Assembling the best team is crucial for the success of your business. And it all starts with your employee application form.
This simple form is the gateway to the hiring process and, so, is an essential part of your business’s recruitment strategy.
In this article, the workforce-management experts at Sling give you a basic employee application form template and discuss expert tips for customizing it to be the best fit for your business.
What Is An Employee Application Form?
An employee application form (a.k.a. a job application or an application for employment) is a document used to gather information about an individual who is interested in working for your business.
The form typically asks for a combination of personal and professional information, including such data as:
- Contact information (e.g., email and phone)
- Social security number
- Position being applied for
While that information is pretty standard, you can customize your employee application form to ask for the things you need to know for your business (with a few legal exceptions).
You may also choose to allow the candidate to include a résumé to further flesh out the details you ask for.
If they have a résumé, though, why would you need the employee application form? It all comes down to standardization and ease of comparison.
No two résumés will have the same design, font, color, or structure (just to name a few variables). That can make finding information quickly extremely difficult.
In one résumé, the person’s education may be at the top. In another résumé, the education may be at the bottom. In yet another résumé, there may be no education section at all.
In a standardized employee application form, however, information for different candidates is in exactly the same place, so it’s easy to place two, three, or more documents side by side and compare the qualifications of each.
You can’t do that with résumés.
But in order to make your employee application form as consistent as possible, start with a basic template and customize from there.
Employee Application Form Template
In this section, we’ve put together a very basic employee application form template that you can use as-is or modify to better suit your business.
We’ve also included an employee availability form as part of the template so you can gather enough information to make the best decision possible about a potential new hire.
Armed with a basic knowledge of what to include on an employee application form, we’ll now discuss tips for making your template the best it can be.
Creating Your Own Employee Application Form
1) Obtain Their Contact Information
Contact information is at the top of the list (and at the top of the document) when it comes to creating your own employee application form.
At a minimum, ask the candidate for a cell phone number or email address (even both).
It’s also a good idea — though not absolutely necessary, at this point — to ask for their address and perhaps a secondary phone number (e.g. a landline) where you can reach them if they don’t answer via the primary channels.
2) Ask About Eligibility Right Away
If the candidate is not eligible to work, there’s really no reason to continue reading the employee application form.
That’s why we recommend putting a few eligibility questions (e.g., legal status, age, criminal record, etc.) toward the top of the document so you can see right away if they are a legitimate candidate or not.
3) Prioritize Availability In Your Employee Application Form
Another essential question to include in your employee application form is the candidate’s availability. If they need part-time work but you’re looking for full-time help, they might not be the right fit for the job.
For more information on employee availability, check out this article from the Sling blog: Employee Availability Forms: How To Use Them + Free Template.
4) Include Questions Unique To Your Business
Every business has its own unique requirements. Be sure to include questions about these requirements on your employee application form.
For example, you might need to make sure the candidate for inventory stocker can handle lifting twenty pounds from the floor to overhead repeatedly during the course of a shift.
Or, if the candidate is applying for a food runner position, do they have a high attention to detail?
These unique questions will help you decide if a candidate has the skills necessary to do the job right.
5) Ensure Accuracy With A Signature Line
A signature line at the end of your employee application form dissuades candidates from being dishonest or inflating their eligibility, education, and experience.
It’s also a good idea to ask the candidate to date the application after they sign it so you know how long it’s been since they first filled out the form.
6) Consult With Your Lawyer
In the United States, there are a number of questions you can’t ask potential candidates on your employee application form. In addition, some states have restrictions on what you can and can’t ask a job seeker.
Ensure that your business remains compliant with both state and federal guidelines by consulting an attorney before you roll out a new form.
7) Disclose Potential Dangers
Potential dangers on the job may come out during the interview process, but it’s always a good idea to include them on the application form.
Even a brief mention will get the candidate thinking about the issue so that, if it’s a real problem, they can withdraw their application.
8) Provide Follow-Up Instructions
After a few weeks or months, candidates will start contacting your HR department about the status of their application.
If you don’t want a flood of calls, texts, emails, and in-person visits, provide follow-up instructions at the end of your employee application form.
9) Keep Employee Application Forms For Twelve Months
You may fill the open position right away, but it’s a good idea to keep all your employee application forms for twelve months.
The new hire may not work out. Or you may have a new position open up. Either way, if you have a number of applications on file, you don’t have to start from scratch to find a replacement.
Make Time To Work On Your Employee Application Form
It seems as though a manager’s job is never done.
You’ve got inventory, and ordering, and customer service, not to mention training, marketing, keeping track of employees clocking in and out, labor expenses, payroll, overtime, and planning for the future.
And don’t forget formatting, producing, distributing, and editing the employee work schedule. That by itself is enough to occupy an entire workday.
So how can you make time to work on your employee application form? Use the Sling app to create the perfect work schedule for you and your team.
Sling simplifies and streamlines all of these processes so you can focus your energy on more advanced business issues.
Not only is Sling an extremely powerful work schedule creator, but it’s also a mobile time clock, labor cost analyzer, intra-business messaging system, newsfeed manager, and employee task list all rolled into one easy-to-use package.
You can even use one Sling account to schedule employees across multiple locations. Now that’s power and flexibility!
Add in the onboard A.I. that notifies you when there’s a scheduling conflict or you missed a request for time off, and you’ve got the perfect system for managing your employees and finding time in your day to work on perfecting your employee application form.
The Sling app is free, easy to use, and will help you spend your time more efficiently so you can concentrate on honing and perfecting every aspect of your business.
From the retail and service industries to the healthcare and non-profit sectors, Sling will help you manage your business more effectively.
For more free resources to help you manage your business better, organize and schedule your team, and track and calculate labor costs, visit GetSling.com today.