Ideal candidate

November 7, 2017, by Carla

What Makes an Ideal Candidate? We Ask the Recruiters

By Jennifer Balloch, Employability Officer: Faculty of Science

During this year’s Science and Technology Fair, we sought insider insights into what recruiters look for. We asked employers across a range of sectors: “what makes an ideal candidate?”

Here’s what you need to know. 

What initially struck me, was the enthusiasm everyone has for the company they work for. They also spoke frequently about the importance of personal qualities in their ‘ideal candidate’; not just skills.

1. The ideal candidate is passionate

The number one driver mentioned time and time again was the importance of ‘passion.’ Symphony Gold, NCA and the Army all reiterated this point. As Bakkavor highlighted, research into the industry is key. The more research you do into the sector and company, the more you understand about the culture of the organisation. The more you know, the easier it is to demonstrate your passion.

2. The ideal candidate is curious

Another quality mentioned by a number of companies, but especially Boots, is to be curious about the business as a whole. For example, although Boots is a pharmacy-led health and beauty company, they were at the fair looking to speak to computer scientists. They offer Software Development and Digital Graduate Programmes, so they want to know about your skills in these areas and why you’re interested in their sector.

3. The ideal candidate demonstrates character

Another tip is to try to demonstrate your character. How can you show that you are friendly and personable? LittleFish look for a friendly approach, while Unidays want a “positive personality” and Boots think “people skills’” are vital.

So how do you showcase this during the recruitment process? Think about your body language. Pay attention to how you interact with people form the minute you arrive at interview. Equally, you need to highlight these qualities alongside transferable skills, such as communication and teamwork. Remember though, different qualities are important to different employers, so do your research.

If you’d like to speak to a member of our team about any part of your career planning, book an appointment with a member of our team. We can help with all of aspects of the recruitment process.

Posted in Applying For JobsEmployer Insights