Using Employment Kiosks and
Online Job Applications
According to KioskMarketplace.com, employers "are using self-service technology to hire better-quality workers and to use their HR staffs more efficiently." It also has some advantages for the employers, namely consistency of presentation (all applicants look the same), automating the sorting and screening of a large number of applicant, and even pre-sorting applicants through the use of various assessments. I know I see these machines in many businesses I patronize, so they are popular among employers. What I have included is advice and a few resources you can use to help insure your time spent at an employer's kiosk will not be time wasted.
Two things I noted while researching this topic:
- Make sure you have enough time to complete this application in a single sitting. It can take 20 to 30 minutes to work through a kiosk's application, longer if they also want you to complete some kind of assessment, and you do not want to have to abandon this in the middle due to time constraints.
- Bring a resume or work history plus references with you. This information will be asked of you, so sit down before you start and prepare that resume right now.
If you are not comfortable using computers or touch-screen machines, you will need to practice these skills so you are not immediately rejected due to your personal discomfort or lack of expertise. Talk to the staff at your local State Employment Service Office or a local public library about free computer classes. I have a link to a free software program you can use to practice filling out a kiosk application, but you will still need a computer on which you can load it.
- Applying for a Job at a Hiring Kiosk, Alison Doyle (About.com)
- "Hiring kiosks allow job applicants to fill out online job applications (instead of paper ones) while in a store or office." This article introduces you to the basic of using these quick, in-house application systems when you are searching for work. One good point Alison makes -- bring a copy of your resume or your work history with you "because you will need to fill out the online application with all your personal and employment-related information."
These are several examples of job applications you can use for practice or preparation. These include online forms you can try, printable applications you can review, and a practice kiosk program.
While many applications are similar, some do ask slightly different questions or want the information presented differently. It is a good idea to select one or two, download and / or print them, and fill them out as a practice for application you may need to fill out in person. Once you have an application you like, carry it with you so you can easily remember all the information for your real applications.
- Sample Job Application Forms, Career Kokua
- "The Career Kokua form includes almost everything you might find on a company application. Practice filling it out and use it as a reference to complete other application forms. Review a copy of your application before your job interview." There are two versions of the form, and I recommend you practice with both:
- Simulated Online / Kiosk Job Application
- Created by the National Institute of Corrections Offender Workforce Development Division, this free simulation training software program provides basic information about computerized employment applications, tips for completing online job applications, a printable worksheet that can be used to prepare users for these systems, and a full-length interactive application with context sensitive help. Job counselors can download the setup program from this site for free or order a CD-ROM at no cost. A single copy can be used by multiple users (there is an option to erase a person's practice file). I downloaded the program and played with it a bit, and I found it easy to use and extremely helpful.
- Practice Job Application, from the Boston Private Industry Council (Boston PIC)
- "A basic practice application developed by The Boston Private Industry Council, Inc. and Boston's One Stop Career Centers (Boston Career Link, JobNet and The Work Place) for anyone who needs more information about how to prepare for and complete online job applications." Anyone can download the free ZIP file (requires an application like WinZip to open), which then presents you with a mock online (Internet) job application that is several pages long and includes Required Fields (so your users understand why those are necessary), then it goes into some interview-type questions (including some personality profiling), and concludes with notices regarding credit and criminal background checks. The ZIP file is small, and the extracted practice site is easy to run on any computer equipped with a web browser, even if it is not connected to the Internet. And no, none of the answers are saved and none of the information is sent anywhere. This comes highly recommended by a trainer in Ohio who works with mature job seekers, so you know it is good!
- Sample Job Application [PDF], QuintCareers.com
- This 4-page sample is more detailed than the one provided by PA DLI. This PDF document requires the free Adobe Reader to view and print.
- Sample Job Application [.doc], SampleWords.com
- This page includes a downloadable sample application you can open in Word.
- Actual job applications! This site provides hundreds of printable and online applications for retail stores, department stores, pharmacies, grocery stores, restaurants, shops, etc. Review the Job Categories on the left or right side, select the one that interests you, then see who they list and link to. There are other great uses for this site too. If you need some extra time filling out a paper application for a particular employer, you can download and print it out from here then take it with you to speak with the hiring manager. Or if you just want an application to fill out and reference while you complete an electronic application through the store's in-house kiosk, that is also a great idea.