Application Guide

Writing a job application can be daunting and stressful but it doesn’t need to be.  

Our recruitment team have shared their top tips to support you when you are ready to make your application.

Tip 1: Read all supporting documents

Read the Job Description and Person Specification before you start. These will be listed as downloads to the job advert online.

Write down on a separate document or some paper where your experience matches what has been asked for and any examples that bring that to life.

Don’t assume that it’s obvious from your experience that you can do what is asked. The individual undertaking the shortlisting will be looking for examples of where  you have evidenced that you can complete the tasks expected of you so make it easy for them!

Tip 2: Do your research

It’s a good idea to do some research about the organisation before you apply. Have a look on our main website, to find out more about  our Trust, our values and how the job you’re applying for fits within the wider organisation.

It will also help you understand important details such as the organisation’s location and the range of services we provide.

Tip 3: Don’t rely on the same application each time you apply

Never send the same application form twice. We know that some people are motivated to work for our Trust but if you are not shortlisted then there may be a reason for that within your application form.

Make sure you adapt your application to meet the person specification of the post you are applying for.

If you’ve applied for the role before but were not shortlisted, look again at the advert and important documents and take the time to improve your application if you can.

Tip 4: Update your employment history

When you apply for a role in the NHS, you’ll be asked about your employment history and to list what you’ve done in earlier jobs. If successful as a minimum, you will be asked for 3 years employment history for references so make sure you include this within your application!

Take some time to write this down, do this in chronological order from your earliest job to the most recent.

 These may be very different from the role you are applying however there may be existing skills that match the job description of the role you are applying for to think about how this applies to your employment history.

Top tip: Writing your supporting statement in Microsoft Word

If you’re asked to include a supporting statement, we recommend writing this in a Microsoft Word document first, so you can easily edit and proofread it before copying and pasting it into the online application form.

Tip 5: Identify your transferable skills

Now you’ve written down your employment history you can think about the skills you have learnt along the way.

It’s likely that you will have transferable skills from your life experience or other jobs in different industries. It’s a good idea to think about what these skills are and how they match the skills in the job description before you start writing your application.

For information on how to how to identify your transferable skills. Visit the Health Careers website.

Tip 6: Fill in all the parts of the form

Read the instructions within the advertisement and application form very carefully and make sure that you fill in all the sections of the application form. The information you give in the 'application for employment' section will be used to decide if you should be shortlisted for interview.

The 'personal information' and 'monitoring information' sections will not be used for shortlisting but will be kept for administrative purposes only.

Tip 7: Who you are is important too

As with your written application, the people interviewing you will be looking at how your personality lines up with the organisation’s values and the needs of the role.

Values based interview questions are designed to draw out your personal attributes, based on how you would behave in a specific situation.

One way to prepare for your interview is to spend some time thinking about how your personality, skills, and experience, from paid work and your personal life, match with the organisation’s values and the attributes noted in the job description.

Re-reading the job description and/or people specification and your written application might help with this. Look at the skills, experience and personal attributes asked for in the job description and think about examples of a time when you have done similar tasks or showed similar skills in the past.

An example of a values-based interview question which can be used to draw out the values of compassion and empathy could be: “Can you give an example of a time when you helped someone in need?”

You can find more information on values-based interviews here.

Practice interview questions

Practising and using the ‘STAR’ technique can be a helpful way to structure your answers in interviews and feel more confident on the day.

Situation – set the scene for your answer by explaining what the situation was

Task – describe your role in the situation

Action – explain exactly what you did and why

Result – explain what happened because of your actions.

You can read more about how to use the ‘STAR’ technique here.

Thanks for taking the time to read our top tips on writing a job application, if you have any further questions, contact Good luck with your application!