Career Advice

Questions and Answers

Are there any costs to register for Blueprint's Service?

No, our service is free to candidates.

How do I register with you?

Simply call one of our experienced consultants on 02392 603030 to register your details or register using our online registration form. Once registered one of our consultants will go through your CV and discuss your recruitment needs.

Do I need to provide ID or qualifications?

In order for us to comply with current legislation we will need to see proof of ID either a copy of your driving licence or passport and a utility bill. Educational or professional qualifications also need to be confirmed.

Do I have to have an interview with you?

Yes, we need to interview you, either in person or over the phone, to go through in detail your past work experience and discuss what sort of position you are looking for.

Do I need to provide a CV?

Yes, we will need a word document, preferably emailed to us. We can of course provide advice on layout and CV presentation, see CV Advice section.

Will you need to take references?

To comply with current legislation and best practice we will need to take references from your previous employers. However we will always seek your permission before doing so.

CV Advice

A CV should really be no more than 2 or 3 pages in length or 3 or 4 for contract personnel. It is designed to highlight; previous work experience, qualifications and personal information about you. The CV is a very important document as it lets prospective employers learn more about you and will help them decide whether or not they want to interview you.

To present yourself successfully you need to think about what you have to offer a future employer and why that is important to them. Then make sure that the most relevant and important pieces of information are highlighted as early as possible in the CV.

The following structure is a guide to creating and presenting your CV:

Your full name

Your contact details -
address, telephone numbers and email address.

Profile - A personal statement about you and what you are looking for in a new position. This should be no more than a short paragraph. (This is optional)

Education and Professional Qualifications - List your academic success with most recent / highest first, make sure you include dates, names of educational institution and grades. Then list any professional qualifications including membership of any professional bodies.

Technical expertise and skills - A short bullet point guide to the technical expertise you have to allow a prospective employer a quick way of seeing your key skills and attributes.

Work experience - A list in chronological order (most recent first) of your previous employment. This should be detailed but brief and include; name of employer / business, dates you worked to and from, job title, key responsibilities and duties, any technical terms or specific IT system experience

Other work related positions - These can be of a non technical nature and may be related to internal teams, committees or organisations you were involved with. This shows a future employer your commitment and dedication above and beyond your normal duties

Leisure Interests - List your main leisure interests and pastimes. This will give a future employer an idea of what you do outside of work.

Referees - Always put a statement saying 'References available upon request', this allows you to provide referees suitable to the application.

Points to remember

CV presentation - Make sure your CV is clear, well laid out and easy to read. Put yourself in the shoes of a potential employer and make sure all the important pieces of information are easy to see and that it presents you in the best possible way. Also get a friend or relative to proof read it for you to make sure there are no spelling or grammatical errors, future employers hate to see them.

Reasons for leaving previous positions - It is always advisable to omit this from the CV as reasons can often be complicated and emotive and this doesn't always translate well when written down. This allows you to keep the CV positive and factual and allows you to discuss the reasons at interview.

Salary - It is advisable to leave this off the CV. Let the prospective employer view your skills and attributes. Salary can then be discussed at interview or a later stage.

Interview Tips

Preparation - Give yourself the best possible chance! Once you have secured an interview preparing for it is essential. All interviews are different but our experience shows that those candidates who prepare properly for an interview give themselves a better chance of securing the position. The following points are just a guide but feedback from clients and other successful interviews shows they improve your chances of success.

Research the company you are going to see - Find out as much as you can about the company you are going to see. Use the internet and their website to learn about what they do, their structure, products and services, their market place and locations.

Interviewers - Establish how many people are going to be interviewing you and what their positions are.

Location - Make sure you know exactly where the office location is and if possible do a test journey to make sure you know how long it will take to get there and what parking facilities are available or where the nearest railway station is.

Punctuality - Make sure you arrive in plenty of time. It allows you time to settle yourself before the interview and look at company brochures whilst waiting. Being late does not create a good impression! If for any reason you are going to be late contact the company and let them know.

Dress - Dress to impress! Be aware of the company culture and dress accordingly. First impressions count!

Arrival - When meeting your interviewer(s) greet them with a firm handshake and a smile. Keep eye contact, appear confident and look interested.

CV - Make sure you know your CV inside and out and that all the information is accurate. The CV will usually form the basis of the first part of your interview.

The Interview - The interview is a sales situation and your chance to sell yourself. It's also the company's chance to sell itself to you. Make sure you have a list of questions about the company, role and people you will be working for. Be prepared to adjust these according to the information you are presented with during the course of the interview. Your questions might include; the Company's future plans, career progression, training offered and company culture.
Listen carefully to the questions put to you, if you are unsure of a question ask the interviewer to explain it further, don't try to bluff your way through it. Show a real interest and be enthusiastic in the company and the position.

All interviews are different but below is a list of some standard interview questions:

  • Why do you want to work for us?
  • Why do you want this job?
  • What do you know about our company?
  • What are your strengths/weaknesses?
  • What do you like/dislike about your current job role?
  • Why are you looking for a new position?
  • What has been your greatest achievement to date?
  • How would you describe yourself?
  • How would your friends or colleagues describe you?
  • What are your future aspirations?
  • What can you offer to your new team/company?
At the end of the interview ask what the follow up procedure is and when you can expect an answer. Finally thank them for their time.

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