Weitong has secured Audit Graduate Trainee position at KPMG, UK before graduating with an MSc in Marketing.
MSc in Marketing student, with BA in Business and Management.
Weitong reached out to me just after graduating from Coventry University with BA in Business and Finance and before starting her post-graduate studies at the University of Bristol. As many international students, Weitong wanted to start her career in the UK instead of going back to China. Being a Chinese student with a limited understanding of the graduate recruitment process in the UK and no experience in applying for jobs, she was concerned about her chances to secure a position that would provide visa sponsorship. To give herself a head start Weitong has decided to start improving her job searching skills before starting her Master’s studies (the decision I can’t recommend enough for all post-graduates!).
The key challenges she was facing were:
• She could only work for companies that sponsors work visas
• Language barrier and cultural differences
• She lacked overall understanding of graduate recruitment process
• No prior experience in drafting CV, writing cover letters, attending interviews and assessment centres
• She lacked understanding what career options would match her skillset
• Her CV didn’t highlight her accomplishments and strengths
• She didn’t understand how to “sell herself” effectively while writing cover letters and answering application and interview questions
• She lacked experience in presenting herself at interviews
• She lacked experience in attending assessment centres
Weitong, just as many graduates, was lacking an understanding of what career options would match her skillset. Together we explored her professional and personal values to identify potential careers options to match her strengths. Through the carefully designed exercises I helped Weitong to clarify her desires, dreams and ambitions and turn them into precise goals. After a few sessions with me she was able to identify what a fulfilling and meaningful career looks like for her and together we defined short term, medium and long term career goals. Weitong’s short term career goal was to secure a graduate scheme offer from Big Four. In order to achieve her career goals I provided her with tools to design a clear and tangible action plan to get her focused.
Weitong was aware that the graduate recruitment process is highly competitive so her performance at every stage had to be exemplary. We worked on improving her CV and LinkedIn profile and I helped her to write strong and targeted cover letters by teaching her how to demonstrate a genuine interest in her chosen industry, company and position and that she was the best candidate for the job. I’ve also enabled her to identify and define her “star” factor to make sure she stands out in a job market, making her a desirable candidate for companies that agree to provide her visa sponsorship. I’ve also created a personal brand for her which helped Weitong to highlight her “star” factor in her CV, cover letters and LinkedIn profile. I’ve revised all her cover letters and applications to increase her chances of securing interviews and developed interview and assessment centre skills. Together we worked on creating answers for motivational, competency and strength based interview questions. I’ve also prepared a plan to develop her commercial awareness and helped to prepare for each stage of recruitment.
Weitong had completed video interviews with PwC, KPMG, BDO, EY, Mazars, Grant Thornton and was invited to attend KPMG assessment centre. So the next step in our coaching was assessment centre skills development to make sure that Weitong was fully prepared. Working as a career coach for 8 years means that I have an extensive database not only of previously asked interview questions but also case studies that various companies have been using in their assessment centres. I’ve not only taught Weitong various strategies how to stand out in group discussions and write effective reports but I also shared real case studies used at assessment centres that she would know what to expect on the actual day. Weitong succeeded at her first ever assessment centre and was invited to a partner interview. Together we tackled possible commercial awareness questions and she practiced her answers with me to make sure she radiated confidence and demonstrated enthusiasm and interest in joining KPMG. All the hard work that Weitong put in for more than 6 months resulted in receiving a graduate scheme offer.
My coaching has enabled Weitong to secure an Audit Graduate Trainee position at KPMG, at their Bristol office before she has completed her Master studies. Weitong not only boosted her confidence, learnt about the recruitment process in the UK, but was able to prove to herself, her family and friends that an international student can indeed secure a job position in the UK.
“Evelina was my career coach and she has helped me to secure a graduate job at KPMG. Her session is extremely helpful to students who are looking for graduate jobs. This is mainly because she gives constructive feedback for almost every frequently asked interview question. Also, her advice about the assessment centres is very useful. It gives me confidence to successfully go through the very last recruitment stage. It is an absolute pleasure to take her sessions as she is not only my career coach but also one of my very good friends. I will definitely recommend her career session to my friends who are seeking graduate jobs”