Applying for jobs with Suffolk County Council, Mid Suffolk District Council or Customer Service Direct
Suffolk County Council, Mid Suffolk District Council and Customer Service Direct's preferred method of job application is to use the online facility on this website. The system allows you to save your details, enables you to make subsequent applications much faster and supports the Council's aim in becoming the Greenest County by reducing the amount of paper consumed in the recruitment process.
We offer a guaranteed interview to all disabled candidates who meet the minimum criteria for a job vacancy.
Although completing an application form online is the best method to apply for any vacancy, you may print off a PDF version of either the DBS application form (if the job ref. ends in /CRB) or Non-CRB application form (if the job ref. ends in /NDBS) here. Please ensure you use the correct form.
Please note that the following is general advice and does not relate specifically to the application forms on this site.
It is not possible to produce a good application without giving yourself the time to do so. You need to read through the form itself, and any accompanying literature, before you begin to draft your answers.
* Check your dates and details for the factual section
* Consider which of your achievements / experiences you can use
* Examples can be drawn from your social life as well as your academic and work experience
* Think about what the employer is looking for and what you need to show
* Remember that this is an opportunity to sell yourself.
Tailor your application
You need to be sure that you are applying to the right jobs/companies, otherwise you will find it extremely difficult to complete the application form:
* Have you thoroughly researched both?
* Have you a realistic idea of what the job involves?
* Do you know what the employer is looking for?
* Could you do the job/fit in to the Organisation?
* List the skills that are required and then list the evidence you will use to match them
* Photocopy the form and try out your answers. It may take several attempts to get balanced answers which fit in the spaces provided
* Use positive language and write clearly and concisely
* Check your spelling and grammar
* Get some one to check what you have written.
Watch the detail:
* Follow any instructions - these often appear at the top of the form
* Pay attention to the layout
* Use a good quality black pen
* If you are word processing the form, be very careful about trying to line up the boxes
* Check with your referees before putting their names down. You may also want to let them know which jobs you have applied for and give them a copy of your application.
* Make sure that you have answered all the questions
* Keep a copy of the completed form - you will need to refer to it if you go for interview.
It is a formal letter to introduce your Application Form or CV to the right person within an organisation. It is the first thing any employer will read and, as such, should create a positive impression and encourage them to take your application seriously.
Rules - your letter should:
* Be addressed to a particular person
* Use one side of A4, on good quality paper
* Be clear, concise and easy to read - with no spelling or grammar mistakes
* Word processed - unless the employer requests a hand-written letter
* Have a positive tone and not use words like 'I have only...', 'just'
* Highlight your key strengths and suitability for the job
* Explain why you are interested in the job, Organisation and what you have to offer
* End on a positive note, e.g. 'looking forward to meeting you'.
Emailing Covering Letters
* Send to the right person - don't cc lots of people
* Use the subject line to give the vacancy title/reference number or to state what your email is about
* Put your personal details (such as address etc.) at the end
* Make sure the key points appear. E-mail displays only 20 lines of text, so view in the outbox before sending to check all important points appear on screen
* Use short sentences and very short paragraphs
* Don't be too casual or over familiar
* Check spelling and grammar NB if sending a CV as an attachment remember to include your own name in the file name eg johnsmithCV.doc
Increasingly, employers are using computer based application forms, via the internet. This is a trend that is likely to continue and some companies are only accepting online applications for graduate trainee posts. All graduates today are expected to be computer literate, and applying online serves to demonstrate your skills.
* It's fast, including the time it takes for an employer to acknowledge your application
* It's simpler and uses less paper
* It can be cheaper, as you have free access to the internet through the university
* It can be more objective, no assumptions made on the basis of your handwriting.
* You may be more tempted to do a fast, sloppy application
* Because the 'boxes' on the form usually expand endlessly to fit the text, you might ramble on and on. On the other hand it is sometimes the case that some 'boxes' give a restrictive word count
* Although it is uncommon, on some systems you may have to complete the form in one sitting, and you will not be allowed to save your answers and come back to them at a later date
* There may also be a time limit within which the form must be completed, although again this is rare
* Some systems require you to complete an online personality test first and you have to achieve a certain score or a particular profile type before you are given access to the application form.
Before you start
Just as with any printed Application Form, the content of your application is vital. You need to think about the questions and prepare your responses. You should print a copy of the form and practice your answers. The text boxes will probably expand, but you should try and produce balanced responses. It may help to think about the space usually allocated on a traditional printed form.
After you've completed the form
Check your spelling and grammar, especially as you cannot always use a spell check (NB this does not always pick up on all mistakes eg liaise, driving licence, these are the correct spellings!). Before actually sending the form, print it and read it through, making sure you have completed all sections. You will need to keep a copy to consult before your interview.
Some employers use electronic packages to initially scan applications. This means that the first sift of all applications is based on a machine recognising keywords and phrases relevant to that job/employer, as well as checking standard information such as exam results You will not necessarily know whether your application will be scanned, and so you must use strong, positive language and include words/phrases used in the Organisation literature and job specification.