Now that 2014 has kicked off it’s time to get yourself prepared for what is set to be a big and exciting few months of the year!
The graduate recruitment season typically runs from the 1st February through to the 30th April and it is during this time that the majority of the large organisations open the doors to graduates to apply for a position.
So, let me ask you, are you fully prepared to ensure you give yourself every chance of landing your perfect graduate role?
Here are 6 tips to ensure you are fully prepared for the upcoming graduate recruitment season.
1) Research the kind of organisations you would like to work for
The first thing you will need to do is have clarity on what kind of organisations you would like to work for.
Clarity is everything. Having clarity will help you to tailor your application and enable you to showcase your skills and abilities more effectively to the job that you are applying for.
Taking a ‘spray and pray’ approach to applying for graduate jobs is like using a shotgun to hit your target instead of a sniper rifle. The shotgun sprays ammo all over the place maybe catching a piece of the target but not very successfully, whereas the sniper rifle zooms in and hits your target dead center. Choose your weapon carefully as the wrong choice can prove costly in terms of quality, time, effort and energy.
Instead, spend greater time on fewer applications and make them more effective. You really should only be applying for organisations that you would really like to be working for or that you feel will give you the greatest launch to your career.
To help you kick start your search, you can view our list of 10 things you should look for in every graduate program.
Be sure to also bookmark our graduate programs page as it is going to be updated over the next few weeks with all the latest information.
2) Finalise your resume
It’s time to dust off the old resume, do some tweaking and move it from the draft basket to the complete basket.
As we enter the graduate recruitment season you want to make sure that your resume is fully prepared and ready to go and that you do not have to make any big changes at the last minute before an application deadline.
Leaving your resume to the last minute can add to your own stress levels and can lead to a resume of lower quality that doesn’t represent you as effectively as you would like.
Instead, take the time now to write your resume and finalise it. Check out our guide on how to write a resume to get started. If you need help with this important part of the process, please don’t hesitate to check out our resume writing services.
Remember, before submitting your applications you may need to tweak your resume to make it suitable for the job at hand.
3) Prepare a draft cover letter
Similar to preparing your resume well in advance, you also want to make sure that you have a draft cover letter prepared.
Your cover letter will need to be tailored for each application that you make, however you will be able to prepare a draft cover letter with the essential information.
To help you prepare your draft, check out our guide on how to write a cover letter.
Once you have your draft cover letter ready, you can quickly and easily edit, add or subtract information that is relevant to the role and employer that you are applying for.
4) Practice psychometric tests
Now is the perfect time to practice some psychometric tests.
Before University kicks off for the year it’s wise to spend the time investing in your success by practicing these tests.
Practicing psychometric tests will help you to get into the state of job hunting and will help you understand what to expect as you progress throughout the application process.
To get started, check out our guide to psychometric tests and practice taking some of the tests today.
5) Prepare yourself for the interview
Again, it’s important to not leave your preparation for the interview to the last minute.
Everyone will have an interview at some stage of the application process, perhaps at the beginning as a telephone or video interview and again at the end with a final face-to-face interview.
Think about the experiences you have had in the past few years that demonstrate your knowledge, skills and abilities most effectively. Think through experiences that relate to the different areas of competency, such as innovation, communication, self-discipline, relationship-building, resilience etc.
6) Schedule dates in your diary
The final tip for successfully preparing for the graduate recruitment season is to ensure you have key dates locked into your diary.
Key dates could include:
- Application deadlines
- Careers fairs
- University workshops
- Networking events
- Online events
- Employer open days
It’s also wise to set yourself some block time to complete steps 1-5 above.
To find out application deadlines, head on over to our graduate programs page and be sure to bookmark it as it’s going to be updated over the next few weeks with all the latest information.
Take Action Now
Now that you know the key elements of preparing for the graduate recruitment season, take 2 minutes now to schedule time in your diary where you will actually complete each of the steps outlined above.
Schedule the following times now for some time in the next 2 weeks to complete your preparation:
- Researching organisations – 3hrs
- Resume preparation – 3hrs
- Cover letter preparation – 1hr
- Psychometric testing practice – 3hrs
- Interview preparation – 3hrs
- Scheduling dates in your diary – 30minutes
Use these times as a guide and ensure you actually spend quality time getting it done.
How prepared are you for this graduate recruitment season?