Taking the Plunge – Part 1: Applying for Work Online

Alright, so you finally settled on what type of home business you would like to operate, you’ve selected a catchy name for your company, carved out a little workspace in your home and now you’re finally ready to look for come clients.

Depending on what type of business you have selected, you may decide to use the Internet to help find prospective clients. As we discussed in an earlier blog entry, there are thousands of Internet job board that list available positions in nearly every discipline you could imagine.

Assuming this is true in your case, you spend a few days visiting the various job boards you have bookmarked and find some opportunities that seem to have potential. Now what?

Applying for a job or project in the virtual work place is quite different from the traditional paper application process. In most cases, you will not be asked to complete an application, rather, you will be invited to send an email in which you will describe your qualifications, provide samples of your work and convince the employer why they should choose you over the seven hundred other applicants. And, you need to get this email in quickly because employers are generally so inundated with responses that they stop looking at emails within a few hours of posting the job.

And while you’re doing all of this, you need to be sure that you precisely follow the employer’s instructions or risk having your email deleted without being read. Some of the most important things to look for is direction concerning whether or not attachments should be used for samples and resumes, and ensuring you answer any and all specific questions. You should also be sure your message is free of spelling errors and other typographical errors.

Finally, you should try to make your message stand out from the others. I have found that a less-formal, conversational tone seems to work well with most prospective employers. You may find it helpful to take some time to draft a few standard emails that you can use to quickly apply for work. This will not only help you to get your email in ahead of the competition, it will eliminate the need to continually have to check your message for spelling errors.