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Start the New Year off right if you’re planning on applying for a Grad Scheme

ManpreetDhesi8 January 2016

Highly sought after by UCL students, graduate schemes have been seen as being the gold medal upon completion of your degree. However only a limited number make it through as competition is tough. On average, there are 85 applications for every single graduate scheme position. 

Myth: a degree will be enough. Employers are now looking for more from students. HSBC noted: “We recruit up to 1,500 graduates on to one of our 70 graduate programmes around the world. For those jobs, globally, we receive around 100,000 applications. As 90% have a 2.2 or a 2.1, it therefore takes something extra to stand out.”

The conversion rate from landing that internship in the company you want to work for to securing a place on their graduate scheme can be as high as 70-80% in some companies! Every company wants the best candidates, so do apply early. Some may fill positions whilst recruitment is still happening. Don’t leave it to the last minute to apply. Also, come and get your application reviewed by one of our specialist application advisors.

Only 7-10% of graduates who enter the workplace do so through a formal graduate scheme, so how do you maximise your chances at success? Preparation is incredibly important. We’ve put together a handy timeline of things to do, whether you’re a first year or a finalist who hasn’t even thought about what you are going to do when you finish.

UCL Study Level Spring Term (January – April 2016) Summer Term(May – August 2016) Autumn (2016)(Sept 2016 onwards)
First/Second year going into Penultimate year > Start looking at careers/jobs you may be interested through Careers Tagged

> Clarify Visa options in the UK (if international students)

> Research jobs in home country or country you wish to work in (UCL login needed to view this link)

 

> Apply for internships/gain work experience during the summer through UCL JobOnline > Career Planning

> Attend Careers Fairs and Employer Events

 

Penultimate going into Final year  > Gain relevant work experience either through internships or experience within that sector

> Identify your hard skills from your soft skills and compare this against their competencies and develop your skills

> Apply for internships for summer through UCL JobOnline

> Attend our Global Citizenship Employability Programme
 

> Attend our Focus on Management course

> Look at company websites, many open applications for their graduate schemes between July – September.

> Gain work experience during the summer

 

> Career Planning

> Attend Careers Fairs and Employer Events

> Identify Graduate Schemes & Apply

Final year becoming a Recent Graduate > Apply for graduate level jobs / schemes – some companies have rolling deadlines. You can find most of these via the companies website or through UCL JobOnline > Apply for graduate level jobs via UCL JobOnline

> Target unfilled Graduate Schemes via the companies websites or through UCL JobOnline

> Attend the UCL Jobs Market 2016 event (more information coming soon)

> Join UCL Careers Graduates  (once your course finishes)

> Follow steps above

 

 

 

We’re also open all year round so whether you want to talk about career options, have an application checked or have gained an interview and want to practice, we can help. Our website has a comprehensive amount of information for each step and you can pop-in personally and speak to one of our information team who can help.

And even if a graduate scheme doesn’t float your boat, we can help you find your future in your chosen career path as a vast number of our alumni go on to work within Charities, NGOs, Media, Law and Science sectors.

Good luck!

Write an amazing CV for the Charity/NGO sector

ManpreetDhesi3 March 2014

This post originally appeared on the Develop your Career blog

So you’ve decided to apply for that position at a Charity/NGO, but you’re stuck, blankly staring at your CV, not knowing how to best get across your experience or even if it will make the cut. You’ve got this nagging stat in the back of your head, that on average less than 10% of CVs make it through the first stage of the recruitment process.

Here are some quick tips on writing a CV for the Charity/NGO sector that can help give you a fighting start:

  • Make sure it’s no longer than 2-sides and know that the first half of your CV is key – it is what the recruiter will look at first and if they aren’t intrigued to read further, they won’t! Note: Some employers such as the UN might take a longer CV, so check and do your research before hand especially on the position you are applying for.
  • Read the person specification and tailor your CV against the competencies they are looking for. Most recruiters score CVs against a criterion and if you haven’t clearly labelled or demonstrated those competencies, your application won’t go any further. For example, if you are applying for a researcher role, make sure your research section has enough of the core competencies matched so you are ticking all their initial boxes.
  • A recruiter only spends on average 7 – 30 seconds looking at each application initially. Make sure you have a powerful punch at first glance. Get some friends to review or even get your application checked by your careers service.
  • When you are explaining why you want to work for them, ensure it is tailored appropriately and highlight what you can offer them. No one wants to read: “I want to work for Save the Children because I can’t wait to touch all children!”
  • Make sure it is a consistent format and if possible send it across in a PDF format – it doesn’t lose its formatting.
  • Get someone to triple check for spelling and grammar mistakes!
  • Demonstrating evidence is easier than you think. Core Humanitarian competencies are often:
  1. Understanding humanitarian contexts and applying humanitarian principles
  2. Achieving Results
  3. Managing yourself in a pressured and changing environment
  4. Developing and maintaining collaborative relationships
  5. Operating safely and securely at all times
  6. Demonstrating leadership

Once you’ve broken these down, finding examples are easier than you think.

Realised you haven’t got one of these competencies?  Build them up by:

  1. Volunteering whilst at university
  2. Internships during the summer breaks
  3. Reading
  4. E-learning
  5. Networking/attending free talks at ODI
  6. Training
  7. Transferring your skills from any sector
  8. Waitressing – pressure
  9. Childcare – operating safely
  10. Enhancing your knowledge of cultures – you can do all of this without even leaving the country!

Once you’re confident that you can nail your CV, come in and get it checked by an applications advisor who can give you more specific tips against the person specification and job description.

Good luck!