Tuesday, July 28, 2015

An intern’s guide to writing CVs and impressing at interviews

Hi I’m Lizzie, a current editorial intern at GTI Media (the parent company of TARGETjobs). As an intern, I am very familiar with the process of applying for work experience; I’ve been through it! Here are some key pieces of advice that I’ve learned on writing a good CV and covering letter, and how to impress at an internship interview. 

Writing your CV and covering letter

My key pieces of advice for applying for internships are to thoroughly research the companies that you want to apply for before you write your applications, and to tailor each CV and covering letter to what the individual job advertisement asks for. If an employer puts a list of skills or attributes they want candidates to have, go through the list and explain how you have them/give examples for each on your covering letter. If they ask for your earliest starting date, put one! If they put a name on the job description, address your application to that person – if there is no name, either see if you can Google who to address or phone up the company and ask.

Here are some resources that I found useful when applying for internships. 

Presenting yourself well at interview

You should take internship interviews just as seriously as you would interviews for permanent roles; securing an internship could make a huge impact on your future career! Dress smartly, show up about 10–15 minutes early, give a good handshake, smile, make eye contact and be polite – don’t let being nervous make you come across as uninterested or rude! Preparing answers to common interview questions beforehand can also make a big difference to how well you come across during the interview.

Although you should have researched the company when you applied, you’ll need to do it again to refresh your memory the day before your interview, and to see if there are any updates. Also, if you have to travel quite a long way to get to your interview, plan your route in advance and make sure you know where you’re going when you arrive.

Once you are invited for your interview, don't forget to check out advice on how to shine in your work experience interview

Article written by Lizzie Akass, TARGETjobs Editorial Intern. Connect with Lizzie on LinkedIn.