My job hunting blog

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0le
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This will just be a blog to post my thoughts on my ongoing job hunting adventures.
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0le
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20/11/2020

So today I got rejected from the civil service. I recorded average for 6 out of 7 tests but below average for one of the tests. I was an active member of the civil service tsr thread so it was clear that the below average score meant I would be rejected. However it is still a horrible feeling being rejected. It is absolutely gut wrenching having to do 7 tests just to get to a set of video recorded questions .

I have immediately started with an application for Morgan Stanley. It is an internship but advertised for people with degrees. I will work on the CV and Cover Letters tonight.

I feel so alone in the whole process. My partner is moving on in her life slowly, as she remains in full time employment. I just want to get on with my life. I have been looking for jobs now for well over year and the process is draining. It is difficult to maintain a good level of motivation. TSR has been some level of support in this regard.
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Glossed101
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(Original post by 0le)
20/11/2020

So today I got rejected from the civil service. I recorded average for 6 out of 7 tests but below average for one of the tests. I was an active member of the civil service tsr thread so it was clear that the below average score meant I would be rejected. However it is still a horrible feeling being rejected. It is absolutely gut wrenching having to do 7 tests just to get to a set of video recorded questions .

I have immediately started with an application for Morgan Stanley. It is an internship but advertised for people with degrees. I will work on the CV and Cover Letters tonight.

I feel so alone in the whole process. My partner is moving on in her life slowly, as she remains in full time employment. I just want to get on with my life. I have been looking for jobs now for well over year and the process is draining. It is difficult to maintain a good level of motivation. TSR has been some level of support in this regard.
Mate, I feel you. I know many who were in the same position as you and have since been able to secure a job. I have also seen you very active on TSR. THATS GOOD! The fact that you're putting in effort, matters - It'll show in the end. The process is draining and can often feel as if your not up to par with other candidates, but I can assure you that with time, the experience you've gained, countless rejections you've seen and time you've spent on applications will pay off.

Cliche I know... but honestly its true. If you need any help just give me a shout.

Good luck
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0le
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(Original post by Glossed101)
Mate, I feel you. I know many who were in the same position as you and have since been able to secure a job. I have also seen you very active on TSR. THATS GOOD! The fact that you're putting in effort, matters - It'll show in the end. The process is draining and can often feel as if your not up to par with other candidates, but I can assure you that with time, the experience you've gained, countless rejections you've seen and time you've spent on applications will pay off.

Cliche I know... but honestly its true. If you need any help just give me a shout.

Good luck
Thank you for your kind words, it means a lot.
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Glossed101
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(Original post by 0le)
Thank you for your kind words, it means a lot.
No worries gaffa, I've been there before. Not long ago I came across a notion which had completely changed my outlook on job seeking and in general life. It might be of some help to you. Full credit to Ali Abdaal who set this alight.

The future is uncertain, no one knows whats going to happen. But in general what we want to be doing is trying to keep our options open. We want to maximise randomness and optionality. So many good things in life happen because of pure serendipity. For e.g. if you ask people how they met their partners, or how they landed their new job, most of the time its down to being at the right place at the right time - this opportunity just randomly came about and they took advantage of it. The more you talk to people the more you see this luck factor (luck events) and they capitalise on them and eventually good things happen to them. The idea is that we can't control luck events that hit us but we can increase the surface area for luck events to hit us. We're essentially exposing ourselves to more interesting things. For e.g. say I was living in a small town in Ireland and I never left that village, chances are you've got a small surface area for luck to strike. You're not meeting new people and so, you're not going to stumble across new opportunities etc.. its difficult for a luck event to change the course of your life. It can do, but chances are, its very unlikely. On the other hand, if you are the sort of person whos constantly moving around, interacting with people on the web and in general putting yourself out there, you're increasing your surface area for serendipity. There are infinitly more possibilities for interesting things to happen if you're that sort of person than if you're the person who stays in the little town in Ireland. To increase your surface area for luck you have to keep your options open, meet new people and expose yourself to situations your unfamiliar with.

And I think you're doing just that . Keep at it!
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0le
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Thanks Glossed, will do

The last few days have been a mixed bag.

I managed to complete the application in time for Morgan Stanley. I now have some tests to complete, which thankfully do not include verbal reasoning, which is usually my weakness. I will do this probably tomorrow.

Unfortunately I have received rejections from Barclays and a rejection from the civil service fast stream. I expected these rejections because for Barclays, I struggled with the quant maths test and for the civil service, I scored poorly on one of the tests so I knew it would be rejected. I don't feel particularly sad about it, mainly because it does not come as a major surprise to me.

In better news, I received an initiation to the video assessment for the BT grad scheme. It is a major relief because many others on TSR had received invites and I had not. Last year (via Openreach, a BT owned organisation), I reached the video assessment as well, so it would have been disheartening to have regressed in that regard. I will likely complete the assessment in the late hours tonight.

I have identified a job I can apply for, "Arm" graduate role. It is basically authoring and writing technical documents for Arm, the company that makes and licenses the architecture "big little" processors, mainly for mobile phones. They don't mind any degree and I quite enjoyed document writing and making schematics during my university life so I think it is worth applying!
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achieve526kk
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All these graduate schemes are fraud i am gonna exploit them
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DarkKnight06
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Following this
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0le
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Okay well I completed a video assessment for BT. Whilst I did not freeze for any question, I could not come up with good quality examples for two of the six(?) questions. I felt at the end I had failed it and just sat there pretty distraught. You know that feeling in the throat when you get when you've lost something...I felt that. The following day I was just numb, but I managed to complete an application for Arm.

I also got rejected from several more companies. Both Airbus and PA Consulting. I completed CV's and cover letters but got no tests or anything. Just a long time waiting and then rejections. I reckon they didn't even read them. Oh well.

I've also just done the tests for Morgan Stanley. They were odd. First of all they required us to confirm we had both Java and Flash installed to complete the tests. I did not realize it was still 2010! . I wish it was to be fair...I pretended that I did and had no technical problems with completing the tests.

The logical one was very simple and I completed nearly all the questions. Yet bizarrely, the feedback said I answered the questions "relatively slow" in comparison to others, even though the test at the beginning said most people do not even finish the test? I did worse on the numerical test, which was tough. It has six data sheets and you answer 18 questions in about 6 minutes. Each question only uses one data sheet. Again my feedback was that I answered the questions "relatively slow" in comparison to others.

More positively though, for both tests, they claimed I was highly accurate and found it as easy as most others, whatever that means. They also claimed I was relatively well suited for the business unit for the situational test. What a mixed set of results. Given how competitive Morgan Stanley is, it seems unlikely I will make it to the next round.

I think next up will be applying for a scheme with Cisco. Got rejected last year around this time but it was for a software role. This time I will apply for a role more suited to me and with a better CV and cover letter. Fingers crossed.

I've realized a running theme with myself. I read and answer questions much more slowly than a lot of people. I also take more time to explain things, hence I struggle with video assessments in general. I guess I will have to work on those things somehow.
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achieve526kk
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when you truly believe you will achieve good luck with your apps
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Glogangk
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I’m really rooting for you! I’m sure something great is going to come your way
P.s your writing is really good, if you write a book I’ll be the first to grab that, that’s for sure.
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DarkKnight06
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(Original post by 0le)
Okay well I completed a video assessment for BT. Whilst I did not freeze for any question, I could not come up with good quality examples for two of the six(?) questions. I felt at the end I had failed it and just sat there pretty distraught. You know that feeling in the throat when you get when you've lost something...I felt that. The following day I was just numb, but I managed to complete an application for Arm.

I also got rejected from several more companies. Both Airbus and PA Consulting. I completed CV's and cover letters but got no tests or anything. Just a long time waiting and then rejections. I reckon they didn't even read them. Oh well.

I've also just done the tests for Morgan Stanley. They were odd. First of all they required us to confirm we had both Java and Flash installed to complete the tests. I did not realize it was still 2010! . I wish it was to be fair...I pretended that I did and had no technical problems with completing the tests.

The logical one was very simple and I completed nearly all the questions. Yet bizarrely, the feedback said I answered the questions "relatively slow" in comparison to others, even though the test at the beginning said most people do not even finish the test? I did worse on the numerical test, which was tough. It has six data sheets and you answer 18 questions in about 6 minutes. Each question only uses one data sheet. Again my feedback was that I answered the questions "relatively slow" in comparison to others.

More positively though, for both tests, they claimed I was highly accurate and found it as easy as most others, whatever that means. They also claimed I was relatively well suited for the business unit for the situational test. What a mixed set of results. Given how competitive Morgan Stanley is, it seems unlikely I will make it to the next round.

I think next up will be applying for a scheme with Cisco. Got rejected last year around this time but it was for a software role. This time I will apply for a role more suited to me and with a better CV and cover letter. Fingers crossed.

I've realized a running theme with myself. I read and answer questions much more slowly than a lot of people. I also take more time to explain things, hence I struggle with video assessments in general. I guess I will have to work on those things somehow.
For BT, if it's any consolation I completed the application process - drafted my cover letter and CV (took a good hour) and sent it through. Within 2 minutes I tell you I got an email "We are very sorry, we won't be considering you for this role". Story of my life..

Same here - rejected by Airbus.
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0le
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Well in surprising news, I passed the video assessment for BT. Alas the surprise is actually that everyone in the TSR thread passed the video assessment. Despite the fact that TSR only represents a very small fraction of applicants, it is incredibly rare that everyone passes the video assessment, so I'm not quite sure what to make of it.

I then got rejected by Imperial for a temporary lab assistant role. I was genuinely gutted. I thought my CV and cover letter were very strong. Oh well, it wasn't meant to be. I asked for feedback but I have yet to hear a response.

I completed an application for Arup in fluid dynamics, one of my favourite topics from university, so fingers crossed that one works out. Unfortunately I missed the deadline for Cisco so I've now got to look for some more roles to apply for over the festive period. Their does not seem to be much available at present.

Still also waiting for news from Morgan Stanley, HSBC, Natwest, BAE, Arm and Accenture.
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0le
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So out of all those companies, I've already been rejected from Arup. I completed the situational test and got an email saying I've been rejected. Last year, for a different role, I passed the situational test for Arup so I am pretty surprised to be honest. I get the impression they had too many people apply for the role and they've just rejected people who applied late.

I am once again pretty sad about it. The role was fairly close to things I've done previously so I know I would have been pretty good at it. Oh well.

I've not been particularly well, my sleeping pattern has been off and therefore there hasn't been much progress on my part this week. I finished the CV for a civil service role in stats and now just need to write the supporting statement. It took many hours because they want an "anonymous" CV and they also give a lot of detail about what they are looking for. I've gone through the various documents, made checklists and hopefully the CV covers most things they are looking for.
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0le
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I've been working on the application for the civil service. I compiled all the documentation and writing the supporting statement. Just one section left to write. It has taken forever and I haven't really felt in the mood to write it most of the time, but it is what it is.

I reached out to a community library and offered to volunteer. Whilst they have no roles over Christmas they said more would be available from the 2nd. I am actually looking forward to getting some volunteering experience. It is of course, important for the CV, but a bigger, but more personal reason, is that I need something just to feel like I have a purpose again. Job hunting is such a dark and lonely place, where your confidence is stripped from you and life just passes by. So to have something which makes you feel useful again is something I think would help me a lot.

Out of the blue I heard a response from Accenture and was asked to do their test. It took several hours, mainly because I found the case study quite dull and tedious as a subject about which to answer questions. I felt I did okay in the test. Fingers crossed I get an assessment centre.

Unfortunately I got rejected from Morgan Stanley. Though I later found out that I missed the deadline to do the tests by submitting 2 days late, so that was probably the reason. Oops!

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In other news, I've shamelessly binged watched several seasons of taskmaster and written some poetry...
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DarkKnight06
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(Original post by 0le)
I've been working on the application for the civil service. I compiled all the documentation and writing the supporting statement. Just one section left to write. It has taken forever and I haven't really felt in the mood to write it most of the time, but it is what it is.

I reached out to a community library and offered to volunteer. Whilst they have no roles over Christmas they said more would be available from the 2nd. I am actually looking forward to getting some volunteering experience. It is of course, important for the CV, but a bigger, but more personal reason, is that I need something just to feel like I have a purpose again. Job hunting is such a dark and lonely place, where your confidence is stripped from you and life just passes by. So to have something which makes you feel useful again is something I think would help me a lot.

Out of the blue I heard a response from Accenture and was asked to do their test. It took several hours, mainly because I found the case study quite dull and tedious as a subject about which to answer questions. I felt I did okay in the test. Fingers crossed I get an assessment centre.

Unfortunately I got rejected from Morgan Stanley. Though I later found out that I missed the deadline to do the tests by submitting 2 days late, so that was probably the reason. Oops!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

In other news, I've shamelessly binged watched several seasons of taskmaster and written some poetry...
Great to see an update! Keep them applications going.
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0le
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I completed the application for the civil service and have a test to complete.

I also completed a quick application to a graduate scheme for the FCA and completed their verify g+ test which is provided by SHL. It was answering 30 questions on numerical, deductive and inductive reasoning. I messed up some basic questions but fortunately I still passed! They've now told me to fill in an extended application form where I have to answer 4 questions about why I want the company/role etc. Not a big fan of application questions so we'll see how it goes...

HS2 has a few graduate roles so I will probably apply there at some point within the next week as well. In terms of existing applications, Accenture sent me an update basically saying there would be a delay in getting back to people. No update from the other companies.
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0le
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I have spent some time trying to answer the four motivational questions from the FCA:

1. Motivation & Deliver in the public interest (Max 250 words)
a) What attracts you to working in this part of the financial services industry in the UK? Why did you choose the FCA?
b) What have you done to prepare yourself for a career at the FCA?
c) As part of your preparation, what have you enjoyed learning about the most and why?


2. Motivation and Deliver in the public interest (Max 250 words)
a) What do you find most appealing about the specific programme you have applied for?
b) What do you think you will enjoy about working for the FCA?


3. Judgement (Business Acumen) Max 250 words
a) Looking at what the FCA has achieved over the last 12 months, what has made the biggest positive impact on consumers in your opinion?
b) What are the implications for financial services in the UK?


4. Judgement (Business Acumen) Max 250 words
a) What do you think are the biggest challenges that the FCA face in serving the public interest are?
I am honestly really struggling with this. I spent a few hours just learning about financial terminology but the FCA website is so dense and in my opinion does a poor job of really explaining clearly to people without a financial background the things they do. I am not really sure what they want in parts 1b and 1c either ... I have not spent the last ten years of my life in academia with the sole focus of developing a career just at the FCA. Obviously they just want something generic but yeah, the wording irritates me.

Generally I am put off when any company expects you to fill out extended questions on application forms. I've never succeeded with any company that has asked to do this. My answers always sound generic and **** no matter how much research I do. I read examples from indeed, reed, etc and their answers to me sound awful as well and absolutely nothing like me. For motivational questions, in real life, I am (politely) quite blunt, so to come up with elaborate answers that sound unique and interesting is a real challenge for me .
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Proxenus
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what was your phd in again
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0le
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I completed the tests for the Civil Service. It was pretty basic stats stuff, but there was so much I've just not done in so many years that I really struggled. I think I still did okay and for some I left the answers blank because they use negative marking.

I've completed the CV and bits of the Cover Letter for HS2. I will continue to work on the Cover Letter and submit my application as soon as possible.

I am now also preparing for a video assessment with BAE. I've listened to some talks and I will continue to watch a few more. I'll then read some news articles and then do the assessment later in the week.

Thus far I have active applications with:
Video assessment completed:
Natwest
HSBC
BT
BAE (This week)

Tests Completed:
FCA
Accenture
Civil Service.

No response:
Arm

Writing application:
HS2
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