Making Cents

words | Justin Figueredo - Financial Analyst

With summer vacation just around the corner, now’s the time to start looking for a summer job or internship to beef up your resume, acquire extra spending cash, or stash your earnings into savings. Regardless of the reason, applying for a new job or internship involves the same important information every time. Here is what you’ll need to create or gather:

•   Resume – This document, typically written in word processing software, lists chronologically all your previous work experience, volunteering, education, awards/honors, and special skills or certifications.

•   Cover letter – A cover letter usually accompanies your resume in an application. It should be a quick snapshot of who you are, what you bring to the position you’re applying for, and why you want the position. A great cover letter is to the point and intrigues the hiring manager just enough for him/her to then look at your resume.

•   Job/internship application – This refers to the paper or electronic application that is required to fill out when applying. You’ll need a lot of your personal information handy like your home address, email, phone number, references’ contact info (people who would vouch for your work ethic, character, or skills), and your work availability.

After you land the job/internship, you will need a form of i.d. and should be prepared to fill out the following forms for employment:

•   IRS W-4 Form – This federal form basically tells your new employer how much federal income taxes to withhold from each paycheck. This is a bit tricky, so your best bet is to do your homework online so as to know what you will be writing down.  The lower the total number you list on your W-4, the more taxes that will be withheld each paycheck usually leading to a tax refund after you file your taxes for the year. The higher the total number you list on your W-4 means you get more money per paycheck, but you will likely owe taxes to the federal government when you file your taxes for the year.

•   Direct Deposit Form – This form will easily and conveniently enable your new employer to transfer money from their bank account to yours. This eliminates the need for you to receive a check or cash you would need to deposit yourself. You will need your bank account information or wherever you want your wages to be deposited - including the full name on the account, the bank account number, and the bank routing number. You can always check with your bank to see where to find the info needed.

Best of luck with your job or internship search! At the end of the day, just go out there, be confident, and have fun in the process. It’s more about the journey than the destination!

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