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The Oracle

Should I submit my training contract applications early?

updated on 25 June 2019

Dear Oracle

I know that the main deadline for training contract applications is 31 July, but with around six weeks to go, I’ve still got loads of time left to fill out my forms, right?

The Oracle replies

Wrong! This activity, as in many other areas of your life, is not one to leave until the last minute. Our friends at AllHires agree, as their answer here shows:

"We hear many agonising stories from candidates around deadline time. Many have missed the deadline, not completed applications fully or made mistakes. Often the reports we get are of the candidate's screen freezing, page not loading and/or internet connection dying, all at the last moment. By taking your time, and not making and submitting an application in a last-hour rush before the deadline, these problems would most likely not occur or at least not become such an issue that you'd miss the deadline.

“We are often asked, 'Can you reopen an application form for me to submit after the deadline?'. This isn't down to us, but mostly the reply we get from firms is no! How would you feel if you and thousands of others had submitted on time, only to find out that firms were allowing candidates to submit past the deadline? Clearly there are sometimes exceptions but the over-riding message is submit on time to avoid disappointment.

“Another popular cry for help is, 'I spent so much time on this application in the weeks before the deadline, but I logged in to submit and missed the deadline'. We know it's frustrating, but if you're spending huge amounts of time on an application, it's worth logging in with plenty of time to preview your application form and to submit. AllHires is timed exactly to GMT; make sure your clock, watch or time piece is correct!

“Last, but not least, if you have already submitted training contract applications, you can add supplementary information by logging in on the firm's application form homepage. For this, the message remains the same; don't wait until the last minute.

“So please don't make us (or, more importantly, you) sad by missing the deadline. There are many advantages to submitting well in advance."