When you join a recruitment agency they’ll usually invite you into the office for an informal chat. This is an opportunity for them to learn all about you so that they can match you with the right job and end client. It’s important that you think carefully about your short and long term goals and give the agency as much information as possible about the opportunities you’re looking for. This might relate to the industry you’d like to work within, but it could also cover the kind of companies you’d like to work for, or the kind of assignments you’d prefer. Here are some questions to consider that your recruiter might also ask you.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?
Although the meeting with your recruiter isn’t necessarily an interview, you should prepare yourself in a similar way. The kind of roles you’re looking for now aren’t necessarily where you see yourself in the future. Maybe you’re looking for a role where you can gain experience, a more senior position, or temporary work to fund your studies in a certain area. It could be that you’d like to work for a particular company and you’re looking for an opportunity to get a foot in their door. You don’t have to have your job title worked out, but having an idea of your career goals will help a recruiter take this into consideration and steer you onto the right path. This question could be phrased in various different ways, such as “what are your career aspirations?” or “what’s your ideal job?”
What kind of position are you looking for?
Once you’ve thought about the above question, it’s useful to try and break it down a little. This question doesn’t just cover the kind of role you’re looking for, but whether your preference is for permanent, temporary or contract work. For example, if your aspiration is to work at a big-name organisation like BFI or Buzzfeed, but you don’t have much experience, maybe you’d consider an internship or temping there first. For those who are further on in the contractor game, companies like this are always looking for consultants for special projects – all these options can end up leading to permanent positions.
What are your key skills and experience?
Your key skills are what separate you from the competition, so think carefully about these and avoid a generic list. It’s not just about your skills and qualifications, but how your personal combination of skills can offer something unique. If you’ve used your IT skills on a particular project, you should think about how that practical experience developed those skills. Similarly, if a personal interest led you towards gaining a professional skill, think about how this represents you to an employer. Many people graduate from university with similar qualifications and go on to gain the same industry-specific skills. It’s your background story that weaves together your personal skills and provides your unique position.
What kind of company do you want to work for?
For some people, it’s less about a specific role and more about the kind of company they want to work for. Many skills are transferable within a company, and people often move between departments. Maybe you’re willing to be flexible about your position for the right kind of organisation. For example, many people want to work for a charity or within the public sector. Equally, you could be looking for an opportunity with a large well known corporate who can progress your career, or a position with a start-up where you can gain experience and make contacts in cutting-edge industries. This question can also relate to the size of the company you’d like to work for and the kind of core values that are important to you.
What kind of company culture are you looking for?
While many people see company culture as an afterthought, it’s actually one of the main factors that determines whether you’ll fit into a company and thrive. While many companies have the same kind of positions, the way that an organisation expects its employees to behave and carry out their duties can be radically different. This is less about conforming to mantras such as “work hard, play hard” than thinking about what you value and the kind of people who you relate to. Some people like a formal culture that sets strict boundaries and codes of behaviour, while some people find this old fashioned and stifling. What’s important to remember is that the culture isn’t necessarily defined by the industry, but usually by the mind-set of the people at the top of the organisation. One company could value you for precisely the same thing that another company sees as a risk, so it’s important to find a position where you feel valued and able to grow.
Thinking about your career in the long term can help you to set goals for yourself and focus on achieving an end objective. Be sure to incorporate some of this information into your CV and LinkedIn profile in order to give employers a good idea of what you’re looking for and whether you’re a good fit for them.
Whatever roles you choose, Amaze Umbrella offers a fully compliant, efficient and value-added payroll solution. To talk to a member of our team call: 0161 464 8793