In our efforts to make sure that our candidates are as confident and prepared for interviews as they can possibly be, London Works have partnered with Société Générale to provide pre-interview support for jobseekers from SG volunteers through a mock telephone interviews programme.
For many of our jobseekers, who often haven’t received training in interview skills at school or university, interviews can be the most intimidating part of the recruitment process. This is when the nerves can strike and candidates can struggle to communicate effectively. Even strong candidates with impressive CVs can tend to lack confidence, or are unsure how to demonstrate the skills and experience that they’ve got. Some have expressed fears that they might not be as prepared as other applicants from more traditional educational backgrounds, and others have had their confidence ‘knocked’ by previous interview feedback.
To boost their self-assurance before an upcoming interview, corporate volunteers from Société Générale have been delivering mock interviews and offering personalised feedback to our candidates, as well as giving general advice on interview etiquette and career progression. Even though candidates have already been through rigorous interview training with our consultants, the opportunity to have a mock interview with a corporate volunteer has proved invaluable, as it throws the candidate into an unfamiliar situation much like a ‘real’ interviewer with an employer.
Andrew Edmunds, a candidate who was interviewed for a Client Services role at CMS Cameron McKenna, and had previously been at the same company for 20 years, told us that his mock interview was “extremely helpful”. He was impressed by the amount of preparation that his volunteer had done, as the mock interview felt personalised to his own strengths and weaknesses.
Andrew’s volunteer, Jignesh Vaghadia, told London Works that he found it rewarding to witness his growth in confidence throughout the interview and that “it was a pleasure taking part in the initiative”. Société Générale employees have a range of valuable interview experiences and techniques and personal careers journeys to share. With a large pool of volunteers from departments across the bank, the most suitable volunteer can be found for each request. Employees are able to make the call from their desk at a time that suits them which is perfect for those want to volunteer but have time restricted work schedules. It also gives Société Générale volunteers the opportunity to develop their own communication and mentoring skills.
This employability programme fits perfectly into Société Générale’s Corporate Social Responsibility themes to; raise educational aspirations, improve employability prospects and build stronger communities. It was initiated through Société Générale’s wider CSR programmes delivered in partnership with East London Business Alliance (ELBA).
We hope that most jobseekers put forward by London Works for an interview will be able to take advantage of this brilliant opportunity, and we look forward to helping more candidates gain the confidence to represent themselves to the best of their ability in the months to come.