Choose Your Future - Newcastle University

Marketing Your Postgraduate
Research Qualification
By the end of the session, you will
 have started to identify the skills and experience that are
marketable for UK employers
 have an understanding of the recruitment processes and
selection criteria for a range of jobs
 used information and advice on producing effective CVs
and achieving success at interview
 know how to convey the relevance and value of your
research experience to a range of different employers
 have practised answering some of the questions used on
application forms and at interview
How do employers recruit?
 Advertisement (not always)
 Application
– CV, application form, supporting statements
 Further assessment may include
Personality and aptitude tests
Group exercises eg simulation or case study
What are employers looking for?
At all stages of the recruitment process, they
are looking for evidence that you
 CAN do the job
 WANT to do the job
 FIT with the organisation
Employers attitudes to researchers
SEARCH Project, University of Sheffield, 2006
EMPRESS Project, University of Leeds, 2005
Agcas Survey “University Researchers: Employers’ Attitudes
& Recruitment Practices” in 2000 - highlighted benefits
and drawbacks to recruiting university researchers.
What can you offer?
As a whole group, you have 10 minutes to
brainstorm what a researcher has to offer.
Include skills, experience, knowledge and
personal attributes.
Evidence might include …..
 Academic study including scholarships
 Work Experience
– Teaching, demonstrating, industry, casual,
 Research Project & Training
– Publications, Conferences, Funding
 Professional interests & training
– Committees and societies
 Interests
Match your experience to the
organisation and role
 What skills and experience do they specify?
 What personal qualities are mentioned?
 What are their aims/services/products?
Job advertisement and information pack
Company website, reports and Google
Contacts – students, staff, family, work
Making an application
The application process will vary depending upon
the job and the organisation. You may be asked
for one or more of the following:
CV and covering letter
application form, possibly competency based
straightforward employment record
supporting statement
An effective CV should ...
 ensure content is relevant and style appropriate
 place the most important facts FIRST and give
them the MOST space
 be easy to read
 create the right impression
 be accompanied with a letter
Case Study
You and your team need to recruit a new member
of staff to the position advertised.
Prepare a shortlist from the applications provided
and rank the candidates in order of preference.
Be prepared to explain your choices including any
rejected candidates.
Case Study Feedback
 What were we looking for?
 What was the level of interest and quality
of candidates?
 Who did we shortlist and why?
 Who was offered the job?
 Any questions?
CV Examples
Mark Guy & Rachel Harker (Humanities)
 Academic research
 Research outside academia
 Change of direction
Academic CV
 summary of research (including aims and
achievements, supervisors name and funding)
 summary of research interests
 publications and conferences papers
 academic record including relevant studies
 projects and resources managed
 teaching and course development
 further contribution – administrative, teaching etc.
Using expert knowledge & skills
 summary of research (including aims and
achievements, supervisors name and funding)
 ability to achieve results
 education particularly relevant modules
 projects and resources managed
 relevant techniques and skills including
technical skills, Health & Safety
Change of direction
New direction, unrelated to research –
 include a brief and accessible description of
your research, avoid over-technical terms
 highlight the measures of your success and
achievements outside research context
 highlight key transferable skills appropriate to
the job and define your level of competence
 personal and skills profile may be helpful
CV Review
In your interview groups, discuss the key
requirements for the job and how you
might tailor you application.
 An achievement in itself
The interviewer wants to know:
That you CAN DO the job
That you WANT the job (Motivation)
That you FIT the organisation (Values)
General advice
 Think about why the question has been asked
 Ask for clarification if necessary
 Answer the question with relevant and specific
evidence of your achievements
 Keep to the point
 Focus on positive examples and comments
A few practical tips
First impressions
55% on body language
38% on tone of voice
7% on what you say
Talk and listen/watch
50/50 ratio, maximum 2 minutes at a time
Never be afraid of a pause
A STAR quality answer
A STAR quality answer ...
 Briefly describes the situation and why it was challenging
 States the objective, what YOU did and how you did it highlighting relevant skills you used (TASK & ACTIONS)
 Describes the outcome/any feedback/success
 Explains what you learned from this (RESULTS)
Practice interviews
In small groups, you will be interviewed for no
more than 10 minutes. The rest of your group
will act as independent observers.
At the end of each interview, you will be asked
to assess your performance and receive
feedback from the observers and interviewer.
Facilitators will be asked to feedback key
learning points to the larger group at the end.
To summarise
 Know the organisation’s wish list and how your
skills and experience match
 Answer the questions you are asked with clear
evidence of achievements
 Describe positive outcomes
 Be concise but offer to provide more detail
 Have several examples of important skills
 Anticipate weaknesses and prepare
Final considerations
 Check the format One-on-one, Panel,
Telephone, Technical
 Who will you meet?
 What do you want to ask?
What do you want to ask?
Structure of the organisation
Time given to each part of role
Typical projects
Variety of work
Performance assessment
Opportunities overseas
Further help
Individual advice and guidance, access to
information and online aptitude tests
Further resources
Future sessions
Keep yourself informed
 Look out for C-Weekly
 Check your ‘ncl’ e-mail
 Register with Vacancies Online
 Careers Service Events
2nd Floor
Armstrong Building (off the Quadrangle)
10 am - 5.00 pm
10 am - 4.30pm
Monday to Thursday
Duty Careers Adviser 11.00am – 4.30 pm
[email protected]