Surviving the graduate recruitment season

Graduate Recruitment

The main graduate recruitment season is from February to April where top employers recruit for their graduate programs. Given the large number of employers and the length of time each application takes to prepare this can be an overwhelming and stressful time for graduates.

Preparation before the season begins and organisation throughout can reduce the stress and improve your chances of achieving a successful job outcome.

What types of graduate programs am I interested in?

First of all you need think about what types of graduate programs you’d be interested in applying to for example consulting, auditing, commercial accounting, IT, marketing and economics to name a few.

How can I keep track of all these applications?

Once you have decided the type of programs you’d like to apply to then I’d recommend researching and preparing a list of all the employers offering these programs and their application opening and closing dates. When I was going through the graduate recruitment process I then used this list as a base to keep track of my applications recording my status on each application. It can also be useful to rank the jobs in order of you preference so that if you’re short on time you prioritise the jobs you want the most.

Should I apply to all the open jobs straight away?

Graduatie program applications are very time consuming and often involve submitting a resume, cover letter and answers to specific questions about your motivations and experiences. Based on my preference list I applied to the jobs I wanted first and allowed some time to see how they went before I then had the option of applying to further jobs I was less interested in before they closed.

Get prepared in advance

In the months leading up to the graduate recruitment season I’d recommend to prepare your base resume and cover letter. This can take some time and once you have the base for each it will be far easier to add customisation for specific job applications where required.

It would also be a good idea to start preparing a list of answers to potential STAR technique interview questions. The STAR technique is used for behavioural based interview questions where by you answer them by describing the Situation Task Action and Result. For example questions and how to answer these questions please refer to this link. STAR technique behavioural questions are frequently asked in graduate interviews. The answers to these questions are based on situations you have personally experienced so will be applicable in multiple interviews.

Good luck and for further information on preparing resumes and cover letters and stages of the recruitment process please refer to our articles

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