In an attempt to improve my job applications I have been trawling this forum for advice. In relation to executive summaries, I had actually done something similar in my recent applications. I constructed a table to the requirements of the person spec and then filled in my skills/experience/knowledge etc. My questions are: 1. Is the summary you advise in addition to the two pages of A4 commonly prescribed for a personal statement? If so, won?t panels throw out the application for not following the instructions to the letter and, if not, won?t that restrict the personal statement to too small an area to be effective? 2. The example you give for John Smith only fits on to one side of A4 by reducing the font size to 9. Furthermore your example lists 15 requirements whereas the last post I applied for needed 28 rows; I would have to reduce the font size to 7 or less to squeeze it onto one A4 page. A post I am currently interested in lists 25 essential requirements and 11 desirables. This is a more typical amount than your example. There is also no mention of how they will be identified so would presumably all need addressing in the application. What?s the solution to this? 3. My applications that have included a summary, either as a mind map or a table, have not been successful even though I have methodically shown that I meet all the essential and desirable specs (if I don?t, I don?t apply). Panels are clearly looking for something they haven?t specified that I don?t have. Any ideas? I also followed your other suggestions such as including my name in the document title, addressing the head teacher by name, including key words from the school?s ethos, filling in every section and not writing ?see CV?, using a professional font etc.