interview advice

The Resume

If you just started looking for work again or new to the workforce, you’ll know how important it is to have a resume. These pieces of paper hold everything about your professional experiences. A resume is a summary of your skills and experiences that include; Academic achievements, professional experiences and other industry related information. Don’t worry if you have never worked before! You can include any internships and voluntary work to your resume too! So let’s begin…

So what should I write?

Good question! When writing your resume, it’s important to think about the industry or job you’re applying for! Think about the skills and experiences that are required and highlight these skills in your CV. But, don’t worry if you don’t match every skill in the job description, focus on what you can contribute.

Is it okay to follow a template?

Absolutely! Unless you’re super creative and want to design your own CV from scratch, you can find great resume templates on word or google. Just make sure your resume is in word format, many recruiters require this to be able to forward your CV to potential employers.

What are your thoughts on CV designs?

Keep it simple, it’s much easier to read and go through resumes with a simple (readable) font and layout. We go through hundreds of CV’s and the ones that stand out are the ones that look simple, professional and to the point. No fancy graphics, unless you are going for a design role, of course!

Is a cover letter important?

Not for every role. Cover letters can be important for reception, EA and PA roles, these jobs may require good typing and writing skills and a cover letter is the perfect place to highlight these professional writing skills. You could take the time to type up a professional email with an attached resume to your consultant.

One last thing!

Remember to add your work experiences in chronological order. That means the newest job first to the oldest job last. For example, if your last job was in 2017 it should be the first job we see in the work experience section of your resume. And, if your oldest job was in 2012, that should be the last thing we see. It’s amazing how often we see resumes with dates the other way around. The problem with this is employers may not go through every page of your CV, This means that they could only get to see your very first role. You want to be able to give yourself every chance of success, especially if your CV is one of many!

About The Author – Lauren Stuckey

Lauren Stuckey, Senior Recruitment Consultant, has been with PKL Recruitment since 2009 and currently managing a temporary desk. Having had two maternity breaks between 2013-2015, she would be happy to discuss how PKL Recruitment have worked to build a flexible working relationship to support her successful work and home life. Contact Lauren directly at lauren.stuckey@pkl.com.au or on LinkedIn.

Top 3 Tips For Interview Preparation

Once you have been selected for an interview, it can be an exciting and challenging time. It means you have passed the first stage of the recruitment process with a successful CV and cover letter.

Many candidates experience nerves throughout the interview process and there are a few quick tips you can apply to calm the butterflies in your stomach.

1. Research the company

Reviewing the company website and reading company information will help ensure you are properly prepared to answer questions and will also provide a framework for your own questions to the interviewer.

The most credible way to demonstrate your knowledge about a company is to ask meaningful questions about their current business, future goals and business objectives. A quick review of the media section on the company website or LinkedIn page will reveal the organisation’s current priorities.

2. Dress professionally for the role

You only get one chance to make the best impression in your interview. By dressing professionally no matter the cultural norm, you already have the advantage over other candidates. By wearing corporate attire, your interviewer will appreciate the level of pride you take in your appearance. Most companies adhere to specific dress codes, be mindful of this, as your interviewer will be taking this into consideration when hiring new staff.

3. Prepare and practice potential interview questions

There are a number of questions you are likely to be asked in every interview, such as:

  • Why did you apply for this role?
  • What do you know about our company?
  • What experience do you have in our industry?
  • What are your strengths and weaknesses?

Although it is important to prepare for these questions, many interviewers will ask behavioural style questions to help them understand you better as a person and observe how you perform under pressure or in different circumstances.

It pays to write a longer list of predictable and less predictable questions you may be asked. Be prepared to give prompt and articulate responses to questions such as:

  • What motivates you?
  • How do you spend your spare time?
  • What is the scariest thing you have ever done?
  • What is your biggest regret?

These questions are designed to side-step the ‘canned responses’ and encourage candidates to speak ‘off-the-cuff’ on a subject that is not directly related to the role. It may seem challenging but it is an increasingly common way for an interviewer to determine which candidates might be the right fit for their team culture.

In summary, research the company, dress professionally for the role, and prepare and practice interviewer questions.

Good luck in your interviews!

About The Author – Shannon Lippert

As PKL Recruitment’s New South Wales Branch Manager, Shannon is responsible for both the Temporary and Permanent Divisions. Since joining the PKL Recruitment team in 2013, Shannon has always lead from the front, guiding and growing the Sydney PKL Recruitment Branch to be one of the most successful recruitment teams in Sydney. Contact Shannon directly on shannon.lippert@pkl.com.au or on LinkedIn.

About PKL Recruitment

PKL Recruitment strives on assisting candidates to succeed in their chosen career. PKL Recruitment specialises in business support and call centre recruitment for part time, temporary or permanent roles. Visit our website for more information on how we can assist you with your interview preparation.