Business and Marketing student Alice, who is just starting her placement year, sets out here her top 5 tips for successful placement search.
When applying or preparing for any application or interview it is vital to prepare yourself, with both company and role research. This is a great tactic for setting yourself apart from other candidates and in an employer’s eye often extremely important as there is a significant need for understanding of the skills required for the role. Start with basic history research of the company moving further to understanding the company ethos and values (matching these to your own, nobody wants to be stuck in a company with values they can’t connect with!)
Read and re-read the job description and skills specific within the role, although this seems like blatant common sense it is often missed that the job role description holds many clues to the questions you are likely to be asked during the interview process. In many instances an employer will devise both job description and a set of interview questions in correspondence to the desired skill set at the same time.
Match your skills and previous experience to the specific skills identified within the job brief, providing an example of an instance you have demonstrated each of the skills! This will allow you to provide physical evidence of having the required skill set needed.
Relax and smile! Over the phone or face to face interviewing. Believe it or not a smile can even be heard over the phone, in a sense, it will help create an upbeat positive tone of interview. Employers are more likely to remember a smiling face, enthusiasm is a great attribute and will communicate a sense of ease in a stressful situation.
More than ever employers are following interviews with further research on their candidates using LinkedIn. It is vital to update all aspects of your LinkedIn, with the fact you are a placement seeking student at the forefront of your profile. Reach out to relevant connections to increase your credibility, including endorsements, up to date qualifications and a suitable profile picture. Sheffield Hallam university offer fantastic support on getting your placement profile ready!
Successful or unsuccessful, it is always useful to receive feedback even if successful in the interviewing process. Contact the employer and ask politely for feedback on which aspects you performed well in and what can be improved upon. I can guarantee there will be sometime later in your future you will use both positive and negative feedback to learn from and will be grateful for the information.