What Happens When Your CV is Shortlisted

In my previous post I discussed how to write your perfect CV.  Let’s hope it did the trick and and your CV is one of the ones shortlisted by the company. Here is a summary of the stages that might occur next:

1.      Telephone interview

The first stage could well be a telephone interview.   This is an opportunity for the company to check that your skills do match what they are looking for.

2.      Face to Face Interview

You may be interviewed by one or two people, or it may be a panel interview.

3.      Assessment Day

Assessment days are often used for Graduate Recruitment.  So the Company will assess a group of people who will undertake a series of exercises, generally in groups.  This process allows the assessors to identify leadership or team skills, and to see how the candidates approach each of the tasks.

4.      Test

This is a great way to find out whether you genuinely have the skills you have detailed in your CV.  A test is regularly used for technical roles. Companies will normally let you know in advance that there will be a test.  You may not know all the answers but if you can show your thought processes this may give them further insight into your abilities.

5.      Profiling

Companies may use some form of on-line profiling questionnaire.  Your responses to questions in the personality test allow potential employers to make predictions about how you will respond across a range of vastly different work-related activities. These predictions assist employers to measure how suitable you are for a role.

6.      Presentation

You may be asked to give a presentation on either on a subject which the Company provides or a subject of you own choice.  If the former, read the brief carefully, answer the question and keep to the point. If it is your choice, pick a subject which is relevant for the role – don’t just regurgitate a previous presentation you may have prepared for some other event.  This can come across as lazy or unimaginative.

Do check how long you are being allowed for the presentation.  Make sure you do not exceed that time, shorter is better.  Do practice, ideally in front of somebody who can give you feedback, or a mirror; and then practice again.  This will help you to speak naturally and avoid just reading your PowerPoint (if that is what you are using). Check whether you can bring the presentation on a USB or whether you need to bring your own laptop.


Next week we will look at how you can prepare yourself for your face-to-face interview.

Hilary BackwellTime2Time HR
Time2Time HR Ltd
M: 0771 865 7175
T:  01635 600305



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