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Before You Click Apply: Optimize Your Application

Before You Click Apply: Optimize Your Application

So, you’ve found a great job to apply for on Now what? 

Of course, the next step is to apply for it, right? Not so fast! 

Here are a few things to consider before you click apply on that exciting opportunity. 

Review all instructions in the job listing 

Carefully review the job listing and fully read through the instructions including details how, when and where to apply.

Take note of these common key application instructions and information: 

  • Application link, email address and/or mailing address.
  • Application deadline – this key! Make sure you’re applying before the indicated date and time.
  • Overall application guidance including additional information you may need to include, the length your resume needs to be (e.g., no longer than two pages) and the format of your application (e.g., PDF combined with your cover letter).
  • Screening questions you need to answer in addition to your resume and cover letter or questions you need to answer directly in your cover letter.
  • Your signature and completed form indicating you’ve watched a required video or completed required training. 

The listing may be very specific and advise candidates not to call or email any inquiries related to the position. It may also include contact information for you to request more information about the position (like an Executive Brief).

Following the application instructions shows organizations, like regulatory bodies, that you pay attention to detail. Overall, it shows you that you care about the opportunity they’re advertising!

Missing an application deadline, reaching out to ask questions about the position when the job listing clearly says not to, or failing to address specific questions in your cover letter (or not providing a cover letter at all when the job listing requires it) puts your chances of candidacy at risk.

Tailor your typo free resume 

Aim to tailor your resume specifically to the position and highlight your relevant experience.

For example, if you’re applying for a communications role, outline your communications experience, relevant skills and certifications. 

Use action-oriented language that is clear, concise, and professional. Always read through your resume more than once for a thorough spellcheck. One typo can make the difference between you getting called in for an interview or not. 

Looking for guidance on creating a standout resume?
Read our blog for guidance.

Update your social platforms

More and more employers are searching online to learn about potential candidates. Make sure that your publicly accessible social media profiles are up-to-date, and accurately convey who you are.

Use LinkedIn to showcase your relevant experience, educational background, and to highlight your notable achievements such as certifications or licenses granted, awards received, etc.

Recruiting agencies have influence

If you’re applying for a job via a recruiting agency, how and when you communicate with them could significantly affect whether you’re put forward for an interview with the employer. 

Remember that the recruiting agency is working on behalf of the employer and is acting as the gateway between them and applicants. Consider your communication with the recruiter and always aim to be professional, polite and avoid errors. 

What if you’re selected for an interview? Send a thank you message! Also aim to send a thank you email after the interview is conducted.

Ready to apply? Use to upload your resume, track what you’ve applied for and stay connected with the latest opportunities in regulation and consumer protection. Sign up now.

Good luck!

This article provides many tips to job seekers looking for their first opportunity in Canada’s regulatory sector. It provides links to additional resources and organizations to provide sufficient context for job seekers. This is intended for publication on platforms catering to job seekers and professionals considering a career change. Originally published on