GRADUATE JOURNEYS | ANNA & EUAN
08 Dec 2017
Following on from the launch of our 2018 Grad Scheme, we sat down with two of our graduate consultants; Euan who joined our Fintech team and Anna who is on our Machine Learning & Artificial Intelligence team, to find out how they found the whole process, from interview stage, through to successfully billing for their teams.
We're currently on the hunt for more amazing graduates to join our ever growing team in St. Albans, so please get in touch with Emily for further info or to apply!
Q. Can you tell us a bit about your background prior to starting your recruitment career with UR?
Euan: "Before understanding recruitment I was a student at the university of Leeds doing chemistry and maths. Before that I went to school in St Albans so I've kind of gone full circle."
Anna: "When starting at Understanding, I had just finished my Bachelors from the University of Birmingham; specializing in American Literature, History and Politics. I then went on to gain some experience in marketing and sales."
Q. How did you first hear about us?
Anna: "I was thinking about career choices and started focusing solely in Recruitment and Sales work – When I saw the advert on Understanding, I was drawn to their values as a company and success rate."
Euan: "I'd played with the idea of entering the world of recruitment and applied for a couple of roles. My CV was on the job boards and Emily approached me about joining UR."
Q. What appealed to you most about the role?
Euan: "Once I'd read a bit about the company, I really liked the culture they had produced where customer service and understanding the needs of the client and candidate was paramount. This was then reinforced when I came in for interview and saw the atmosphere in the office - there was music playing and a pool table so that made me think I'd fit in pretty well to what appeared to be a social bunch!"
Anna: "The atmosphere of the company is really encouraging and supportive, as well as the opportunity to join a new and upcoming team; Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence."
Q. How did you find the whole interview process?
Euan: "The interview process was definitely comprehensive, I met loads of the senior members and the two directors. Then I had a role play and finally a presentation to finish, which I actually really enjoyed doing. What was great was that it was a two way process and gave me the chance to learn a lot more about the job and what kind of qualities were needed to excel."
Anna: "The interview process was a lot less daunting than I originally expected, Emily Thomas made me feel really welcome and it was very informative. The directors and team leaders were also very friendly and made me feel relaxed."
Q. What have you enjoyed the most in your role so far?
Anna: "The people within my team have been really helpful and guided me through the training process. I've also enjoyed learning more about Machine Learning & Artificial Intelligence, which is what my team specialises in."
Euan: "The thing I have enjoyed most about the role so far is the highs you can get when a deal comes through. It isn’t an easy job and the hours can be long but that makes it completely worth it when you get that feeling! One of the big things I wanted was a job that was actually exciting, and those kind of moments make this role very exciting."
Q. What difficulties have you faced?
Euan: "The difference between recruitment and almost any other job is that some of the process is completely out of your hands! This means that there are days that are phenomenal like when I made my first deal. But there are some really tough days as well so I think one of the hardest things is being able to control and deal with your spectrum of emotions that you get every day. At the same time that's what makes it such a brilliant job because when you do get those highs, they feel all the better!"
Anna: "The hours can be long and you can’t expect to work the standard hours if you want to succeed. It's a job for hard working, high achievers with progression as a driving force. With this, comes opportunities for promotion to not only increase your base salary, but also improve your commission structure."
Q. Could you give us a brief overview of your typical working day at 'UR?
Anna: "I start my morning around 8.30am with coffee - then I begin my sweeps, check adverts, cup of tea, LinkedIn searches and then lunch and continue, in between this a lot of calling and qualifying."
Euan: "A typical working day is arrive and check my ad responses, phone anybody that looks really good! Then I look through my assigned job board and phone anybody who looks promising on those. In the afternoon I tend to do a more specific search for a particular role on LinkedIn for instance. At the same time as all of that I am organising my candidates who are in for interview and making sure I keep control of the whole process. It's a real challenge organising it all but at the same time there's loads of variation and you do get to chat to all sorts of people during the day."
Q. Lastly, do you have any advice to any graduates considering following in your footsteps?
Euan: "My biggest piece of advice is to have confidence in yourself, getting a degree is a huge achievement and one you should be proud of. Now is the next opportunity to be the best, so don't sell yourself short at the get go."
Anna: "Make sure you are ready to work hard and you will definitely get what you give."
As our company continues to grow, we're not only expanding the number of employees in our St. Albans office, but we're also expanding internationally and opening a new office in Boston, Massachusetts - 2018!
Written by Paul Marks.