• Question: What advice would give to someone searching for a job?

    Asked by 995satm36 to Helen, Hollie, Phil, Stephen, Sylwia on 14 Mar 2018.
    • Photo: Sylwia Nikel

      Sylwia Nikel answered on 14 Mar 2018:


      I think if it was me that would have a chance to give advice to myself in the past when I was at school (that would be really cool btw), I would say go to career fairs and spend some good time on writing your CV to stand out. I would also say to register yourself with professional bodies in a discipline that interests you. I believe this gives quite a good way of making contacts and learning about the companies that do the kind of thing you are interested in.

    • Photo: Hollie Heard

      Hollie Heard answered on 14 Mar 2018:


      Don’t dismiss anything. The skills you have can be applied to many different job roles and you might be more suited to a role than you think, or have skills that can be used in a different area than where you are looking. I never thought I’d be working in materials like I am now but that’s the interesting journey I’ve taken so far. I completely agree with what Sylwia has said too, get involved in careers fairs and professional bodies, got to events and most importantly meet and talk to people! You are often quite likely to hear about a job or a company through someone and the network of people you have around you. Take me for example, I was told about and applied for, my current job by my old teacher who used to work with my current boss! I hope that’s at least a bit of useful advice, if there’s anything else you’d like to know please just ask.

    • Photo: Stephen Williams

      Stephen Williams answered on 19 Mar 2018:


      There is no doubt about it getting a job can be tough so be prepared for the worst and hope for the best. I don’t want to put you off job hunting but if it takes a while then at least you will know that that’s how it can be.

      In my experience it typically takes between 2 to 3 months to get a job from when I start looking. Interviews are never easy as each interviewer will have their pet likes and dislikes so they might not make you an offer for the most odd reasons. Even selecting the right clothes can be difficult as I once turned up in a suit to an interview where the interviewer was wearing a t-shirt and shorts – then I felt overdressed and not at all comfortable. Engineering and the tech industries can be particularly relaxed about dress so these days I would go with smart casual. Of course other industries especially where you would be meeting customers would expect potential employees to dress formally in a suit and maybe not just for the interview.

      Its always better to be prepared so think about what they are likely to ask you and have answers ready. I think being honest at an interview is good policy as otherwise you can caught out and that is always game over. And people like honesty, it can be disarming. To a greater extent than is generally admitted an interviewer will consider how an applicant would fit in with everybody else already in her/his team. As you can already see there are many variables which you can never second guess so very often you just have to put your best foot forward. A well prepared CV will definitely help to get you an interview but expect the interviewer to ask you about what you have said on it – so again have answers ready.

      I hope I haven’t put you off as I don’t want to and given that you thought to ask this question you are already ahead of the field. If your first interview goes well and it probably will then great if it doesn’t then think of it as a learning experience which will make you better prepared the next time.

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