Career experts reveal things you should NEVER do when applying for a job

  • Career experts from the across the UK explain their do’s and don’ts for landing your dream job
  • UK job vacancies at an all time high

Applying for a new job can be both nerve wracking and exciting, and knowing how to conduct yourself is crucial. But knowing exactly what NOT to do is even more important.

Job vacancies are at an all-time high, according to the latest ONS figures there are currently 1.3 million vacancies across the UK.

To help job seekers, office furniture retailer, Furniture At Work, has worked with career experts from across the UK to reveal what you should and shouldn’t do to land your dream job.

Here are three you shouldn’t do

1.      Lie

Matt Somers, Career Coach, comments “Just don’t do it. Ever. Rather than wonder if you can get away with a small lie on this CV or that online application, just resolve never to lie. That way you’re never under pressure at an interview to remember what you lied about, interviews are stressful enough as it is!”

Some of the most common things candidates lie about, according to a YouGov* survey, include:

  • Having a mastery of skills they barely use (like Excel or a foreign language)
  • Working at a company longer than they did in order to omit another employer
  • Earning a degree from a prestigious university instead of where they actually went

2.      Insult Your Former Employer

Was your last job horrible? Was your boss the worst you’ve ever had? Don’t mention it. Speaking badly about former jobs and employers is never wise. How does your future employer know that you won’t talk about him that way next time around? And certainly don’t take any of these comments to social media, that is seriously bad office etiquette.

3.      Hold yourself back

Simon Roderick, MD of Fram Search, said: “The first thing about applying for your dream job, is to actually apply instead of holding yourself back and worrying! Have the confidence to think “If not me, then who?” Back yourself though and you may be surprised at the outcome.”

Here are four things you should do:

1.      Role Play

Run through your interview with a friend, family member, or even just in front of the mirror! Research               different interview techniques and be prepared for some tricky questions, so you can refer to your practice during the interview.

2.      Personalise Your CV & Cover Letter

Your CV should be personalised for each job; make it career specific. Each time you apply for a new company, edit it and think ‘what would this company be wanting to see?’

  • Make your CV and cover letter relevant. You may have a wealth of experience and knowledge, but if it’s not applicable to that job, the employer isn’t going to read it, and they may miss out on reading the experience that is vital to their role.
  • Include referrals! Amanda Augustine, career expert at TopCV, explains: You’re 10 times more likely to land the job when your application is accompanied by a referral. Use your personal and professional connections and social media platforms such as LinkedIn to find and connect with people in your target field and industry.”

3.      Do Your Research

Companies won’t be expecting you to know all the ins and outs of their business, but they will expect you to have a basic knowledge of the company and the job you’re applying for.

Things you could research:

    • How long has the company existed?
    • Any recent/newsworthy events the company have been involved in
    • Some clients/products/services they have worked with
    • Who are their direct competitors?
    • Which member of staff is interviewing you? Check out their LinkedIn and familiarize yourself with their role in the business and some career achievements they might have had recently.

4.      Make The First Move

  • Don’t feel like you must wait for the employer to get in touch, send them a polite follow up email to see how their process is going.
  • Ask them if they have any feedback, positive or critical. No matter the outcome of the interview, knowing which areas you were stronger or weaker in will become invaluable life experience.


For more guides and content surrounding the workplace, head to the Furniture At Work blog.

Looking to recruit via an agency?
Read our report “The Ultimate Guide to Finding a Recruitment Partner

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Read our guide “The Ultimate Guide to The Recruitment Process”