The Spinifex Recruiting Group of companies which includes Spinifex Australia Pty Ltd, Spinifex Recruiting Pty Ltd (previously Small & Associates Pty Ltd), GWS Personnel Pty Ltd and JHA Recruitment & Staff @ Work Pty Ltd together has over 75 years of experience supplying recruitment services.
To help you get the best chance at winning that next, perfect job; we hope that you will find the advice on this page useful.
Temporary and Contract employees may be payrolled through one of the following companies depending on the industry or the award/agreement used;
- Spinifex Recruiting - weekly timesheets
- GWS Personnel - fortnightly timesheets
- JHA Recruitment - fortnightly timesheets (Councils); weekly timesheets (other clients)
Weekly timesheets must be submitted by 10am Monday.
Fortnightly timesheets are submitted by 10am Monday after the Fortnight end (refer to relevant Pay calendar for details).
If you assignment has ended, submit your timesheet on your last day.
In most cases Wages are lodged with the Banks by close of business Wednesday and should be available to employees on the Thursday.
When a public holiday occurs on the Monday wage payments may be one day later.
Download Résumé Guide and Template
Good Resumes are Written. Great Ones are Edited
After you’ve written your resume, make sure you go back and read it again and again,
tightening it up where necessary. Get a friend or family member to look it over. The
more eye-passes it receives, the better it will be.
- Do the Time Warp
Always structure resumes reverse-chronologically ie. list your most recent job first,
and then go back from there. Typically your career will be progressing rather than
regressing, and you want to list your best achievements first.
- Say It Quick
Try and keep resumes to one or two pages. HR people sometimes read a hundred
resumes a day, and overly long or wordy screeds may be skimmed over.
- Say It Hot
Try to get across that you are a human being rather than a list of bullet points (not
that there’s anything wrong with bullet points). But don’t get too clever.
- Don’t Say What You Did, Say What You Learned
“Duties: Clerical administration, customer relations, boring the pants off people.” Re-phrase
that tired job description by describing how you grew rather than what you
did. “.In this job I gained excellent time management skills and learned how to better
manage my company’s external customers.”
Always do a minor re-write each time you send off a resume based on the job you’re
applying for. Emphasise the more relevant aspects and edit out the unnecessary.
Résumé Nitty Gritty
Your resume is an important document, which a potential interviewer will use to make their first assessment of you. The information below will help you produce a resume that is easy to read and packed with facts.
- Contact details
Add your contact details at the top of the page. Include name, address, phone number, mobile and email. Make sure your name and contact details are on each page just in case the pages get separated after being printed out in hard copy. Only use professional-sounding email addresses. An email address like drunk-n-drunker@ may give the wrong impression.
- Birth date and marital status
You are not obliged to include either your birth date or marital status - it's up to you.
- Lay out
There are many layout styles; our advice is to keep it simple. Pick a font style that is easy to read - not too flowery or ornate. Bold for headings are easy to read. Use dot points if you want, but just the one type. The content of the resume is the most important thing.
- Summarising your strengths
You can do this two ways, either list your “Key Strengths” in dot points or include a section under a heading like “Career Profile”.
- Key Strengths
Use dot points to highlight your key strengths. The aim of the section is to give the person reading your resume a quick snapshot of what you have to offer. For example:
Be specific about what you write, for example “Excellent communication skills” is vague, where as “Excellent written and verbal communication skills acquired through 9 years in customer service positions” is factual.
- High level computer skills including Excel, Word and Powerpoint.
- Five years experience in customer service, both face to face and phone based.
- Career Overview and Career Objective
Including a career overview, career profile or career summary is an optional piece of information. If you choose to include an overview, it should provide the reader with a quick preview of what's in your resume (one paragraph).
A career objective is making a statement of what you want; again, this is optional information. If you are going to including an objective, make it meaningful. For example “to utilise my skills in a professional environment for the mutual benefit of myself and employer” versus “whilst currently working in customer service, my goal is to move into general management”.
- Employment history
Outline your career history in reverse chronological order, ie. your most recent job first. For each entry, follow the structure of employer, job title, employment start and end dates and your duties/responsibilities.
A lot of people tend to only include on-going or permanent jobs and leave out the short term or casual jobs, for example seasonal harvest work. Showing continuity of employment might be important to the interviewer so try and fill any gaps. For example:
- Jan 2006 - May 2007
Various casual labouring/admin/retail based jobs in the XXX area including…
- Jan 2006 - May 2007
Various casual labouring/admin/retail based jobs in the XXX area includingﾅ, I also under took study for the XXX course/certificate (or completed the XXX course/certificate).
- Jan 2006 - May 2007
- Jan 2006 - May 2007
- Description of employer
Giving a short description of your employer might be necessary if their name is unknown or doesn't necessarily describe their business, for example:
The Heritage Lottery Fund - a UK based charity which funds heritage projects to non-profit organisations.
- Responsibilities and My Duties
When you get to the part of listing what you actually did in your previous jobs, you can chose to lead with either “My responsibilities were” or “My duties includedﾅ”. Some people make the mistake of believing the more responsibilities listed the better and some people include the bare minimum - it's your choice, but keep in mind you are trying to express to the reader the full scope of your job.
This is an optional piece of information where you can list the things that you did that you think are particularity noteworthy. For example, staff awards or special commendations. It is important to note that meeting a target is not an achievement – it's doing what you are paid to do, however greatly exceeding a target would be an achievement.
- Education and Training
This section can cover university, TAFE, industry courses, in-house courses and any other professional training. Start with your highest qualification first and then list in reverse date order (most recent first).
- Professional Memberships
Include only those relevant to your career as well as an indication of how active you are in the organisation.
- Referees and References
Your resume should include at least two employment referees. A referee is a person who will be contacted by the interviewer, to provide information regarding your previous employment. Referees are generally your former employers/supervisors; however they can also include co-workers. If you are self-employed, your referees could be your clients or suppliers. A personal referee is a person who will vouch for you in a personal, not professional, capacity. If you are a school leaver with no work history, your can list a former teacher/career advisor as a referee.
On your resume list the referee's name, company, title and phone numbers.
You should confirm with your referees that they are willing to be included on your resume.
A reference is an open letter written by a former employer/supervisor describing your time in their employ. You may choose to add a sentence: “Written references available upon request” if you wish.
- How long should your resume be?
Your resume should be somewhere between 2 and 5 pages long - long enough to show how your career has developed as well as some detail of your achievements, but not long enough to become repetitive or boring. Obviously the less time you have spent in the workforce (eg. school leavers), the shorter your resume will be.
A mature-aged candidate who has spent many years in the workforce may choose to list the most recent 10 - 15 years work history on their resume and then summarise your older work history. For example:
- Previous Work History
1982 – 1997
Labourer / Farm hand
Working for approximately 15 farmers in the Parks, Bogan Gate and Trundle area.
My duties included:
- Shearing, fencing and general labouring
- Chemical handling (not ticketed)
- Operating machinery including: front end loader, backhoe, dozer, tractor and header.
You can include a paragraph under the heading “Other professional/work experience” if you want to mention earlier work of particular interest or relevance. Finally, you can include a sentence such as “Full resume available upon request” to give the interviewer the opportunity to request you full resume.
- Other tips
- Most interviewers prefer resumes submitted electronically, so create your resume in a common program such as MS Word.
- When formatting your resume, ensure there is plenty of white space. Don't place too much information on one page or use graphics and flowery or small fonts that are difficult to read, as they distract from the content.
- Spell check your resume! Remember, it is the first impression the interviewer will have of you. If possible, get someone to proof read your resume to check for any spelling, grammar, layout or typing errors.
- If you are submitting a job application via email, include your resume as an attachment and not embedded (pasted) into the email. Pasting text into an email sometimes distorts the text, making it difficult to read.
- If you are submitting you resume in hard-copy, select quality plain white A4 paper, check the print quality and only print on one side of the paper.
- Unless otherwise stated, you do not need to attach copies of certificates relating to educational and/or professional qualifications (including recent academic transcripts) or any references from previous employers. Instead, you should bring these to your job interview.
Download Cover Letter Guide and Template
Covering letters are generally used when responding to a position that has been advertised through the media. You use a covering letter as a way to introduce yourself to the reader.
Your covering letter should complement your resume by highlighting the most relevant aspects from your work history or training, which relates to the position you are applying for.
How to set out your letter
Your covering letter, like any letter, is made up of contact addresses, date, greeting (salutation), subject line, body and closing.
- Contact Addresses
Your letter will include two contact addresses - first your own and then the recipients. Your contact details should include your name, postal address, phone number and email if appropriate.
You address your letter to the contact person listed in the job advertisement, including their name, job title, company and address.
Include the date of when you write the letter. Write the date as day, month and year ie. 26 January 2007. The date should be placed a couple of spaces before the recipient's address.
- Greeting or Salutation
Your greeting should be “Dear Mr/Mrs/Ms/Dr XXX” and their surname – do not use their first name (ie. Dear Joe). If the contact person is listed by title and not name, for example “The General Manager”, try to find out their name. If this is not possible, you can use the greeting of “To whom it may concern”.
- Subject line
The subject line is included between the greeting and the body, it is one line summarising the purpose of the letter. The subject line should be in bold at start with “RE:” (for regarding). For example, “RE: Application for XXX position”.
- Body of the letter
The body of the letter is made up of five key points:
- What position are you applying for: state the job that you are applying, and when and where the job was advertised. If you are applying for a position which has not been advertised, state the type of position you are applying for.
- What are your qualifications for the position: state your credentials, including present/previous work history or experience, study and relevant skills and abilities.
- Why do you want the position: state why you are seeking the position – if appropriate, knowledge of the company or business may be mentioned at this time.
- List attachments: state that your resume and any other information that has been requested, for example selection criteria, has been attached.
- State how and when you can be contacted for an interview.
Finish your letter with “Yours sincerely” a few blank lines (leave enough room for your signature) and then you name.
Tips for writing your cover letter
- Keep the letter to one A4 page – keep it short and to the point.
- Language: Be sure to make your letter clear and concise. Use everyday language; for example, don't use ‘expedite' when you mean ‘hurry'. Avoid using slang and abbreviations.
- Substance: Look for keywords used in the job advertisement and respond to them. For example, ‘The position requires an outgoing person with demonstrated capacity to work in a team'. The keywords here are outgoing, demonstrated and teamwork. If you show you meet the criteria you increase your chances of an interview.
- Make a draft; when you are satisfied that it reads well get a second opinion by asking a friend to review it.
- Tailor each letter to suit the job you are applying for.
- Type the letter if possible, unless a handwritten letter is requested.
- Check that the letter is correctly set out and contains no typing or spelling errors.
- Sign and date the letter.
- Proof read very carefully!
An invitation to an interview with an employer is an opportunity for them to
learn more about you and your abilities. It is also an opportunity for you to
create a good impression while assessing them, the role and what they are
Our Five Big Interview Tips
- Be Confident
As in all things, in an interview, confidence really is key. If you appear at ease,
you appear as someone who can take control of a situation. Don’t drink too much
tea or coffee beforehand, get a good sleep the night before and don’t be afraid to
take a moment before answering big questions.
- Sweat the Small Stuff
Remember to get the basics right: Dress smart – suits are best – and make a
good first impression. Also, be on time.
- Think About Their Questions
Find out as much about the company as you can: What’s their position? What’s
their history? Who are their competitors? Based on these things, figure out what
sort of a person they’re going to want and the sort of questions they’re going to
ask to find that person.
- Think About Your Questions
Without appearing over confident, don’t be afraid to ask your own questions ie.
“Where do you think you’ll be in five years?” and “If I take this job, where could I
be in five years?” An interview is a two-way street, so don’t be afraid to use this
opportunity to make sure this is the best job for you.
- Remember the Purpose of the Interview
The purpose of the interview is for the interviewer to find the person that can bring
the necessary skills to the vacant position. So when you’re talking about your
skills, talk about them in the context of the job you’re interviewing for. It’s a
simple change: Instead of saying “I’m a great organiser,” say “With me at your
company, you’d have a great organiser on board.” Small changes like this in the
way you speak indicate your confidence and ability, and set you apart from the