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Career Planning and Advice Program

Resources to support job applications, including resume and application letter writing and preparing for interviews.

What are selection criteria?

Resume-icon.jpgSome job applications require candidates to address the selection criteria outlined in the position description. Addressing the selection criteria helps employers identify how suitable an applicant is for the position.  

Selection criteria outline the key skills, knowledge, experience, qualifications and capabilities required for the position. You must clearly show that you meet each of the essential criteria, and support your claims with examples of your qualifications and experience. Employers will shortlist applicants for interview based on how well they address the selection criteria.

Selection criteria should be addressed in a separate document. Write each criterion out in full and use each one as a separate heading, explaining underneath how you satisfy it. Ensure you provide lots of examples to demonstrate how you meet each criterion.

STAR Formula

 A useful guide for addressing each criterion is the STAR formula.

First think of a challenging situation that best describes your ability to address the criterion, then apply the following formula:


Provide context and background. Where and when? 


Describe the task or problem that was solved. What needed to be done? What challenge did you face?


Explain what action you took to solve the problem. What did you do and how did you do it? This should account for 80% of your answer.


Identify the outcome achieved as a result of your actions. This may incorporate feedback from supervisors, work colleagues or others.

Frequently sought skills, attributes and abilities

  • A proven ability to work effectively within a team environment
  • A proven ability to use your initiative and work unsupervised
  • Well-developed oral and written communication skills
  • A proven ability to establish work priorities, meet deadlines and maintain quality in a heavy workload
  • Excellent networking skills
  • Sound knowledge of practices and procedures relating to the job area
  • Proven proficiency in a range of administrative services, including the use of office equipment, keyboarding skills, word-processing and relevant software packages

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