Key Selection Criteria

9 Easy Steps to Addressing Selection Criteria

Many organisations these days require you to address specific selection criteria when you apply for a job. It is a way for the employer to focus on the specific skills and abilities they need the person to have, to do the job.

Writing to selection criteria may seem difficult at first. However, like everything else, if you approach it systematically and practise it, you will continue to get better.

Key Selection Criteria
Need help writing selection criteria for my government job application

It is not enough to tell an employer that ‘I have done it ‘ or ‘I am very good at this’.

You need to tell them what you have done and how you did it. A simple approach to writing to selection criteria is set out below.

Step 1: Read through all the selection criteria carefully.

Step 2: Use a highlight pen or some other marker to underline the key words or verbs in each criteria, e.g. demonstrated written and oral communication skills.

Step 3: Get a piece of paper and divide it up into squares for the number of selection criteria you need to address, that is if there are 4 criteria divide your paper into 4 squares.

Step 4: For each square write in the key words or verbs you have highlighted in each criterion.

Step 5: Under each heading write in what you have done that shows your skills and abilities in that area.

Example: Verbal communication – member of school council, ran sports club meetings, represented club at local conference; Written communication – editor of school magazine, wrote paper for local conference, wrote letters to club members. (TIP: Use the STAR principle as the formula for each example – see next page)

Step 6: Now pick out your top three achievements from each list. Use your 2nd and/or 3rd choice to write about when addressing the selection criteria. Remember you are only trying to get an interview at this stage so you only need to satisfy the employer that you have the skills and abilities they want. Note: Keep the best for last; talk about your number one achievement at the interview.

Step 7: Analyse how you did them e.g. editing the school magazine – read articles that are submitted to see whether they are suitable for the target audience, check style, spelling, grammar, etc., re-write or make editorial changes.

Step 8: Write a paragraph or two for each criterion covering the information you generated in steps 5, 6 and 7. You may end up with something like the example below.

Step 9: Check that you have written to all the criteria and that there are no spelling or grammatical errors. When you have finished writing to the selection criteria add your letter of application to the front and your resume at the back.

Use the STAR principle – S T A R Analysis

S – Situation (what was the situation e.g. the organisation you were working for)

T – Task (what was required to be done)

A – Action (what action did YOU take)

R – Result (what successful result did you achieve)

Remember to be methodical in your approach. Use the best examples you can think of that highlight your strengths and had a great outcome

Good luck!

If you get stuck, feel overwhelmed, or just don’t have the time to write your application, I can help. Send the role description along with your resume and how I could help you. I can provide feedback, coach you on how to put the application together, or better yet, write it for you!

Key selection criteria
frustrated overwhelmed at writing key selection criteria for government job application

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