Whether you’re comfortable in front of a camera lens or become filled with fear at the thought of talking into a camera, pre-recorded video interviews are rapidly becoming more and more popular in recruitment. Luckily for you, we’ve pulled together a few tips and tricks to help set you up for success.
Prepare yourself and your surroundings
Sounds simple, but many job seekers underestimate just how important getting their video appearance right really is. While you may think the only thing the interviewer can see is your face, they will be able to see some of your surroundings too. This makes it important to get both right. Key things to consider include:
Keep body language in check
During a video interview it’s important to be mindful of your body language and facial expressions. This is because some gestures and behaviours that are fine in person can be distracting on video (you want them focused on what you’re saying not what you’re doing). Key things to consider include:
Practice makes perfect
If you’re uncomfortable with the technology or how you look/sound on camera, the best thing you can do is practice, practice, practice. One of the real advantages of pre-recorded video interviews is that you can practice and refine your interview technique before sharing your final version with the employer. You should take this opportunity to record yourself, watch your response and make tweaks to improve your performance. Another helpful exercise is to ask someone else to interview you via video and ask for feedback. This will ensure you deliver a polished performance and actually answer the question being asked.
So, you’ve just been asked to undertake a psychometric test. For some, the words ‘psychometric test’ can produce feelings of fear and panic, especially for first-time takers. Luckily for you, we’ve pulled together a few tips and tricks to help you understand the fundamentals of psychometric tests and how to best prepare for them.
What is a psychometric test?
A psychometric test is a tool designed to measure and assess your numeracy, logical reasoning, and comprehension abilities. This test is normally multiple choice and adheres to a strict time limit. Psychometric tests are helpful for employers because they identify your behavioural profile - i.e. your level of intelligence and personality characteristics. This information is useful because it helps employers find the most suitable job seekers in the most efficient way possible.
Preparation is key
To give yourself the best opportunity to perform in a psychometric test, you need to prepare right. This is particularly important if you’re doing these tests alongside other commitments such as exams or part-time jobs. You can start by finding a space that’s isolated from noise and distractions. This will help you to clearly think and practice before completing the test. You should also spend time carefully reading the instructions. Many job seekers try to complete these tests as quickly as possible without reading the instructions properly. Reviewing the instructions will provide you with important information that could be crucial to your success - e.g. how long the test is, how many questions, what you will be tested on and how much time you have.
Practice makes perfect
Before even starting your psychometric test, you should find out which specific tests you’ll be taking and practice them online. There are plenty of free resources online that can help you hone your skills. Practising these questions will train your brain to identify frameworks for solving problems and significantly improve your results. You should particularly set aside time to review the questions you answer incorrectly. This will help you identify which types of psychometric tests you struggle with and give you plenty of time to improve in these areas before the real test.
Eat sleep rest repeat
You will need to be at your best to produce good results in psychometric testing. Tiredness will likely damage your scores. Make sure you're well rested and take decent breaks while practising to ensure you regain your energy. If you're a morning person, get your practice tests done first thing. If you are a night owl, save your prep for the end of the day. Remember a fully rested brain is alert and ready while a tired brain is slow and less responsive.
Imagine you’ve just received your first match with an employer. The role is perfectly suited to your skill-set, but haven’t heard of this mysterious employer before. How do you go about determining if they’re a good fit for you? How can you get a sense of the company without meeting anyone from their team? Luckily for you, we’ve pulled together a few tips and tricks to help you understand if an opportunity is worth your while or not. This way you can focus on only targeting opportunities that will bring the best out of you.
Carefully read the company website
Finding information online about a company can be hard. Deciphering it can be even harder. It’s important you set aside time to carefully read as much as you can about the company on their website. This information is gold. It will give you an in-depth understanding of the company and the kinds of things they value. In particular, carefully read over the mission and values. This is often a good indicator of the organisational culture. If you find yourself agreeing with the mission and values, you’ll probably fit well within the organisation.
Check out their social media presence
In today’s day and age it shouldn’t just be employers checking out social media presence. You can actually do the same with them. Checking out an employer's social media is a great way to learn more about a company. It can help you to determine if its culture is a good fit with you. LinkedIn and Twitter are great social media tools to begin with. You can start by looking what what they post. Do they post interesting content? Do they promote their own staff? These types of questions can help take you closer to understanding if the organisation matches exactly what you’re looking for.
Leverage your network
One of the best things you can do to get a sense of a place is talk to someone who works there (or has in the past). If you’re lucky enough to know someone (or even someone who knows someone) you should reach out and ask them questions about the company. If you’re not so fortunate, you can always use LinkedIn, Facebook groups or even your university alumni group to find people with experience at the company. Your focus here is to confirm whether what you’ve researched is actually true (i.e. does the company just talk the talk or do they also walk the walk). A good starting point is to ask about their personal experience and what they think of the company culture and leadership. This will help shed light on if this opportunity is right for you or not.
So you're looking for a job but don’t have any real world work experience? You’re not alone. Many graduates each year become caught in the same catch-22: no-one will hire you because you have no experience, but you can’t get experience because no-one will hire you. Well, luckily for you there is a way out of this trap. We’ve pulled together a few tips and tricks to help you bridge the experience gap and improve your job prospects.
Emphasise your Skills
When employers say they want experience, what they really mean is they want to know you have “skills”. In particular, the skills required to performed in the job. If you don’t have any relevant work experience you should focus on emphasising your soft and hard skills. This could be skills such as a programming languages you’ve learnt (hard skills) or soft skills such as leadership and communication skills. Your goal here is to highlight your greatest strengths and demonstrate why they’re relevant.
Participating in sports, clubs and volunteer opportunities not only help build communication, teamwork and organisation skills, but also show an employer you’re committed (and that’s important!). So, think about all the times you've captained a sports team or been treasurer for your university club. You've probably learned a little something about leadership or managing finances. Highlight these skills to employers as they’re equally as valuable as work experience.
Get your own experience
Experience doesn't always have to be work experience. You can gain relevant experience by writing a blog, getting involved in online communities or even running a start-up. Employers are impressed with candidates who take the initiative and time out to get at least some kind of experience. This is particularly important in creative roles. If you want to work in Social Media, show that you can do so by building your own brand on Twitter or Instagram. The key is to work out what types of experiences you need to best prepare you for the role or industry.
Looking for a job but don’t know where to start? In this blog we’ll share three quick tips to help tailor your job search and improve your chances of landing the job that best fits your profile.
1. Understand your offer
Before you even start searching for jobs, you’ll need to understand what you can offer. A good place to start is to think about the job aspects you enjoy the most based on your tertiary studies. Now, this is not to say you can only take on roles in your area of expertise (as many employers take on people with diverse education backgrounds). But, by focusing on your qualifications you can emphasise the skills you’ve acquired and their transferability across industries. For example, if you've studied Finance, your offering could actually range from being a broker or analyst, to being in marketing and HR (as the underlying skills are similar - i.e. relationship skills, analysis and critical thought processes).
2. Create a compelling story
Now that you have an offering, you need to focus on why prospective employers should take notice of your profile. A good way to go about this is to understand what makes your profile (and you as an individual) unique. This can be as simple as your personality traits or a meaningful experience you’ve had that shaped your career plan. The key is to be genuine in your profile and not afraid to tell prospective employers about your true self. They’re interested in who you are and want to know if you’ll fit with their organisation. You have no reason to be afraid of sharing your motivations or outlining the type of employer you’re looking for. This process is incredibly important as it helps both employers and job seekers assess the cultural fit of each other.
3. Stay ‘plugged’ in
Once you’ve created an attractive offering, it’s all about hooking in the right job opportunities. A good place to start is by attending career fairs or industry events. These events are great for networking with people from the industry and understanding more about their experiences (and how you can tailor your profile to match). You can also make an impression on potential recruiters and help put a face to your name. Another way to stay plugged in is by staying on top of what’s going on in your field. You should read relevant trade journals, join professional social media groups and follow social media pages. This research can give you the latest hiring information, companies on the rise, and companies going through rough patches. It can also be incredibly useful context for when you go through to an interview stage.