Capp’s five-step approach to strengths-based recruitment

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top tips

Stand Out on Your Application Form

Posted by: Sue Harrington, as part of School Leavers’ Fortnight

 

When applying for a job, there are two important opportunities for convincing a potential employer to select you over other applicants: the application form and the interview.

 

Many application forms now ask applicants to explain why they should be considered for the job – which is good news because it is your chance to sell yourself, make a good impression and secure an interview.

 

This means that completing an application form is not simply an administrative task – it’s an important part of the recruitment process.

 

Here are my top tips on how to maximise your impact:

 

1. First impressions really matter – make sure you complete the form fully and accurately and check your spelling. If you can’t complete the form online, keep your handwriting as neat as possible.

 

2. Identify your strengths by completing Capp’s Realise2 strengths assessment (www.realise2.com) and apply them to the requirements of the job. For example, strengths such as Detail, Order and Planful would be very useful in a job that involves project management, while Service, Explainer and Listener would help you in a call centre role.

 

3. Describe your strengths in relation to the job responsibilities. For example, “I am a good listener and I am able to explain complex ideas to others clearly”. Better still, illustrate with an example – perhaps you ran the debating society or were part of a mentoring programme at school.

 

4. Be specific when you are asked to explain why you should be considered for the job. Build your answer around the job description and the person attributes to show how you fit the requirements – using your strengths examples to illustrate the point.

 

5. Include anything that demonstrates your initiative, motivation and employability – as well as your qualifications. This includes any work experience, paid or voluntary; other positions you have held, such as a team captain at school; hobbies and interests, particularly where you have learnt new skills (e.g., sailing, rock climbing or writing apps).

 

6. Stand out – what have you done that is different to the norm, that demonstrates that you have what it takes to succeed in this role, and showcases your future potential by highlighting your past achievements?

 

7. Seek feedback from other people and ask them to check your application form for errors and improvements before you send it.

 

By adopting these strategies, you increase your chances of being invited for an interview.  They won’t be enough to get you the job – that’s down to you, after all – but they will take you one step further along the process.

 

And remember, all you need to do is ensure you get to the next stage each time. At the final stage, of course, if you’re successful, you’ll be offered the job!

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Celebrating Female Leaders Month

Posted by: Nicky Garcea and Alex Linley (as part of Capp’s Female Leaders Month, June 2012)

 

As we come to end of Female Leaders Month we hope you have enjoyed our blogs. We know from your feedback that the role of harnessing your power bases, realising your strengths and overcoming subliminal sexism has struck chords with many of you.

 

Our commitment to developing the Generation F of future female talent does not end here.

 

We are delighted as this month draws to a close to be able to share with you the launch of our Female Leaders Programme. This programme has been designed to harness the unique and impactful combination of strengths and power base development, helping female leaders to maximise the opportunities that are open to them by building on the capabilities they have.

 

In July, we will also be launching our Women in Leadership survey, designed to explore more about many of the issues that have been raised by our blogs and your comments throughout Female Leaders Month. We hope you will join us in completing this survey and help us further shape the women in leadership debate.

 

To receive regular female leadership updates, you are also invited to  follow Nicky on Twitter, @NickyGarcea

 

As we sign off for the month, we have 7 Top Tips for Female Leaders, that summarise the advice we have shared across Female Leaders Month:

 

1. Take confidence from your strengths: know what you’re good at and what energises you – and use it!

 

2. Maximise your unrealised strengths: align them to your future career goals and aspirations

 

3. Harness your power: influence decisions and outcomes to help you get what you want

 

4. Be courageous: with your choice of mentor and sponsor, don’t shy away from seeking someone with status

 

5. Think before you speak: eradicate unnecessary apologetic language from your daily interactions and particularly in meetings

 

6.  Tilt more than balance: say yes to the things that draw on your strengths and reduce the time  you spend on non-critical weaknesses

 

7. Hold out your hand: through your behaviours and actions, you can play your part to open the door for the female talent of tomorrow.

 

We hope that the themed blogs of Female Leaders Month have inspired you to do more to celebrate and develop female talent. Watch out for future blogs on these issues on The Capp Blog, and please share your comments and experiences by using the Comment function below.

 

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