Key selection criteria – The most important aspect of a job application

When checking job posting, most people tend to neglect section where company lists all the requirements. Instead, we are quick to apply to anything whether it’s a good fit for us or not. One of the best examples is key selection criteria.

Also known as job selection criteria, this is a list of demands company has pertaining to employees’ skills. This might include a certain number of years spend working in the industry, ability to work with certain tools, machines or software, dedication to the team and so on.

Although often neglected, key selection criteria is the most important part of your job application and here is why.


The crucial thing about key selection criteria


Oftentimes candidates think that key selection criteria are too harsh. Truth be told, big companies and public services have a lot of requirements from their employees. Sometimes, recruiters may go overboard with their list of demands and the whole application process may seem a bit ridiculous.

However, you have to keep in mind that big organizations are focused on getting the best talent possible. Such rigorous demands are in place in order to dissuade anyone who is not good enough. In fact, in some cases ideal candidates don’t have all the necessary skills but might have one of the skills that a company is specifically looking for.

That being said, candidate has to pay special attention to:


  • Track record
  • Ability to work with software, tools or machines
  • Price


While education and experience are important, they are more of an approximation. Companies are unwilling to hire people who don’t have any experience or proper knowledge to do a job. But that doesn’t mean they won’t consider a person with 4 years of experience if they are looking for someone with 5. All the more reason to make your resume and cover letter a compelling read for your prospective employer. You can learn how to blow them away with your application using this post from Cultivated Culture on cover letters.

There are several things that are crucial during the process and it usually comes down to the actual ability to perform a job and asking for a reasonable salary. Anyway, you need to present your data in the right way, without false claims. Otherwise, you will not be able to perform what was asked from you.


The right way to answer key selection criteria

In some cases, candidate is unable to properly present data. This is especially true for certain criteria such as “ability to work as a part of a team” or “ability to handle stressful situation”. This is where STAR model comes into play.

STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action and Result. It is used to describe certain business situations in a more colorful and realistic way. For example, it is not enough to say that you’re able to “think on your feet”. Instead, you need to give an example how you did it at your previous job.

Here are some basics that will help you use the model:


  • First start with the situation. Explain what happened and what had to be done
  • Task is used to describe what company expected from you and what was your role during the situation
  • Action refers to what you did to accomplish your task. During this step, it is very important to show how you had composure and what kind of decisions you made in order to pull it through.
  • Lastly, you analyze the results


STAR model is a good way to make your case. It will help you overcome key selection criteria thus showing that you are the right person for the job. If you are not sure how to write it, you can always rely on a resume writing company to help you out.

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