It’s now over three years since I applied for my summer internship position at Grant Thornton however the challenge of completing various application forms for different firms is still fresh in my mind. These forms can be a bit of a nightmare at times so with this in mind I thought I would give you some of my top tips. Bear in mind though that these are only my opinions and not a guaranteed way to get a job at Grant Thornton!
My first piece of advice and probably the most important is to apply early. Grant Thornton’s applications have already been open for a month and candidates are already progressing through the application process. Roles will start to be filled making it less likely that you will get an opportunity to interview. What’s more, after Christmas you are likely to be focussed entirely on university or A-level exams and job applications are the last thing you want to be thinking about!
Secondly, I would recommend tailoring your responses to each firm you apply to. Whatever you do, don’t just copy and paste! Each firm tends to have a set of competencies which reflect their values. You need to think carefully about how they apply to you. Grant Thornton’s competencies are adaptability, initiative, ownership, building business relationships, business insight, results driven, influencing, critical thinking, motivation. Sometimes it can be difficult to think how these apply to you so I preferred to write a list of things that I had done and then consider which competencies these things demonstrated. For example, giving tours of my department at university could have been an example of building business relationships and influencing skills. Or my year abroad might have demonstrated adaptability and motivation.
Another tip would be to print your form out and read it through. Don’t make spelling and grammar mistakes – it looks like you haven’t put any care into the form. I would recommend getting a friend or parent to read through it too. It can be difficult to spot mistakes when you’ve spent a long time working on something.
I could carry on writing application tips for pages and pages but this brings me to my final point; be concise! Even though there are no word limits on the questions this isn’t an open invitation to write your life story. Thousands of applications are received each year so you need to make sure you get to the point and don’t waffle.
Good luck with your application and, as always, feel free to ask us questions on the forum, Twitter or Facebook.