How to Fill Out a Job Application Correctly

••• signing a contract image by William Berry from

The first impression a hiring manager has of you often comes in the form of an employment application. Filling out the job application correctly makes a good impression and improves your chance of landing a job interview. Follow some simple steps to ensure that your application is properly filled out, allowing you to get your foot in the door to compete for the position you seek.

Prepare to fill out the necessary information. Most jobs require similar information on job applications, which allows you to prepare yourself to provide such information. This information includes job history, supervisor names and contact information, educational information and references. Before filling out an application, Rogue Community College suggests that you make sure you have the correct dates, names, contact information and addresses for all of the typically required information.Also, make sure you have a blue or black pen with you when you pick up the application in case you have to fill it out there and cannot take the application home.

Read the instructions carefully. Some applications will include specific instructions on the application that require you to fill out the form in blue or black ink or list information in a certain order, according to Rogue Community College. If you do not follow the instructions outlined on the application, you may immediately find your application immediately discarded by the hiring manager. To avoid this, read the instructions carefully and follow them.

Print legibly. If the hiring manager cannot read the information you provide, you will not find yourself called for an interview. Print clearly and precisely in ink or, if possible, type the information into the application, advises New Mexico Tech Career Services. You may opt to use an erasable pen in case of errors but make sure the application is neat and spotless when you turn it in.

Fill out the application in its entirety. According to an article by Bob Lankard on the New York Daily News website, missed information can sometimes result in a hiring manager disregarding your application. Make sure you fill out every section and answer every question. California's WorkSmart website advises job seekers to write "Does Not Apply" in the space if the question does not apply to you, rather than leaving a blank space.

Attach your resume. According to New Mexico Tech Career Services, you should include your resume with the job application unless a job application specifically asks you not to. Your resume may go into greater detail about the success of your educational career and employment history, as well as explain any lengthy absences in employment.

Proofread your application. According to New Mexico Tech Career Services, misspelled words may disqualify you from the hiring process in some instances. Avoid this by re-reading your application and, if possible, having a friend read it as well. Proofreading the application also serves as a perfect opportunity for you to ensure that you have not missed any required information or left blank spots.


  • Before including someone as a reference on your job application, ask for his permission and advise him that he may receive a call from a hiring manager.

    Copy the application for your records before turning it in and refer to the copy before attending an interview.


About the Author

Alexis Aiger has been writing professionally since 2010 on parenting, relationship and mental health topics. She has a master's degree in mental health counseling from Walden University and a bachelor's degree in psychology from Portland State University. She has worked as a counselor and case manager for several years.

Photo Credits

  • signing a contract image by William Berry from