We will want to interview the strongest few candidates but we can only invite people to interview if their written applications are strong. It can also be hard to give points to the best person if applicants’ verbal answers are not detailed enough at Interview Stage. We have therefore put together some guidance to make sure we see the best from every candidate.


The C.V.

A C.V. doesn’t need to be a complex thing. It does need to have your name, contact details, where and when you studied, any relevant qualifications / training and a list of your employers, job titles (or work experience / volunteering role) and the dates you worked there plus its a good idea to provide details for two people who have agreed to give a reference for you. You might also want to add sections eg achievements or hobbies if this allows you to demonstrate more of the relevant information the employer is looking for. There is no right or wrong way to present a C.V. but the employer will thank you for avoiding jargon and acronyms. Headings / bullets make it easier for us to read at speed. We have provided a template in word which you can download and fill in here: CV Template, but do not feel you have to use this. There are lots of example C.V.s online.


The Cover Letter

The cover letter is equally important. The employer will score each application by reading both the C.V. and the cover letter together, ticking off the things you have evidenced against the list of things they were looking for as listed in the person specification in order to decide who to invite to interview. Make sure that your C.V. and cover letter between them provide evidence of each of the things listed in the person specification if you truthfully can. If the detail is there, the employed can give points, if its not, they can’t. Most applicants lack something in the person specification so don’t let this put you off applying. If you do not have something the employer is asking for, are you willing to learn? Do you have evidence of something similar, or related, to show transferable skills?



Things like qualifications are scored at the written Application Stage and things which are best assessed in person are generally scored at Interview Stage.


Interview Stage

Sometimes an interview might include a practical task, written task or presentation if relevant to the job. If this is the case the employer will usually inform you when you are invited to interview. Past examples are a good way to gain points at interview. To prepare well for an interview, see if you can work out which parts of the person specification are most likely to be assessed at interview stage and prepare a few example answers to showcase your skills, experience and qualities, using the ‘STAR’ technique to structure your answers. We have produced a simple handout on the STAR technique to download here: S T A R


We look forward to receiving your application.
Good luck!