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This is how you get your foot in the door at a top organisation

20 Apr 2018

Job searches can be exasperating affairs, especially when you feel like you don’t have the networking connections to get to where you want to be. This week in Careers, we examined some of the ways you can get opportunities with top firms.

The phrase ‘get your foot in the door’ may become extinct in years to come. Many of the methods of career progression it alludes to are no longer congruent with the modern jobs market.

If you think of ‘foot in the door’ literally, it might reminds you of bygone days where pounding the pavements with résumés in hand could land you a role.

Nowadays, especially in larger organisations, showing up without an appointment to talk about your background will likely not do you any favours in your quest to network and get new opportunities.

A foot in the door also can refer to the phenomenon of taking a lower-level position in an organisation and then slowly working your way up the ladder, in a kind of ‘from mailroom to boardroom’ approach.

This approach isn’t necessarily compatible with the modern world, as organisations are becoming flatter, hierarchically speaking, and the looming AI revolution throws the validity of everyone’s skills – regardless of career level – into question. So, what can you do in these confusing times to get opportunities?

This week in Careers, we tried to address that question by talking to some of the people getting their start in organisations, and to some of the top companies about what they seek in applicants.

Interning has become more widespread in recent years. However, concerns have been raised that it fails to equip young people with skills for the working world and essentially amounts to exploiting free labour from those needing experience.

Can you blame the graduates of today for being a little wary? EY intern Sarah Murray, however, had no reservations about undertaking a placement with the organisation. We spoke to Murray about what made her experience at EY so beneficial for her career and beyond.

But how do you put yourself in the running to work at some of the top companies in the country, as Murray did? We headed down to Big Four professional services firm PwC to find out how it recruits the best and brightest talent.

We also attended the National Institute for Bioprocessing Research and Training (NIBRT) annual biopharma careers event on 14 April, and chatted to some of top biopharma companies about what they look for in prospective hires.

There are many factors that will influence whether you want to work for an organisation, but how can you be sure you’ll like it there? As the people at Voxpro explained, company culture is so integral to an employee’s ability to thrive in and enjoy a new position. For this reason, the company is always watchful to see whether prospective new hires will enjoy the culture at Voxpro.

On the jobs front, Palo Alto-based cloud data management company Rubrik announced 50 new roles in Cork, hiring in areas such as IT, sales and customer care – so, if you’re looking to get a start in the cloud computing sector, you’re in luck.

For more on any of these stories, follow the links below.

1. ‘I had heard from other graduates that EY was a great firm to work for’

While many interns are often disappointed to find that they are relegated to fetching coffee, EY intern Sarah Murray is happy to report that her skills were utilised at the firm.

2. Want to work in biopharma? Here’s what the top companies want 

Some of the big companies in the biopharma industry recently gathered at NIBRT to find top talent. We found out exactly what they’re looking for.

3. Rubrik to create 50 roles in Cork at new cloud data management centre  

Rubrik will broaden its operations in Cork as part of continued investment in expansion throughout Europe.

4. This is how PwC hires the best and brightest talent

If you’re vying for a role at PwC, be prepared for informal interviews and group exercises designed to help you show who you truly are to the senior partners.

5. Why do jobseekers need to think about company culture? 

How do you know a company is going to be the right fit for you? We spoke to some of the people at Voxpro about the company culture and hiring process there.

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Eva Short
By Eva Short

Eva Short was a journalist at Silicon Republic, specialising in the areas of tech, data privacy, business, cybersecurity, AI, automation and future of work, among others.

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