?

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