Thursday, January 21, 2010

"A Common App" for Job Applications

Happy Squirrel Appreciation Day!

When I applied to college, I was happy to find out a school I was applying to used the "Common App". For those unfamiliar with it, this is basically a general college application that you could fill out once and then submit to all schools that would accept it. It saved me time and energy and focused me on finding the schools I was really interested in rather than worrying about what their application requirements were.

The other day I got to wondering: why can't we do this for job searches? Maybe we can call it the "Professional App". Really, why can't there be one generic job application that someone could fill out and submit to any companies that accepted it? Every job application a person fills out has the same information: Name, Address, Past Employment, Education. But for every job one applies to, they need to fill out a separate job application, manually inputting all the same information. Why can't this be standardized into one form? For each company you want to apply to, you can submit this form but still can personalize your cover letter and attached resume. And like the college-bound Common App, the Professional App could have specific answers for specific jobs as well, but keep the common information the same (in college apps these are essays, but in the Professional App, it could be specific questions for the job one would need to do). 

For a company receiving applications, there could be benefits as well. They wouldn't have to spend as much money to host their own job application site. The companies would be able to receive applications in an easy-to-use format and would be able to differentiate between candidates easily. And companies should receive more candidates to choose from because of the ease of applying. They may get a few more "lazy" applicants, but with a cover letter still to write and interviews still to do, the talent pool would certainly grow.

Thoughts? Do you think this would work? Would your company use it?

1 comment:

  1. I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.



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