“Here’s some advice that may help any graduates applying or about to apply next year (this worked well for me):
1) Apply early. This is the most important. Companies tend to start recruiting (graduates or interns) a few weeks after the applications open (in August / September to start the next summer). For competitive institutions such as banks, many divisions fill their spots by Christmas — at which point they won’t need to read any CVs after.
2) Speak to HR or current graduates at career fairs. If you meet HR there, a little chat where you show your interest can get your CV fast-tracked even if it’s distinctly average. Same goes with knowing an employee. Impressions matter more than a sheet of paper where everyone ‘changes’ the truth anyway.
3) Have a template for competency questions. First you really spend time answering the questions in the first few, and then just reiterate most of what you already have down. it’s all about key words: in some companies, algorithms look for them and will discard your application if you don’t have them in.
4) For the interview, do your research, but be honest about what you don’t know. Asking interesting questions is the best way to get employees interested in you, and if you ask the right questions, it can make up for some dodgy answers in the previous phase. Most of us employees in big companies know that you don’t know much about the job you want to go into yet but it doesn’t matter: we’re here to teach you, happy to do so if you’re keen to learn. We just want to work with someone who is easy to work with.
The key in interview process is to manage to sell yourself without coming across as arrogant. Some people on the interviewer side may mistake your modesty and candour about not knowing everything and not pretending to, but they are likely arrogant themselves, and not the type of people you want to work with anyway — you won’t be missing out. Good luck!” — TFCM is Back