|Introduction To Assessment Centres For Graduate Jobs|
There comes a time in your life at university when the inevitable happens and you have to start thinking about your future and the real world, post-university.
After all, that's what many of you will have been to university for in the first place; to further your knowledge in a subject and give yourself the best chance of making the most of graduate opportunities that could arise as a result of your studies.
Beginning the application process for your graduate job search can be a daunting process. But also an exciting time, too. Initially, it might just be a case of attending milkround get-togethers or careers fairs in graduate recruitment.
If you really have your eye on specific graduate jobs, you might even pick up an application form and further information so that you can browse in your own time to see if the particular company's graduate scheme would suit you.
The commitment required from you comes when you make the decision to apply for certain graduate jobs. You want to be sure you are going into the best possible graduate schemes for your own personal development. And, of course, the company you are applying for graduate jobs with needs to know that, in turn, you are the right person for them.
So, how do companies involved in graduate recruitment choose who they hope is the right person - perhaps you - for their vacant graduate jobs?
You might have brushed up on your interview techniques for getting graduate trainee jobs - and that is certainly not going to do you any harm during your graduate job search - but these days, there are also other techniques that companies are using as they search for the ideal candidates.
So, what are these other techniques that companies are starting to use in their graduate recruitment techniques?
Well, if you have already started browsing around for graduate jobs or attended any fairs, then the chances are you might already be familiar with assessment centres.
The strategy of using assessment centres in recruiting young people into graduate jobs is increasingly being used by companies looking to pull in the best young talent.
So, what are assessment centres? And how do you make sure you put yourself out there as a viable candidate for graduate jobs via this process?
|How Do I Prepare For Graduate Assessment Centres?|
The whole point of your attendance at assessment centres is that you are hoping to be awarded the graduate jobs you have applied for.
As assessment centres are usually the final stage of the application process and you have made it this far, it would be a shame if you haven't put yourself in the best possible position to seize this fantastic opportunity to impress the assessors - and your potential future employers - when you are there, on the day.
And how do you give yourself the best possible chance of impressing the assessors at assessment centres? It's about doing your homework and preparing yourself before the day comes around.
Interview skills Are your interview skills up to scratch? Or do you crumble at the very thought of sitting in front of another person or panel, answering questions about yourself and the job you are hoping to get?
As we have already said in one of the sections above, one of the advantages of assessment centres is that they don't rely purely on the interview.
However, that is not to say an interview is not part of the process. If you have had interviews in the past and you were given feedback afterwards, take this on board so that you can improve your interview skills for your day at the assessment centre.
Ask lecturers and fellow students or graduates who have been through the assessment centre process, the types of questions involved and also what the group interview activities involve.
Even if they have applied for completely different graduate jobs to yourself, it will still give you a rough idea of what to expect.
Research the company and the graduate programme you are applying for Doing your background research on the company and the role you are applying for will not only help you in any interviews at the assessment centre, it will also help you in the assessment centre activities.
You should get a better picture of what the assessors might be looking for.
For example, if the company is a young, vibrant firm who are looking to employ graduates with a fun personality, you can make sure this shows through when you are taking part in tasks.
Before attending assessment centres, the company will usually send you some literature. Make sure you read this and take it all in - it has been sent to you for a reason. Extra background research is not going to do you any harm either.
The literature sent to you will also include an outline of the day, addresses and times for tasks and breaks.
Make sure you know exactly where and when you need to be at each place. If you are late or you get lost, this is not going to give a good impression to your assessors.
Do a trial run to the centre if needs be so that you know journey time (allowing for rush hour traffic) and directions.
Assessment centre psychometric assessment examples and assessment centre group exercise examples If you are not sure what to expect from the activities you will be assessed on for your graduate scheme, it is possible to do some practice psychometric tests and other sessions so that you feel more prepared for the day.
Your local careers centre may run practice sessions that can assist you. And there are also various online resources you can make use of.
We will look at psychometric assessment in more detail in another article.
Is there anything you need to do before you attend the assessment centre? This goes back to reading the literature you are sent beforehand and making sure you read it carefully.
Don't leave the literature to the last minute because, for some assessment centre activities, you might be required to have some things pre-prepared.
This could be items for a presentation or a piece of writing, for example. Make sure you have done everything asked of you before you go to the assessment centre. Otherwise, if you are not prepared, you are going to blow your chances of getting a place on the best graduate schemes.
Do all of your preparations in good time, rather than at the last minute and this should help calm those nerves, too.
If you are fully prepared, you have already put yourself in a good position towards success at the assessment centre. But how else can you make yourself stand out over and above the rest of the students or graduates who will also be in attendance?