What does a review of your application involve?

My Review Service is designed to help you understand how to prepare a public sector job application so you won’t need help in the future. By identifying gaps in content and/or style, my review guides you to express your case for a job as strongly as possible.

What the review does not involve

My review does not involve writing your application for you, or rewriting your application. The review does not involve any in-person meetings. The review is completed by email exchange, and in some cases, phone discussions. The review service does not apply to senior executive roles. For these it is wise to seek help from someone with recent senior executive experience.

What the review does provide

My review will indicate where improvements can be made, make suggestions on how to structure and express aspects of your application, refer you to relevant material for further guidance, suggest edits to strengthen and/or shorten text, raise questions for further consideration.

My review takes into account the role, the level of seniority, the department/agency, the application requirements, background information, and relevant corporate documents such as policies, frameworks, strategic goals.

I consider the application from the perspective of a selection panel, focusing on whether you have met the application requirements, the content, structure and style of the application, and whether it is pitched to the role and level of seniority.

While a well-written application increases your chances of being shortlisted, there is no guarantee that this will occur. Various factors are beyond our control, such as the number and quality of applications, and the skill and motivation of the selection panel.

What you are asked to send

So that I can provide an informed approach to the review, you are asked to provide a range of documents. These include:

Your application: most public sector applications involve a resume/CV and a document that can be a statement, pitch or responses to selection criteria. Both documents need to be reviewed to ensure they complement each other, are well structured, and include necessary information.

Role information: this includes the role description, role advertisement, and any other information about the role and application process, including the specific wording of the application requirements.

Background information: this is a set of questions so that inaccurate assumptions and suggestions are avoided.

Relevant documents: a range of documents may be relevant to the role and need to be taken into account when preparing an application, such as relevant policies, frameworks, corporate goals.

How long does a review take?

Given many roles have a two-week application window, if you’re considering a review then you need to allow enough time to prepare your documents, send the information asked for, complete the review and for you to make any adjustments needed before the closing date. Reviews are completed within 24 hours of receipt of all documents. Asking for a review the day before the application is due is unlikely to work.

The amount of time a review takes will depend on: reading the documents provided; assessing the application in light of the documents provided; raising any questions and/or completing any further research to inform the review; inserting suggestions, comments and edits; the quality of the documents provided.

In most cases the suggestions and comments provided are enough to complete the final version. In a few cases, where documents are misaligned with the application requirements, and/or are not pitched to the role or level of seniority, a major rewrite may be needed. Some people choose to rewrite and resend for further review, before submitting.

A brochure about the Review Service and Interview Coaching is available on this website.

If you are considering a review, please use the Contact Us page on this website.

Fee articles to help with applications and interviews may be useful.

Dr Ann Villiers, career coach, writer and author, is Australia’s only Mental Nutritionist specialising in mind and language practices that help people build flexible thinking, confident speaking and quality connections with people.