With spring, my fancy turns to job applications.
You and thousands of others. Start preparing your campaign now. You can improve your chances.
Stand out from the crowd? Coloured paper? Fancy fonts? Personal delivery while in costume?
Aaagh. Guaranteed to fail. Instead, draw up your preferences: jobs, types of schools, areas you prefer or would avoid. Write a draft application for a genuine job and have it checked over by a senior colleague as part of a continuing professional development activity, including a mock interview.
Of course, read The TES regularly.
This is getting serious. Must get my suit out of mothballs.
Get it pressed to impress. That means the whole outfit: hair, nails, shoes.
Then prepare your covering letter, CV and the information for the application form. Preparation don'ts first.
use coloured paper, fancy fonts or illegible handwriting
include the wrong school or head's name
use dodgy grammar
rely on a spell checker
exceed two sides of A4 for your letter
leave unexplained gaps in your employment record
miss the official closing date
So what should I do?
ask suitable referees: a previous employer or tutor
follow the precise requirements of the advertisement
check to avoid cut and paste errors
include genuine extra-curricular interests
include SAEs if requested. They are an investment in your future.
Apply. You're certain to fail if you don't. Unsuccessful? Ask for feedback.
Act on it to improve your chances next time
Duncan Grey was talking to Bridget Watt, headteacher of Bolton-On-Swale Church of England Primary School