CV & Interview Tips for Graduates
Whether you have recently graduated from university, or you are awaiting the big day – CONGRATULATIONS! Graduation is a brilliant achievement, and for many, now is the time to start making a plan to enter the world of work. No matter what kind of career you have chosen to pursue (you may not have even decided yet!) we have some CV and interview tips to get you started.
Personal statement – this is your sales pitch and the opportunity for you to showcase what you believe makes you different than every other graduate out there. Another option is to use this to focus on the career you are looking for, and why.
Key achievements – what have you done that makes you different to other candidates out there? This could be a Duke of Edinburgh Award (or any award for that matter), volunteer work, receiving recognition from your peers or anything else you feel is significant. This is the area of your CV that not just demonstrates why you are good at something, but why the hiring manager needs you in their team!
Is your CV search-friendly? – If you are posting your CV on job boards, you need to have a think exactly how easy it is to find your CV. Think about the types of words that a recruiter would use to find a CV for the job you are looking for. For example, if you are looking for sales, you may want to consider where in your CV you could add search terms such as business development, sales, account development, and so on.
Hobbies and interests – this section tells the reader a lot about what you are like as a person. Try to highlight interests that are relevant to you as a person and best represent how you would describe your personality, as this may help in finding you the best work environment suited to you.
Is your CV relevant to the application? It is a good idea to tailor your CV to suit the role you are applying for, so that it is evident that your application looks carefully considered and personal to the reader. Try to highlight skills from your education and experience that may stand out as relevant to the role.
Research, research, research! You will be asked what you know about the job, the company and the industry. By understanding these in depth, it will allow you to sell yourself more effectively by being able to give examples relevant to the role and company that you are interviewing with.
Don’t be late – get to the location 30 minutes early; this will allow for any extra traffic or wrong turns. If possible, try to do a “dry run” the night or morning before, to gauge what time you need to leave. The ideal time to go into the interview venue is 10-15 minutes before your meeting, as being too early or too late can give the wrong impression.
Prepare yourself - be ready to answer questions on your key strengths, along with where you feel you will require support and development. For each of these answers, try to have an example of where you have demonstrated this skill, what you have done, or what you are prepared to do to improve.
Ask lots of questions – make sure that when you walk away from the interview that you know absolutely everything about the company, the role, what would be expected of you and what you can expect in return from the business. Not only will this demonstrate your interest in the company, but you will also know if the role and business is the right one for you.
Be yourself – people who give answers that they think that the interviewer wants to hear or bends the truth to get the position, talk themselves into the wrong job which is of no benefit to anyone. You need to make sure that this is the right role for you and that you are the right person for them, and to do this you need to give the best, most honest representation of yourself!
Get in touch
If you would like to discuss any of the above in more detail, or you are a graduate looking for an exciting career, then please contact either myself or the Internal Recruitment Team here at Evolution on 01925 283 116.