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Regarding Careers office interviews

#1
I have recently completed my GCSE examinations and, only today, I booked my first interview with my local (Officer) careers advisor, here in Belfast, Northern Ireland. As with all interviewees I was asked to prepare a CV and send it in as soon as possible. The secretary was very helpful, yet vauge on what I should put in the CV.

I have four questions:

1) How should I write the CV (For example, layout, language, what is important?, how the envelope/address should be displayed)?

2) What should I include in the CV (For example, I am a memebr of the CCF and have acheived academic awards in science and won various competeitions but, are the army really looking for my KS3 results? and what is most important to a carrears advisor?)?

3) What should I expect from the interview (how should the Advisor conduct himself and will he spring add questions on me to sub consicously guage my suitibility)?

4) How can/should I prepare/conduct myself at the interview (dress, language, way of speaking, should I read up on current events, have a notebook for jotting down information?)?


These things may seem as if I am over worrying, however, I really do want to make the best possible impression on the advisor (As I suppsoe everyone wants to do on everyone).

Any input on these matters would be very helpfull.

Thanks

-PAN
 
#2
Spelling will be important in your CV, you need a personal details section qualifacation section and a personal statement.

The interview will probably be quite relaxed with the interviewer trying to discover your reasons for choosing the army, how well you have considered the army as well as knowledge of current affairs and how well rounded and spiffing an individual you are.
Dress for the interview should be suit if you own one if not a shirt and tie with trousers and polished shoes.
As for language and way of speaking be yourself if you try and be someone else you'll make an arrse of yourself and the interviewer will spot it.

As for taking a notebook I didn't I did however have a sheet of paper in my pocket with questions I wanted to ask which I checked at the end of my interview, which seemed to go down well.

Hope this is of some help

RH
 
#3
Panoptes said:
I have recently completed my GCSE examinations and, only today, I booked my first interview with my local (Officer) carears advisor, here in Belfast, Northern Ireland. As with all interviewees I was asked to prepare a CV and send it in as soon as possible. The secretary was very helpful, yet vauge on what I should put in the CV.

I have four questions:

1) How should I write the CV (For example, layout, language, what is important?, how the envelope/address should be displayed)?

2) What should I include in the CV (For example, I am a memebr of the CCF and have acheived academic awards in science and won various competeitions but, are the army really looking for my KS3 results? and what is most important to a carrears advisor?)?

3) What should I expect from the interview (how should the Advisor conduct himself and will he spring add questions on me to sub consicously guage my suitibility)?

4) How can/should I prepare/conduct myself at the interview (dress, language, way of speaking, should I read up on current events, have a notebook for jotting down information?)?


These things may seem as if I am over worrying, however, I really do want to make the best possible impression on the advisor (As I suppsoe everyone wants to do on everyone).

Any input on these matters would be very helpfull.

Thanks

-PAN
Panoptes,

I will answer your questions in order, but with a sinking heart:

1. There are any number of sites offering advice on CVs. Choose one and follow the guidelines. There is no standard, but ask yourself what information a CV is supposed to deliver, and ask yourself whether yours achieves that aim. If it doesn't, rewrite it.

2. This is a "kitchen sink job". At your tender age, you are unlikely to have achieved much. So, state what you have achieved, especially when it might be considered as useful experience. Prefect is good, Chav is not.

3a. The Advisor will conduct him/herself with complete decorum. You do not need to worry.

3b. Yes. Generally, the Advisor will be fully conscious and gauging your suitability.

4. Collar and tie or female equivalent. English is a good start. Both RP and Estuary are acceptable nowadays; the question is whether anyone from Durham, the Wirral, Cornwall, etc can understand you. Yes. Yes.

I hope that is clear. Please note carefully that I have not, as far as I can see, incorrectly spelled any word or mangled my grammar. Following my example will endear you to your Career's Advisor and might lead to a career in the British Army.

Litotes
 
#4
Thanks guys, I appreciate your input. I was wondering if there is anything I need read up on or get information on so as I'm not, as they say, "caught with my trousers down", as to what I want to do. I don't wan't to seem as if I'm messing the advisor about, wasting his time etc...

Also seeing your replies raised yet another question (could there be any more... HA), what should I be expecting at the end of it, what should I have arranged with him etc..?

Thanks

-PAN
 
#5
Have a look at the www.army.mod.uk then look at the careers section. From there decide which area of the army you wish to serve in, this is important because your advisor will most likely try to organise some familiarisation visits for you.

At the end of it you should expect to go home, possibly a handshake and depending on how the interview goes a feeling of elation burning in your breast, or despair in the pit of your stomach.

Good Luck

RH
 
#6
You could read the Daily Telegraph from cover to cover too. They have the most well informed reporting as far as military matters are concerned, but don't be afraid to search for alternative angles from the Guardian etc from time to time. This willl stand you in good stead for RCB in the future.
 
#7
Hi Panoptes

I had my interview the Colonel in Belfast just over a month ago and you haven't got much to worry about. He's a lovely guy, didn't try to trick me out at all and he does most of the talking, just telling you about what the job entails and the whole process you'll being going through. All he really asked me about were my reasons for the army (say "lifestyle", he liked that...) and my perticular regiment of choice. He'll Probably try to recruit you for the Gunners though... being a gunner himself. Don't be afraid to ask him any stupid questions you have, that's what he's there for.

Hope I've helped.
 

cpunk

LE
Moderator
#8
The answer is to...Cliché Alert!... be yourself. Nobody is going to try to trick you or fool you; just to see what you are like and whether you might have the potential to be an officer. Go to the interview with an open mind and make sure you've read what's available and have a clear idea about why you want to join us. That's about it really. Enjoy it.
 
#9
Thanks lads for all your advice, it was greatly appreciated. If anyone has any specifics on the Lt. Col. in Belfast that would be great, though you have helped greatly.

Thanks

-Pan
 
#10
As for things to read up on, perhaps...
-Army kit/future kit
-Recent army deployments and why
-Important members of the government (p.m, home sec, defence e.t.c)
-Regiment of choice , their role, kit they have, where they are based

As for how the advisor will treat you, they scottish one is famed for shouting at the candidate, asking random questions and giving you no time to answer
- 13 x 16
-where is the european parliament based e.t.c

(what they are trying to do is fluster you, if you get flustered by some questions, how would you react to 30 odd squaddies??)

keep cool and think before you ask any bone questions, need anymore help them p.m me or ask here.

BeastAS
 
#11
Hi Panoptes, If you want to look like you put in effort, create a portfolio together consisting of a cv, cover letter and all your achievement certs in it. Ensure it is well presented and layed out in a logical order. Ensure you are on time for the interview and well dressed, i presume you are a guy so a smart pair of trousers and a shirt would do. Be aware of the jobs they may offer and have at least 3 favourites, so if you dont get one then you have a back up plan. Be yourself, be polite, be confident and most of all enjoy it, it is easy. You can ask leading questions and that way you can turn the interview around to your advantage by ending up interviewing him such as ask him, for example in the trade i have choosen what are the career prospects and the usual time frame for this. If he asks if you can do the run at that present time the answer is yes lets go for it. They are not there to catch you out to be honest they want you, so all you have to do is show you are capable of our lifestyle. I did all of the above and the major loved me for it and i did my interview in the same place as you are going to do yours. Good luck PS if you need any further help pm me.
 
#13
At the end of the day he is a careers adviser, not an assessor. If he thinks you're doing something wrong in the interview, such as body language or your CV needs sprucing up a bit, he'll tell you.

The bulk of what we went through was RCB. Only a few quick-fire questions on time/speed/distance but only to get a flavour of what it's like in RCB.

Just be open and honest with him and make sure you ask him everything you want to know. I'm going in as a non-grad and was expecting a big lecture from him about why I should go to college etc but he supported me and my decision.

There's not much point in me being anymore specific than that as everyone's interview is going to be different. Just enjoy it if anything.
 
#14
Well, this seems like a good place for a first post, don't want to a start a new topic when this seems like a good place...

I know it might sound silly to some of the older guys around here, but I'm 15 and I'm almost certain that what I want to do with my life after I finish school is to join the Army as an Officer. I've got more recruitment packs than I need, I've seen the recruitment DVD 1000 times or more, I know the Army Jobs website like the back of my hand. I've become obsessed.

The thing is, when do I get the ball rolling? I'm about to start my last year of school before sixth form, Year 11, and I've already completed several GCSEs that I'll be finding out the results of at the end of August. I'm pretty set on the idea that I'm going to get through sixth form with my A-Levels and then apply for the RCB and then onto Sandhurst as soon as possible once I've completed that, but right now I can't be certain. I haven't even thought about what A-Levels I want to do yet, let alone if I'm going to want to go to university. I know all the benefits of being a graduate and all, but again this is something I could use advice on from an adviser. Right now my train of thought is that three years as an officer is better preparation than three years in university, but that's another topic altogether.

I have numerous forms to fill in to express my interest in becoming an Officer, but when's the best time to do it? Do I do it now? I'm a little nervous about going in for an interview already, I don't turn 16 until November, but at the same time I want to take advantage of these sponsorship schemes that are available for sixth formers and I'd love to get some of the basic stuff out of the way before I even start the sixth form, it'd make things a lot easier later I'd imagine. As I said, I'm only halfway through my GCSEs, so I've not really got much to put down on my CV.

Any advice from anyone? What do you think I should do? Any advice is good advice, I've already soaked up a lot of things from this forum already, I must say it's a great help for anybody. Thanks guys.
 
#15
Panoptes said:
If anyone has any specifics on the Lt. Col. in Belfast that would be great, though you have helped greatly.

Thanks

-Pan
What do you want to know, his inside leg measurement, breakfast cereal preference or star sign? :?
 
#16
People often forget that it is a job interview they are going for.

You wouldn't go for a job with a firm about whom you knew nothing. Likewise, your knowledge of the Army should go a bit deeper than 'They're in Afg and Iraq'.

Back_at_RD said:
You could read the Daily Telegraph from cover to cover too.
Personally, I wouldn't bother. Buy 'The Week' instead, it distils all you need to know from around the globe and you won't look like you are trying so hard.



Oh, and spell Cereer properly :D
 
#17
Again, I must thank you guys for your help with this topic.

Sandmanfez said:
Panoptes said:
If anyone has any specifics on the Lt. Col. in Belfast that would be great, though you have helped greatly.

Thanks

-Pan
What do you want to know, his inside leg measurement, breakfast cereal preference or star sign?
No, Sand, I was simply wondering what he's like, as in his general demenor, his questioning techniques, whether he is exceptionally formal etc... Though his breakfast cereal preference may well be interesting. :)

Malik wrote: said:
As I said, I'm only halfway through my GCSEs, so I've not really got much to put down on my CV.
Though I'm not in the slightest way qualifed to say much on this, I myself am only 16 and have my interview really quite soon, I get my results on the 22nd. So I'll tell you what I am doing and maybe this will help.

I simply put down personal info: Name, Address, DOB etc... Then, because my interview is only a matter of days after my results, I have to put them down on my CV ASAP and send it off. I put down subjects I want to do at A-level (provided I get into L6) and then what I want to do for a degree (if possible), clubs and societies that I'm invovled in.

I'm sure the advisor will understand that at only 15/16 you'll have little qualifications. I just emphasised acheivements where I worked in a team and/or led a team.

Hope that helps in any way Malik!

Thanks

-Pan
 
#18
Yeah, thanks a lot. It just occured to me how close to actually signing up for this I actually am. I think I'll leave it for a few months until the school start talking to us about careers a little more, then I'll get that form sent off.

And good luck with your interview, don't forget to post all about it on here so guys like me know what to expect. :D
 
#19
Yeah, Malik, I understand, you're only 15, right? 16 in November? So there's no point in rushing, I mean don't sign on the dotted line until you are absolutely sure, thats why they have interviews and stuff, i think :?.

And yeah I will be sure to post exactly what happened at the interview, though it may not be specific to ALL interviews, but I'll pass it on nontheless, don't worry.

On a side note, if anyone considers commenting on this:

Don't you find that many of the people who come on this site looking for advice, espically before RMAS and before thier RCB, never come back and tell us EXACTLY what its like/ what to expect. This site is like a one-way system. I make a plea: GIVE SOMETHING BACK GENTLEMEN!
 
#20
Yeah, I noticed that. It seems like a lot of the guys on here have either 8 posts or 308 posts. The guys who ask what to take with them to Sandhurst, then the guys who stick around and support generations of soldiers to come.

Even if I do follow the officer path, I won't be ready for over 3 years, but thanks to these forums you could send me out today and I'd be able to buy exactly all the gear I'd need for RMAS. :p
 

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