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8 Accidental Mistakes Made By Job Applicants

Written by: Sean Revell
Published on: 13 Aug 2014

interview errors


When you’re applying for jobs it can seem like you’re constantly doing the same thing again and again. All job advertisements begin to look identical, and you begin to feel like you’re writing the same cover letter and application out again and again.


Unfortunately it doesn’t always stop there – once you start heading out to interviews you’ll feel like a bag of nerves, and quite often – that can get the better of you  (and it doesn’t matter whether you’re applying for management sports development jobs or student summer jobs these nerves can still get to you). You’ll find start finding yourself making minor mistakes, without even realizing it. But don’t worry – you can avoid these mistakes once you know what they are!


Knowledge is power, so learn what these common applicant mistakes are, and you’ll be better equipped to avoid them in the future.


So what are these common mistakes? Keep reading to find out:


1 - Getting the hiring managers name wrong

First thing’s first, make sure your addressing your application to the right person. Sounds pretty basic right? But you’d be surprised how often people miss this out. If you don’t know the persons name, address it to their job title – or to the department, and give a brief explanation that although you tried looking – you couldn’t locate their name.


2 - Not tailoring your cover letter to the job role

Every cover letter you write should be tailored to a specific job role, not just a generic copy and pasted one. You can work from a template if need be (and you’re short on time) but make sure you mention the company you’re applying to by name at least – so it seems you taken the time to tailor it.


3 - Not updating your online professional profiles

When applying for jobs you’ll want to ensure you’re paper CV reflects your online CV too – and that they both reflect the same job roles and reflect your best work too. A lot of employers will Google a potential employee before inviting them in for an interview, so be sure your online presence is just as up to scratch as your offline one.


4 - Not spell checking your cover letter or CV before sending

This one is so easily done – but so many people skip this step and regret it instantly. It doesn’t take long to scan through a cover letter or CV for typos, so make sure you set aside a few minutes to do this. If you’re not the greatest at spelling – ask a friend to check over it for you instead.


5 - Forgetting to attach the CV to your email

Ensure once you’ve written that all-important email, that you actually attach the CV before sending! Nothing looks worse than a follow up email saying ‘Oops, forgot to attach my CV!’ it makes you look forgetful and a bit sloppy – before they’ve even had the chance to make a proper first impression. You want your skills to do the talking – not the fact that you accidently forgot to attach a document!


6 - Arriving too early to your interview

When heading to your interview make sure you don’t arrive to early. Quite often managers will have scheduled interviews at specific times, because of prior engagements of meetings. Which means – even if you get there early, there will be no one to attend to you. This can be frustrating for a hiring manager – so if you find yourself more than 10 minutes early, just grab a coffee somewhere nearby or even wait in your car.


7 - Arriving too late to your interview

Same applies for turning up late to an interview. Sure, sometimes you get unlucky with transport, but if you know the office is located on a tricky traffic route, ensure you set off in enough time to avoid that. Arriving late shows a lack of preparation on your behalf and even laziness – so you’ll want to avoid this at all costs!


8 - Wearing the wrong dress-code

Companies have HR departments for a reason, so if you’re unsure about what to wear for an interview just give them a quick call and ask what is expected. You can also ask the person who’ll be interviewing you too – and that shouldn’t be a problem. Remember (for good measure) it’s always best to look too dressed up, than too dressed down. So if you’re ever in doubt, make sure you look smart!