Enterprise Rent-A-Car: How to make your application stand out

Last week, our Careers & Employability team met with Catherine Rawcliffe, The Enterprise Rent-A-Car North West Talent Acquisition Specialist. Catherine is responsible for the graduate recruitment here in Liverpool and is excited to work with Liverpool Hope University and see student and graduates like you joining their placement programme and graduate scheme.

Here are Catherine’s top five tips to help you stand out from the crowd in your application…

  1. Work Ethic. Here at Enterprise Rent-A-Car we all get stuck in and do our fair share. It’s important to show that you have a good work ethic and are ready to work as a team and do your part.
  2. Flexibility. There are no two days the same working at Enterprise Rent-A-Car and our graduate scheme is no different. Show you can adapt to new environments, deal with last minute changes and solve problems and we will know you have what it takes.
  3. Communication. Customer service is a big part of every role here at Enterprise and if you show you can communicate effectively, especially at interview stage in the recruitment process, then you will definitely stand out from the crowd.
  4. Drive and Ambition. We are looking for graduates who have career ambition and want to progress. There are opportunities locally, nationally and globally with Enterprise Rent-A-Car and we want new team members who will reach for success.
  5. Sales Experience. This is not an essential for applicants but it definitely helps! If you have experience in sales then make sure that’s front and centre on your application as it definitely catches our attention.

Enterprise Rent-A-Car Graduate Scheme is now open for applications. Find out more here.

Ask the Expert: What does an education recruiter look for in a CV?

This editions expert is Catherine Stockford. Catherine is ‘School Support Services’ Specialist at Randstad Education Liverpool.  She is an experienced education professional with nearly 13 years education recruitment experience, matching teachers and support staff to temporary and permanent jobs in various Primary, Secondary and SEN schools, nurseries and colleges across Merseyside. She has won awards for ‘Consultant of the Year’, is qualified in HR and also completed QTS teacher training in primary many years ago.  Now also a primary school governor, she is passionate about working within the education sector adding value to local schools.

Catherine’s tips:

What does an education recruiter look for when they read a CV?

Most schools will ask you to fill in an application form as part of the direct job application process, but agencies need a CV for registration, and schools will also ask for it to consider you for jobs, so it is worth having one prepared!  Here is our advice on CVs:

No gimmicks

We prefer there to be nothing distracting too much from what we want to read, so for example no photos, coloured backgrounds, strange fonts, or text boxes where the formatting can mess up with different systems.

Contact details

You would be surprised how many people forget to include them on an application!  Check your personal email address and if it’s not professional enough in tone think about creating another one.  Don’t include social media details like your twitter handle unless you are absolutely sure it’s purely professional!  If someone did search for your name on Facebook after seeing your CV for example, are your privacy settings high enough and is your profile picture acceptable?

Length and format

Put your best information into the first page, after that you risk losing your reader.  2 sides of A4 is preferable for a CV, really long documents can put you off!  Use sections and bullet points to organise your information clearly and keep it concise.  Bad spelling and grammar should be a thing of the past; back up your claim to have good IT skills or excellent attention to detail by the use of a spell-check!

Profile

A clear statement of intention is always a good thing at the top of your CV, for example you might be a trained teacher but only looking for teaching assistant work.  It only takes a couple of sentences, but shouldn’t focus on ‘me me me’ with sentences such as ‘I need more experience’ or ‘I want more career development’; instead show how you can benefit the business or the school of the person reading.

Transferable skills

If you want a job working with children, then your CV should show some prior interest in that, for example if you have been a brownie leader or youth worker before in a voluntary capacity.  If not then try not to use the clichés of ‘team player who can also work on their own initiative’ or ‘great communication skills’ for example without backing this up with evidence of utilising them in other areas or jobs.  If you don’t have any employment history at all then a ‘skills profile’ can be a more relevant section.

Experience

Your most recent and relevant employment should be nearest the top of your CV.  Bar or retail jobs may be better in a separate section under ‘other employment’ and shouldn’t need a great deal of detail.  Explain any gaps for example a year travelling.  Don’t forget voluntary work and any practices or placements undertaken during study are still relevant work!  Try to expand a little on your experience, for example as a NQT you could include a few bullet points about each of your placements, such as year groups taught, extra-curricular activities, class sizes, syllabus used and so on.

Strengths and Achievements

It’s a great idea to include a section showing not just what you did, but how you made a difference or an impact to that school, group or child you worked with.  We don’t need lengthy descriptions of what your duties have been as a teacher, as we know!  What we don’t know is what makes you different or stands you apart from other candidates.  Think of specific detail, for example, what percentage of your class on placement achieved their target grades, how much did attendance or results improve?  Don’t be shy to call up your placements after you’ve left and find out what positive impact your time there had!

For more on CVs, interview tips and industry news, check out Randstad’s career hub: https://www.randstad.co.uk/job-seeker/career-hub/education/

From the Careers and Employability team:

If you are a student and would like help with finding work or making applications please pop in to our drop in service called Careers Express in the Employability Hub on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday’s 10:30 to 12:30.

If you are an organisation or professional who would like to find out more about our blog series please e-mail: careers@hope.ac.uk.

Want to make a difference? Why not work for an MP or political pressure group…

Many of our students, especially social sciences students have expressed their desire to pursue a career that makes a positive impact on people’s lives.  There are many different sectors and career paths which will let you do this. You can visit the Liverpool Hope Careers Education Resources section in My Careers Centre to download e-guides on Working in the Voluntary and Community sector and Working with Children and Young People to learn more.

Another area that people do not normally consider is working for an MP, charity or political pressure group. These positions provide you with a great platform to make a real difference in communities and individuals lives.

Moving on from the recent general election there are many constituencies around the country whose seats have changed to that of a different party.  These new MP’s are currently seeking to build new teams, with roles such as caseworkers and office managers. There will also be long standing MP’s who need to expand their team offering opportunities too. There will be opportunities across all political parties. These are great opportunities to make a difference and to gain insight into politics.

If you are interested in working for an MP, I suggest you check out this webpage to find out more: http://www.w4mpjobs.org/SearchJobs.aspx?search=alljobs

3 things you need to know about the Criminal Justice sector

Our Employability Placement Officer, Sarah Goulden, is back from an event on Careers in the Criminal Justice Sector. Lots of students and graduates are interested in the sector, so Sarah has put together ‘3 things you need to know about the Criminal Justice sector’ to help you get your foot in the door and kick start your career.

The Criminal Justice sector might sound a little vague, right? It’s a big sector with lots of career options, including Probation Officer, Prison Officer, Forensic Psychologist, Youth Offending Team and much more. All of these career paths have 3 things in common, so read on to find out the essentials…

1 Volunteer, Volunteer, Volunteer

If you are thinking about a career in criminal justice, then volunteering is a must. Working in criminal justice guarantees that you will be working with vulnerable people so any experience that demonstrates your ability to do that is ideal.

If you’re specifically looking at a career in, or related, to the prison service then finding volunteering opportunities in a prison, or for an organisation that works with offenders, is highly recommended. Not only will this look great on your CV, it also gives you a chance to brush up on the terminology, hierarchy and processes of prison life.

If you’re interested in volunteering to boost your career prospects then book yourself in for a 1-to -1 appointment with a Careers Adviser by emailing careers@hope.ac.uk. Telephone and skype appointments are also available.

2 Use your research wisely

There are always current and upcoming trends in the criminal justice sector. If you’re still studying this is a perfect opportunity to use your dissertation research to take a step closer to your dream job. If you’ve already graduated then this could look like additional research in your own time, or perhaps an idea for postgraduate study and research?

The buzz word at the moment in Criminal Justice is Desistence Theory. Desistence Theory is all about rehabilitation and striving to explain the process by which offenders come to live life free from criminality. If you want to stand out on your job applications for criminal justice jobs, do some research into this!

3 It’s a step in the right direction

Often when you are starting your career in a sector, the hardest part is landing your first job. As they say ‘once you’re in, you’re in!’ Some jobs in Criminal Justice are hard to come by and aren’t advertised very often. For example, if you want to be a forensic psychologist in the prison service, all of their vacancies are advertised internally before they are promoted externally. This means that if you already work there, you have a better chance of getting a job with them.

A job might come up that isn’t exactly what you’re looking for but ask yourself is it a step in the right direction? Research your career options, find out what the stepping stone job roles are and get applying to those as well!

Top tips for a teaching job application

This week’s blog has been written by Anthony Lowton from Prospero Teaching, Liverpool.  Prospero Teaching is a specialist, award-winning, teaching agency with dedicated teams of candidate managers, compliance and in-house teacher resources.  If you’re applying for a teaching job here are Anthony’s top tips to help you secure your dream role… Read More

Job application – top tips

Applying for a job is a competitive process. Whether you’re applying for a summer job or your first graduate position don’t miss the Career team’s top tips…

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