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I'm filling in a job application and, at the end, there is an optional free-text field which says "Comments about you".

What am I supposed to write in this field? What is this field for?

If it matters, it's located right under "How did you hear about us" (which is a drop-down containing a list of sites).

At first I thought it might serve a similar purpose as a cover letter, but one can also upload documents in a different part of the form and they specifically mention a cover letter as an example document. If they are similar, how would I decide what goes in one versus the other? Note: I already have a decent idea what a cover letter should look like.

  • What does it say in the original German wording? – simbabque Jun 18 at 15:25
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Its a perfect spot for a elevator pitch about yourself.

Think of it as a compact version of your cover letter (which probably will only be glanced over anyway).

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If the field is optional, and you can't think of anything to write there, leave it empty.

  • I wouldn't be able to think of anything to write if I don't know what information they expect to be written. Since the field is there, there is presumably some expectation for what's supposed to fit there, which is what I'm trying to find out. – OtherwiseFishing Jun 16 at 17:30
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    1. You stated that the field is optional, so there's no expectation that you will write something there. 2. If you do write something there then write something about yourself, which is what the field is for... "Comments about yourself"... so write some comments about yourself. – joeqwerty Jun 16 at 18:05
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Note, if you have to fill forms on your application, it is likely a "zeroth step" in the employment process. Its most probable function to silently dismiss the applications where it is some crap. The HR will probably ignore it, except that it will be a serious disadvantage, if you had written something which is a red flag for them.

In theory, you can write anything or you can leave it empty.

However, I would say to fill it. Without seeing the whole form, I suspect it has essentially a similar role like a motivation letter.

It is a way to show for them, that you consider them as an important option about your future.

Write some general sentences about that why would you like to work for them. Avoid anything looking "red flag". For example: "I found your job offer because I had a very good experience about X (as you can see in my previous work Y in my CV), and I would be very happy to work again in this environment", or similar.

Take care to have perfect grammar. If you are not a native speaker, find native speaker sentences with Google, and tune them. If you are a native speaker, still commit every possible to make it looking the best.

Note: your chances are better, if you invest double effort into 5 job offers, as if you invest single effort into 10!


P.s. filling such forms makes likely an "over-weighted HR syndrom" at the target company. These companies like to test an irrationally high count of candidates for their open positions. This makes your efforts in-effective, because their recruiting process doesn't target to find good employee effectively; instead it serves the goal of their HR team to show the need for their work.

  • What you're describing (why I'm interested in the role and company and why I'd be a good fit) sounds a lot like what I'd write in a cover letter, which leads me back to: how would I decide what goes here versus in a cover letter? Should I provide both? – OtherwiseFishing Jun 16 at 17:39
  • @OtherwiseFishing Yes. I did not see the form, but on your post I strongly suspect, that it has roughly the same function, like a cover letter. Show that the job is important for you, and avoid writing anything looking red flag. – Gray Sheep Jun 16 at 17:44
  • @OtherwiseFishing Yes, it both are possible, provide both. But if the application means that you need to fill out a form, your chances to the job near zero, because they will likely collect hundreds of candidates and then filter them in many rounds, in a weeks or months long process. In this time, all the HR employee will be able to show, on what important task he worked, and this is the real reason of the "job offer". Copy-paste some sentences from your previous applications, and although I don't say that it doesn't worth the effort (all offers worth), but don't expect too much. – Gray Sheep Jun 16 at 18:57

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