Graduate recruitment breakdown: the do's and don'ts
January 29, 2019
It's a big jump to go from university to full-time work, so we've revolutionised our recruitment process to make sure your experience is as smooth, positive and enjoyable as possible. Accenture Australia and New Zealand's Grad Recruitment Lead, Nicola Campbell, breaks down the process for us.
What’s different this year?
This year, candidates have the opportunity to come into the office, see our work life and environment, and have the opportunity to interview us. It’s a two-way street, and we’d like you to see if we fit what you need and vice versa.
Stage 1: Application
The first stage is to complete a simple application online. Submit your name, contact details and a copy of your CV.
Do: Research us
You can also jump on Whirlpool, Glassdoor and the Accenture website which has a wealth of information as well as blogs by current graduates and employees in all different areas of the business. Get to know us and see if we are the right fit for you.
Don’t: Address the wrong company
We’ve had candidates who personalise their CV for say PwC and forget to update for Accenture. This shows a lack of attention to detail and is a very easy error to prevent.
Stage 2 and 3: Eligibility/ CV Review and HR touchpoint
This is where we use a digital tool to review your CV and then manually review it before calling you for a phone screen. This is a general HR interview which will be quite informal. We want to have a chat with you about your interest in Accenture, why you applied, and what area you're passionate about. If we think you are a good fit for our current grad roles, we invite you to the next stage - an Assessment event in our office.
Do: Ask questions, be curious
Ask about our culture, clients, your role, even something you read on our website. This is where you can even start the discussion about remuneration. Don’t just focus on just that though, show us that you are really interested in working at Accenture and why.
Do: Be yourself
Don’t just say what you think we want to hear. We are looking for individuals who are comfortable in themselves. We want people to bring their best authentic self to work, so be open, be curious and be yourself.
Don’t: Be unprofessional
Even though the interview is informal, be professional. In the past, we’ve had candidates who were particularly persistent. They were working with a specific recruiter but continued to reach out to other recruiters within the same organisation via LinkedIn, email, Whirlpool with the same questions over and over again.
Persistency is a positive to a certain point. After that, it actually starts to be detrimental to a candidate’s application. We understand it can be stressful applying for graduate roles but please be patient.
Stage 4: Assessment event
This is where students come into the office and have the opportunity to engage with Accenture. Depending on the area of the business we think you would be most suited for, we either invite you to Accenture Adventure which is a one-day event or a two-day bootcamp called Tech Quest. Both include interactive sessions, group activities, a closing interview and a networking event. You also have a one-on-one interview with an Accenture leader.
Do: Understand what we are looking for
Passion and enthusiasm - We are interested in people. We want to know who you are, what you believe in and what you’re interested in outside of your studies and university degree. We value the whole you.
Flexibility and openness - At Accenture, our employees work on different projects, clients and roles throughout their career, and we want people who are open and enthusiastic about learning and trying different things.
Problem solving, teamwork and communication - Whilst technical skills are a given, we also keep an eye out for how you work with the different people you come into contact with, including your teammates and people from Accenture.
Don’t: Come unprepared
Prepare an elevator pitch - We send students a preparation pack beforehand with tips on creating an elevator pitch. This will help you clearly articulate your strengths without being put on the spot on the day.
Research, research, research - I can’t emphasise this enough. Do your research, understand the type of work Accenture does, who our clients are, and think about how your experiences and skills can play into that.
Use the STAR technique - The closing interview is a really great opportunity to state your case and leave a lasting impression. To avoid going blank on the day, have examples prepared. Use the STAR technique to format your answers. Describe the Situation, specific Task, the Action you took, and the Result that was achieved to illustrate your experience and skills.
Don’t: Rush it
Talking to a leader can be daunting but remember, they are just human and they want to get to know you as a person. Ask the leaders what they enjoy about working for Accenture and what has been their biggest career challenge.
Questions like these show an interest in the leader whilst also eliciting useful information and providing an insight into the company.
Remember, take a couple of deep breaths at the start and then go slow and steady. Timing is key.
Stage 5: Offer
This is where we make a verbal and written offer. Congrats, you’re in!
Don’t: Accept offers you don’t intend to keep
Yes, it happens. Candidates do accept multiple job offers and then renege. Things change, people’s decisions can alter, we get it. All we ask is for you to be transparent and let us know as soon as possible if something changes.
Applying for one of our Graduate Roles is your first step to the rest of your journey at Accenture, so come into the process with an open mind and enjoy it.