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How to write a good application

Follow 5 steps and write an application that catches the employer’s attention

The application is where you can send a message about how you can handle the tasks and challenges the company is facing. It’s important to keep the company in focus . Always match your examples to the job you’re applying for.


Consider the following points when creating a targeted application:

1. Get off to a good start: Write a captivating headline

You can get off to a good start right away by capturing attention with your headline. Take inspiration from the job ad and what they’re looking for.

Avoid standard phrases like “Re: job as student assistant” or “Application for A/C administrative officer” at all costs. The employer generally knows that you’re applying for a certain position.

You can find inspiration online, but try to think about this:

  • Think in main messages – why you exactly? Can you say it in one line?
  • Start with your core competencies or what you can offer. If it’s appropriate for the job (and for you!), try a little humor.

Your subheadlines are valuable

Think about subheadlines to create paragraphs. You can use them actively and move them around a little. Subheadlines also help make the application easier to skim and more inviting.


2. Put spotlight on your motivation

of employers say that one of the insufficiencies thaty often see in the application is that the applicant's motivatin for applying is described too vaguely (Ballisager, 2018).


Passion is key. Capture the employer’s attention and make them want to read more. What is your motivation for the applying for this specific position? You don’t need to write that you’re interested in the job, but rather why you think it’s exciting – and what piqued your interest, e.g. the company, the employers or the department.

Remember: a company can teach you every skill, but not your passion.

Use your research

Use the knowledge you gained from your research. Remember to tailor target it to the recipient. It’s easy to fall into the trap of writing something along the lines of “I think it would be really interesting to get the job as xx, as it would develop my skills within yy.”

It should be something that is valuable for the company or demonstrates your knowledge, e.g. “I am impressed by your growth over the past 3 years – particularly because the market has been an uphill battle and it would be great to tackle this with you.” This gives the impression that you know something about the industry/market and that you’re well informed about the company.


3. Put your professionalism into play

of employers say that one of the insufficiencies they often see in the application is that it doesn't describe the professional match between the applicant and the job (Ballisager, 2018).


Create a link between your skills and the skills the employer is looking for. This obviously requires you to delve into your skills and think about what you can do and how you can use it in this specific position. Start here if you need help discovering your skills.

In this section you can explain how you meet the job requirements. Highlight the experience you bring to the table that is valuable in this particular job. It doesn’t matter if it’s from a student job or a project you did while you were a student.

Be specific!

Give specific examples of how you will create results or what you want to contribute to your new job. It’s better to choose 2-3 relevant skills and spend time putting them in the context of the company’s situation instead of trying to list everything that’s in your CV.


4.Bring out your personality

Talk about how you work and the personal skills you contribute with. You can also provide examples. Choose 2-3 relevant personal characteristics and spend time explaining them. Give some examples that create a picture in their minds.

Anyone can write “I am structured and detail-oriented” without it rally saying anything, but when you put yourself in context, it helps them understand. “I always sort my socks neatly in the drawer, just like I always sort my emails in folders and have color codes on my calendar. I bring a sense of order to my work, so you get an employee with attention to detail.”

You can also get into your personal strengths, how you are as a colleague, the working environment you thrive in or how you work best. You can do this in a section by itself, or put it where it makes sense. Get help with this under the section “Find out where you are strongest.”


5. Round off properly

End your application with a brief line where you look forward to a job interview. There are many variants of “I look forward to an interview where I can talk more about how I can accomplish what you need.”

Find a way that works for you. Try to be original but also accept that this might be difficult.

  Use your knowledge from your research in your application.

You can e.g. refer to the phone conversation you have had, or come with your suggestion of how you can help the company based on your research.

Next steps:

SDU RIO University of Southern Denmark

  • Campusvej 55
  • Odense M - DK-5230
  • Phone: 65502022

Last Updated 03.09.2021