In job seeking, companies usually require you to fill out an application form during the hiring process. Such a form asks for your personal and other specific information related to the work applied. In filling it out, you might come across a section that asks for the date of your availability for work.
Here is what you should put for “date available” on your job application.
If you can work immediatly
Knowing that you can work without delay, what should you put in the “date available” section?
If you can only put a date in the blank, you should respond with the closest date you are comfortably ready for work. However, if the section allows you to answer without format restrictions, you can respond by writing “available immediately.” This answer lets your employer know that you can work as soon as possible.
If your are not immediatly avaible to work
For job applicants who are not available to work right away, you can specify your availability date in your job application form. For instance, you can respond with available to start on <specific date> or start after <specific date> in the date available section. You can also just simply write the date of your availability.
What things should I consider before answering the “date available” section?
Even if you want to start working right now and then for the company you are applying for once they hire you, there are certain things that you should consider before responding to the date available section of your job application form.
If you are currently working and have applied for a position in another company, you are likely not available for that position. Most employers will require you to serve a notice period before you can officially leave.
A notice period allows employers to find a suitable candidate that can assume your role in the company. The length of the notice period is usually two weeks for regular employees. You will need to render more time if you hold a significant position that requires training your replacement.
This scenario suggests that you cannot immediately leave your company once hired by the other one you have applied for. You should consider the details of your notice period stipulated in your contract before deciding what to write as your availability date in your job application.
Having a readily available schedule for a job does not necessarily mean that you are mentally prepared to work. You might want to take a break for a certain period since you might have just recently graduated or resigned from your former workplace.
Consider your mental state in choosing an available date for your first day at work. Being mentally comfortable when you start working allows you to be more confident and efficient in performing your new tasks.
The location of the job you are applying for might be in another state or country. The time for preparation and relocation to another place are factors you need to account for in choosing your available date for work.
Moving out requires time, money, and energy. Sometimes, this factor alone can be the only reason for your delay. Moreover, you should also consider the time you need to adjust to your new environment and culture.
Why do employers want to know the date of your availability in the first place?
Resignations and termination of contracts are not uncommon for companies. In these situations, employers will have to fill vacant positions by hiring qualified individuals to avoid crippling company operations. With this, employers might need qualified candidates who can start working right away.
By asking the applicants for the date of their availability for work, either through application forms or interviews, employers can select who among the candidates can assume the duties and responsibilities that come with the position.
For employers who do not urgently need to fill job vacancies, knowing your date of availability allows them to avoid scheduling conflicts between your specified date and their preferred date for you to start working.
Employers prefer to hire individuals who can work for their company as soon as possible. As an applicant, being available for work when the company needs you gives you an advantage over other applicants of similar qualifications. However, you should also consider your situation before committing your availability to a job offer.
Rushing your transition to work for any company can have a backlash on you, especially if you fail to adhere to your submitted available-to-work date. Not only does it show that you are unorganized, but it may also lead to a lasting negative impression. Answering your availability date truthfully is the safest and most rewarding action.