Four things you need to do this recruitment season

By Miranda Geng

Staff Accountant | Audit and Advisory

If you’ve ever looked at your dream job posting and thought “I wonder if this is possible”, I’m here to tell you that it is if you start planning now. Here are four tips to incorporate into your plan.

Plan your path

The recruiting cycle for accounting internships and full-time offers usually begins in September and can start as early as first year university; it’s different for each person depending on the position you want and what your plan is to get there. Personally, my journey looked something like this: It began with the Deloitte Apprentice, which included interviews; Deloitte National Leadership Conference, with more interviews; an internship; and then a full-time offer at Deloitte.

Be aware of deadlines

Every company has specific sign up and application deadlines. It only takes one event, including the people you meet there, to change your career direction so set up reminders to sign up and apply early because popular events fill up fast. Take advantage of everything – information sessions, networking events and office tours. When attending these events, print business cards and trade them with people you meet along the way; these people could likely be your future colleagues!

Create a top-notch application

Keep your application full of actions and numbers to provide hard evidence of your work. Job experiences and grades are very important, as are extracurriculars. Go to your career centre and have a professional counselor review and edit your resumé and cover letter. While you’re there, sign up for a few mock interviews to help you practice your interview skills. Bring three copies of your cover letter to every event and interview to hand out.

Find and ask people to be your references early on. Don’t stress about asking for references -- the worst outcome is that you need to find someone else. If they say yes, remember to send them the job posting, your cover letter and resumé and tell them when they might be contacted.

Practice answers to commonly asked interview questions

If you still stumble over your elevator pitch or how to answer the standard “tell me about yourself” question, practice in front of a mirror until every detail flows smoothly. Know the exact dates, places, and what you did in your previous roles to prepare for follow up questions. To answer “why are you applying for this position”, really think about why you’re applying for this job. It doesn’t need to be a grand saving-the-world reason, but it should be well thought-out and true to yourself.

One last interview tip is to know your own stories, both from previous jobs and general life experiences. For instance, if you have travelled make sure you can talk about several memorable moments or locations. Build a collection of stories or examples to pull from for various questions. This will also help during the 45,678,985 times you’ll need an ice breaker in the future.

Miranda is a recent graduate of the University of Toronto majoring in Economics and specializing in Accounting. She is currently a Staff Accountant at our Toronto practice.

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