If you’re going for a job interview, you’re probably dreading the interviewer asking you to talk about your biggest weakness – and that’s totally normal. This very common interview question puts you on the spot and requires you to evaluate and talk about yourself in a somewhat negative way.
To minimise the risk of freezing up or saying the wrong thing, there are a few things you can do to prepare yourself for this question:
Understand WHY interviewers ask this question.
It might seem a little strange for an interviewer, who should be interested in your achievements and experience, to want to know about your biggest weakness. But the reason they ask this question is quite simple: they want to get past your smart, rehearsed interview façade to understand what you’re like as a person and what you’re like to work with.
Answer the question in TWO parts:
1. Identify your weakness.
- Don't deny that you have weaknesses.
- Choose a weakness that doesn't directly relate to the job.
- Try not to get defensive or talk about yourself in an overly negative way.
- Don't try to disguise a strength as a weakness - try to be honest.
2. Talk about how you're working on it.
- Give an example of a time your weakness caused an issue at work, then explain how you resolved it.
- Give examples of the ways you plan to work on your weakness (if you haven't started working on it already).
- Be positive and confident - having weaknesses isn't something to be embarrassed about. Everybody has them!
Plan your response to the question.
It is quite likely that the interviewer will ask you about your biggest weakness - this question is so common at this point that it's on the verge of becoming a cliché - so we recommend preparing a constructive answer ahead of time.
- Think carefully about your weaknesses and write them down.
- Look at the job specification and highlight the key skills and attributes required for the role.
- Compare your list of weaknesses to the key requirements of the job. Exclude any weaknesses that might give the impression you're not suitable for the position at all - e.g. don't give shyness as your answer if it's a customer-facing role requiring strong interpersonal skills.
- Compose a strong answer relating to the remaining weakness(es).
Example of a good response:
Scenario: You're applying for a job as a lab technician. This job requires meticulous attention to detail and safe practices.
Good Answer: "I am not very good at public speaking. I get very nervous; I'll happily put my ideas forward when working in a small team, but on a larger scale, I do tend to struggle. However, I have arranged to go back to my university and give a talk to current chemistry students about my experience on the course - I'm hoping that this will help me to improve!"
Bad Answer: "I really struggle to be organised. My friends and family say I'm a bit of a slob, and I'm always breaking things accidentally. There's not much I can do about it, though - that's just who I am!"
Here at Hyper Recruitment Solutions, we can offer lots of helpful advice if you're applying for a job in a scientific sector. Click the link below to browse our latest job listings.
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What do you need in order to land your dream job? One word: experience.
Recent studies show that two thirds of employers seek graduates with relevant work experience, as this better prepares them for working life and helps to develop their general business acumen. Additionally, one third of employers reportedly feel that job applicants do not possess enough knowledge about their chosen career.
But developing your business skills and career knowledge isn't the only reason why work experience is important. There are several other advantages the you can gain from getting a taste of working life before seeking a permanent role.
Why work experience is important:
- Exploring your options - If, like many people, you are not yet sure what career path you'd like to take, work experience provides a great opportunity for you to see what it's like to work within a certain industry. This can be a deciding factor in the role you eventually choose for yourself.
- Displaying your enthusiasm - If you already know what career you'd like to pursue, gaining work experience within your chosen field will demonstrate your passion and interest to potential employers when you send them your CV. Employers like to hire individuals who want to work for them because they're genuinely interested in the role, not just because they need the money. Gaining work experience in your preferred industry will show a high level of commitment, which can increase your chance of future success.
- Identifying your strengths and weaknesses - Work experience can be a great teacher. While working within a real-life work setting, you'll have the opportunity to assess your abilities more clearly. Skills that you developed in school and university can be put into practice; you'll also be able to learn what skills you do not possess, and perhaps begin working to develop them.
- Networking - Work experience will give you many options to network. You'll get to know a number of potentially useful contacts, and they'll get to find out what you have to offer. Even at this early stage of your career, networking can provide benefits that will last throughout your working life.
- Discovering opportunities - Frequently, employers who take on individuals for work experience end up offering those individuals permanent positions within the same organisation. Neither employer nor worker can really know how well the candidate is going to perform prior to the beginning of the placement, but after some time, the employer may realise that the worker can bring lasting benefits to the company. This is particularly common among undergraduate students whose courses include a placement year; once the placement is finished and the student has gained a considerable amount of knowledge, their employer will often offer a full-time role for after graduation.
As you can see, work experience comes with a number of important benefits, all of which can help you to secure your dream job.
If you are interested in working with the science industry. Hyper Recruitment Solutions can help you to take the next step in your career. We work with the biggest and best organisations in the UK science industry, helping talented individuals to fill vital roles and drive the sector forward. Click the link below to see a full list of current vacancies.
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Information Systems and Technology is a rapidly-growing sector and has been for many years.
Commonly known as IS&T, many different jobs exist within this field, with more and more continually emerging through the evolution and growth of the industry. From Software Development to Data Management and Cyber Security Engineering, there are all kinds of IS&T roles for all sorts of different people.
But what are the skills needed to work in the IS&T industry and to become successful within this sector?
With such a broad range of roles available, employers within the IS&T industry look for a variety of different skills when seeking out new recruits. Some may seek candidates with expertise in a specific programming language or piece of software, while others may look for a more generic skill set. Here are just a few examples...
Key IS&T Skills
- Communication – Contrary to the stereotypical view of IS&T professionals as socially-awkward introverts who struggle to talk to other human beings, communication skills are actually imperative within the IS&T industry. This is due to the cross-departmental nature of many roles within the field, where individuals are needed to work across many groups and teams. IS&T professionals often have to supply technological solutions for individuals who lack their expertise, and they are often called upon to discuss problems and solutions in a way that’s easy to understand. Additionally, IS&T professionals are often expected to present ideas and reports to other individuals and groups within the business they work in, again requiring good levels of communication.
- Time Management – Many professionals within the IS&T sector are required to be self-motivated and self-managed, and a huge aspect of being self-managed requires the ability to have excellent time management skills. Work may often take longer than planned to complete; therefore, as an IS&T professional, you should be able to accurately evaluate how long a specific assignment is going to take to finish and then have the ability to stick to deadlines, whether that’s on a daily, weekly, monthly or task-by-task basis.
- Coding – Coding is one of the very basic skills that any IS&T professional should possess, as it’s a skill that the vast majority of employers in this sector look for. If a business is looking to hire a programmer, the employer may seek an individual who is competent in multiple languages. Even for roles that may not specifically involve coding, an IS&T candidate should at least have a working knowledge of the simpler coding languages (such as C++ and HTML) and an understanding of the code-writing process in order to participate in software development projects and manage things such as quality assurance. Coding, however, requires more than just aptitude with languages - it requires logical thought, good problem solving skills, the ability to utilise various technologies, and of course an extensive understanding of information systems.
- Networking – Networking is an extension of communication and concerns the ability to gather groups of people within a working environment to share the things that they know. This is done in order to shape a system of knowledge that is bigger than the parts within it.
These are just some of the many, many skills that a candidate looking for a position within the IS&T industry may be expected to have. Some roles require more specific skills; it is therefore recommended that, before you apply for any IS&T role, you read the full job description and are aware of all the skills required.
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When it comes to picking a job, we all want to do something that will make a real difference. A worthy career path is something that many people look far but far fewer actually find. So how can you land a life-changing job that will make a real, positive difference in the world?
At Hyper Recruitment Solutions, we are dedicated to connecting passionate, talented candidates with fulfilling jobs for which they are well-suited.
There are many life-changing jobs within the science and technology industries. We connect people with jobs that help to create life-saving drugs and life-changing technologies that benefit the whole population. We have a huge range of opportunities within the science industry - browse our latest science jobs here.
Become a Life Changer with HRS
We also consider our own job to be life-changing - after all, we connect people with careers that make them feel rewarded and fulfilled!
We currently have a range of life changer job opportunities available here at Hyper Recruitment Solutions. By helping us to find the right people for the right jobs, you can take satisfaction in knowing that you are helping to make a difference in other people's lives.
Available roles include:
- Recruitment Manager
- Principal Recruitment Consultant
- Senior Recruitment Consultant
- Trainee Recruitment Consultant
- Recruitment Apprentice
At HRS, we combine traditional recruitment practices with modern recruitment techniques. We enable our recruitment employees to not only change the lives of others but also live more rewarding lives themselves. We offer structured development in individual careers and allow the opportunity for everyone to grow in their roles.
If you're interested in becoming an HRS life changer, you can learn more about our life-changing job opportunities here.
'Technology' is a very broad term that covers a number of different sectors, all of which include all sorts of exciting and fascinating ob opportunities. Tech jobs are important as they shape so much of the world we know, as well as how we live, communicate, travel, eat and so much more.
If you are considering a career in science or technology, it may be hard to know where to start. We at Hyper Recruitment Solutions are dedicated to finding all the latest opportunities within the science and technology industry, and to pairing talented and passionate individuals with the up-and-coming companies that are currently recruiting new employees.
We are constantly updating our job listing pages, with new tech jobs being added to our database every day. To see our full list of jobs in the technology sector, please click the following link:
Technology covers a huge range of jobs, so once you've decided that this is the direction you would like to go in, you can then look into the more specific paths. This may include tech jobs in:
- Food technology
Not only are tech jobs diverse, they can also be very rewarding. This is because they often allow the employee to be a part of some exciting developments while also earning a great salary. This is what makes tech jobs so appealing, and this is why finding a job in technology is often a very competitive race.
Hyper Recruitment Solutions helps you through every part of the job search process, which makes it far more likely that you'll ultimately find work in your preferred field. From creating your CV to finding the right job opportunity and preparing for the interview, we can help you to land a job that you will be truly passionate about.
If you are still wondering where to find a tech job, please get in touch with our team of friendly specialists. We are more than happy to help you find a position that suits your skills and qualifications - contact us today!