Cracking the Selection Criteria Code

Wondered why your application is not being viewed? Trying to sort out the selection criteria code? And why are Key Selection Criteria so hard? In fact, why do employers, particularly government departments demand them?

They can be a nightmare to address if you are not sure what you are doing. What are they really looking for? What constitutes a good response to a selection criteria?

Because they are generally sought after, well paying, excellent terms and conditions kind of jobs (like flexible work arrangements, generous leave entitlements, career progression, paid training, discounted public transport, the list can go on!). They need to be treated with respect for the public service.

They get loads of applications and the best way to sift through them is by asking you to do some work first – basically, sell yourself with a story of examples. Work hard at getting a job with them. They cull their list, by making you do the hard yards. And if you get that government job, you know it’s worth it – usually it’s a long-term position or a contract position that will convert. This is why people pay a professional to get their applications done, because all that is worth it and is paid for after your first week’s pay!

Everyone tells you how hard it is to get government jobs. Gone are the days when you got your foot in the door by chance, if you don’t know someone in there, you’ll never have a chance. Times have changed. And it’s getting harder.

Getting your application noticed is one thing but then getting an interview is yet another whole experience.

Trying to sort out a cover letter, selection criteria and a relevant resume can take a lot of time!

Make every word on your application count

One of the best tips for addressing the selection criteria is called STAR as it’s commonly known. STAR is the acronym for:

Situation – Where and when you do the task
Task – Describe the task required
Action – What did you do? How did you do it?
Result – What was the outcome of your actions?

Backup your answers with related examples of what you have achieved and why these experiences will help you to thrive in the role you are applying for.

Example response to the STAR Method:

·         Situation – Role as Project Manager at XX Company

·         Task

In this role, I needed to ensure that all team conflicts were resolved effectively and in a positive manner

·         Action

I ensured that when any conflicts arose, they were handled straight away and according to business protocol

·         Result

By doing so led to small conflicts remaining contained, and improved lines of communication between team members.

The Cover Letter and Resume are often the last thing a government department look at, in fact they look at how you address the Key Selection Criteria first! And often that is a computer reading your selection criteria, seeking out the keywords that were within the job description.

Be sure to read the instructions on applying for the position carefully before even considering responding; if they ask for just a one page selection criteria response, then make sure it is just that. Maximise the use of bullet points to cut out the waffle and be direct without compromising what you need to say.

That is why people pay good money to have them written. As I said, it’s worth the money if you can actually secure one of these jobs.

So, if you’re having a hard time and just stressing out, find it too hard, can’t make every word count, then seek assistance from a professional that has actually got the results. That is what I am here for.