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Moments that Matter in the Recruitment Process

Nistaar Virk, a senior analyst at Macquarie, gives her thoughts on how you can

ensure that you make an impact in the moments that matter most in the graduate

and intern recruitment process.

I joined Macquarie as a graduate in the Risk Management Group back in 2015. I still

remember the intense process of applying for graduate roles and attending careers

fairs and company events in order to understand more about the opportunities

available and what would suit me best.

From submitting your application through to the offer stage, in my view there are five

key moments in the graduate and intern recruitment process that help a potential

employer like Macquarie build an impression of you. I wanted to share some tips for

success throughout each of the stages.

Stage 1: your online application

 Think outside the box - consider a range of roles outside of what you

think you should do with your degree. During my time here, I have

learnt that Macquarie values diversity of thought and your degree will

equip you with transferable skills that can be applied in non-traditional


 Consult widely - utilise multiple channels (such as your parents,

mentor, academics, company website, LinkedIn and career events) to

find out more about the organisation and the role.

 Use your CV to show Macquarie why you are a suitable candidate for

the role. Make sure you include any particular skills you have, and

extra-curricular or personal achievements you have accomplished;

they show your individuality and personality as well as key

competencies such as tenacity, achievement drive and team work .

Stage 2: your psychometric assessment

 Practice is important - your email invitation will include a link to

practice questions which I recommend you do. It’s also helpful to

brush up on your basic maths skills e.g. percentage change, reading

graphs and ratios; you’ll need them during the assessment!

 Be in the right frame of mind - there is a wealth of evidence linking

nutrition and sleep to improved cognitive performance. Eating well

and getting enough sleep helps to ensure you’re performing at your

best. Complete the test when you feel most productive.

 Relax. Don’t stress about the assessment. If you’ve practiced and

prepared that’s the best you can do.

Stage 3: your video interview

 Dress professionally, you’re on camera! Plus, it will get you into the

right frame of mind.

 Practice with a friend - this can be helpful in getting you familiar with

the format. Think about some questions you might be asked (e.g.

why are you interested in this role? What key skills do you think we

are looking for, and what can you can bring to the role?) and think

about what your responses would be. Get some feedback on your

communication skills, keeping in mind to always be professional.

 Do your research - refresh your knowledge of the research you did in

the online application stage and be prepared to talk about areas that

interest you, as well as skills and experience you’d like to further

develop as you start your career.

 Ensure you are comfortable and won’t be distracted during the


Stage 4: your interview

 Prepare your outfit the night before and allow plenty of travel time.

This will help you to feel relaxed on the day.

 Research - find out as much as you can about the role and show your

interviewers you understand what you would be doing as an analyst

in their team. Ask your recruiter plenty of questions and utilise

resources like Macquarie’s website. As you can see, research is

important in all stages of the process.

 Know your CV - feel confident speaking about your experiences.

 Understand your motivations for applying - this is something your

interviewers will be interested in, so make sure you can articulate why

you are interested in Macquarie and the role. Showing your passion

and interest will help you to stand out.

 You’ll be asked competency-based questions, and when answering

them use the STAR format (situation, task, action, result) as it helps

you to give concise but comprehensive answers. Think of some

questions the interviewers may ask and strong examples that you can

incorporate into your answers.

 Try and relax. Often the interviewer wants to test the way you think

and hear your point of view; having a conversation that flows easily

will make the process more enjoyable!

 Think of some insightful questions you would like to ask. The

interview is a two-way process and an opportunity for you to consider

whether the role is right for you. The interviewers will often be from

your prospective team and can provide invaluable insights.

Stage 5: the offer stage

 You'll be called by your recruiter who will provide feedback and let

you know if you have an offer, before you receive the offer

documentation by email. On the call, make sure you ask questions or

clarify anything you're not sure of.

 Be open and honest - if you have another offer that you're

considering, be transparent and make sure you understand

differences in roles and opportunities. Your recruiter might be able to

answer some questions or put you in touch with someone in the team

that can help you make up your mind.

 Trust your instincts - consult widely to see what others think about the

offer, but make the final decision yourself (after all, you will be the one

doing the job).

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