Steps to take when applying for jobs
Follow these steps to increase your chance of a successful job application.
Read CareersNZ’s Job Hunters’ eBook for tips on finding employment in the digital age – and learn how to turn rejection into successful job hunting.
1. Attend a seminar: CV 101 - Get Started on Your CV and Cover Letter
Learn the tools you need to put together effective CV and cover letters.
CV 101 seminars:
- Run weekly during semester time.
- Have limited places available in each session – book in to secure a spot!
View and book times through OtagoCareerHub (Login required).
2. Attend a tutorial: CV 102 - CV Review
Catch the reader’s attention – fast! The key information in your CV should jump out at the reader within the first few seconds of being reviewed. To help you get it right, the Career Development Centre runs multiple CV Review tutorials a week during semester time.
CV 102 tutorials offer you the opportunity to:
- Put yourself in the position of an employer and really tune in to what is required in a CV.
- Learn from your peers what works well in your own CV.
- See alternative ways of displaying similar information.
Places are limited. View and book times through OtagoCareerHub (Login required).
If your cover letter needs work, come along to a Cover Letter 102 tutorial.
3. Refine your drafts using our CV, cover letter and application resources
Time to get to work! Use the online resources on our website and combine the information with the notes in the CV guide and the advice you gained at the CV 101 seminar and CV and Cover letter 102 tutorials.
Our collection of resources and guidelines will help you order the information you have gathered for your CV into an effective layout and hierarchy. We also offer assistance with refining your cover letter and application.
Visit our CV & Cover letter page for more information on how to write a strong CV and cover letter.
Check out the range of online job application resources to help you prepare a compelling application.
4. Get one-on-one feedback and advice from us
Polish your CV final draft and cover letters into the most effective application possible – with our help. Bring the finalised version of your CV or cover letter to a one-on-one appointment with one of our career advisers for review. Our advisers have lots of experience and a wide range of areas of expertise.
Our advisers will look at your CV and cover letter from a reader's point of view and help you perfect your:
They can also advise you on how to tailor your CV and cover letter to a particular field or company and can answer questions you may still have about your application.
CV / Cover Letter Review: One-to-one appointment (20 minutes) with a career adviser for a final check of your CV / cover letter. Book via OtagoCareerHub.
CV / Cover Letter Clinic: Drop-in clinic for CV and cover letter review with a career adviser (Mon/Wed/Fri, 3:30 - 4:30 pm).
5. Submit your application
Now that you are satisfied your application is ‘looking its best’, it’s time to send it off. Remember to print your CV out in black and white to ensure it looks as effective in print as it does on your screen.
Sending your application electronically
Most likely, you will be submitting your application electronically. Send or upload your cover letter and CV as separate attachments - one for your cover letter, and another for your CV.
Recommended formats for your documents include:
- .rtf (Rich Text Format, supported by Microsoft Word and other products)
- .pdf (Adobe Acrobat format)
- .doc/.docx (Word processing document)