Job Advice

10 TIPS FOR JOB SEEKERS

1. You’ve got 6 seconds

On average, a recruiter will spend around 6 seconds reviewing a CV before deciding to read it fully. That means it’s vital you use simple, easy-to-read formatting. Be sure to target your content towards what is asked in the job brief! This may mean you need to revise your Cv before each job application.

2. Sell yourself in your CV

Add your relevant achievements that set you apart from the crowd. Instead of merely stating what you did, where possible, complement this by specifying what effect or favourable result you achieved. Remember, nothing sells better than facts and figures!

3. Prepare some responses before you go into your interview

Practice responses to typical interview questions that seek to uncover your career achievements, ambition, long-term goals, strengths and weaknesses. Why are you the best person for the job? Of course, be careful your responses do not appear too scripted.

4. First impressions count

Do we even need to say it? Be on time and dress appropriately. If you are nervous, adopting a confident posture will assist with projecting a confident tone of voice. Always offer a firm handshake, maintain eye contact and remember to smile.

5. Read the job description. Twice.

Set aside some time to carefully consider the job brief and what the company is looking for. Print it off, make notes and take it into your interview. Not only will you show that you prepared for the interview, your notes can make useful prompts for questions at the end.

6. Question the interviewer

Questions are a great way of showing you have considered the role and are genuinely interested in the opportunity. Ask about the specific tasks in the role, team culture, company vision and clarify how these fit with your own motivations. What does success look like? What do they expect you to achieve in the first 1-3 months?

7. Always be positive

Avoid speaking negatively about your previous employers or co-workers. Be honest about influences affecting your career but refrain from dredging up lengthy horror stories.

8. Just answer the question!

Stay on track with your responses and try not to waffle. If you are unsure, say so in simple terms. This is better than getting caught out pretending.

9. Your online impression

In the age of ‘online everything’ it is common for employers to search for applicants’ profiles on popular social media at some stage during the hiring process. Be mindful that your online activity can have an impact on the impression you make. Review what personal information, photos and comments are available to the general public before you commence applying for jobs.

10. Get a job fit for you

Changing jobs is a challenging time. Working with a professional recruiter can help you uncover job opportunities best suited to your skills and experience. A good recruiter will also help you refine your interview skills and assist with presenting your best qualities to potential employers.

Five typical recruitment consultant job interview questions and how to answer

1. Can you tell me a little bit about yourself?

Whether one is interviewing for a recruitment consultant position or other recruitment HR roles, this is a basic question that comes up almost all of the time. Companies want to hire individuals that offer a good fit with their ethos, so be sure to develop a reasonable understanding of what the business is and what it’s values are before going to interview.

It is essential that job candidates answer it truthfully but keep the responses concise, on topic and full of relevant information. This is the perfect time to sum up any and all educational and employment experience in just a few sentences. Continue with a few more sentences about personal passions that are relevant to the position at hand. Don’t bother including any irrelevant personal information when answering this question.

2. Why are you interested in working for this company?

This question may be phrased in different ways, so be prepared. Businesses are not interested in individuals that simply want a pay cheque – they want team members that will contribute in a positive way. It goes without saying that this is most easily achieved when candidates have a genuine interest in the work.

In preparation for a job interview, one should always conduct research on the company in advance. When this question comes up, it is a great opportunity to focus on a fact about the company that is of particular interest.

Use this fact as a reason for wanting to work with this company and be sure to detail any relevant experience, skills, and interests within the response. For individuals looking for trainee recruitment consultant positions or HR assistant roles, a healthy interest in the dynamics of the company would be considered an essential part of the hiring criteria anyway – so turn up prepared.

3. What is your greatest strength?

This is a great question and allows hiring managers to get a feel for the talents, strengths, and skills a potential employee has. The response to this question tells the hiring manager what will make a candidate a great addition to the team, so a well-thought out answer is an absolute must.

Thrive under pressure? Then let them know. Brilliant problem solver? Include that. This is a chance to shine, but remember to have plenty of examples to back up the claims.

4. What is your greatest weakness?

Most interviewees actually dread this question, and rightly so. Potential employers are well aware of the fact that job candidates are people; so knowing their faults allows them to get a bigger picture of that person. When answering this question, it is easy to draw a lot of negative attention to oneself. Avoid that by providing a positive but honest answer.

Think carefully about this question. Everyone has a weakness, whether it is focusing too much on the details or always saying yes or prioritising smaller work projects. The best response should include a small, work-related flaw that won’t mean that the interviewer’s interest is terminated there and then. Be sure to include the efforts made to manage this ‘fault’ and turn it into something positive.

5. Why should I hire you?

This may seem like a trick question to many job candidates, but it really tells the potential employer what sets this person apart from the rest. This question may be difficult to practise ahead of time, as often the response is best phrased based on the flow of the interview itself. Listen and learn throughout, then use that information to ask the interviewing manager what they are looking for and play to that response in a relevant and honest way.

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