“Hiring managers don’t hire people; they hire applications.”
Your application represents you to hiring managers. It is you on paper. It is your brain on paper. It is the only version of you that hiring managers will see when they decide whether to invite you to an interview or whether to toss your application into the circular file.
This means that in the selection process, it doesn’t really matter how qualified you are for your target job. It only matters how qualified your application “says” you are, and how clearly and persuasively it says so. In other words, if you don’t include all of your relevant qualifications and describe them in clear and persuasive terms, you will risk getting beaten out by less qualified applicants who convey their qualifications more skillfully.
With advice straight from federal hiring managers, Part II will teach you how to identify your key qualifications and format and phrase them for a quick, clear, and persuasive read—whether you are preparing a hard-copy or online application.