If you have ever applied for a chemistry, immunology or other science job and been asked to take part in a pre-hire assessment or employment test, you will likely understand the pressure that many candidates feel during this part of the science recruitment process.

In addition to gruelling interviews, many science employers are now subjecting applicants to tests of their aptitude, personality, skills and job knowledge to determine whether they are the right candidates for their vacant science jobs.

So, what are our tips here at Hyper Recruitment Solutions for progressing through such tests with flying colours?

Understand personality tests

One of the most popular forms of pre-hire assessment, personality tests give recruiters a greater understanding of the individual behind the application. Unlike other forms of assessment, personality tests have no right or wrong answers and are instead designed to measure the 'traits' associated with success and performance. Companies looking for a team leader, for example, will be seeking friendly and outgoing personality traits from this assessment.

Personality tests also help to uncover the honesty and integrity of the people taking them . Indeed, some employers use validity scales to detect attempts at misrepresentation, so you could damage your chances of employment if your answers are dishonest or exaggerated.

Stay calm and relaxed

If a prospective employer sees that you are nervous or worried during a pre-hire assessment, they may question whether you will be able to handle the day-to-day tasks of the job. Although some interview nerves are perfectly normal, you should be relaxed enough to  be able to think clearly and deliver the best possible interview performance.

Science recruiters using a pre-hire assessment normally rely on a number of factors to determine whether you are right for the position, so don't be disheartened if you underperform during a particular task. You can still rely on a strong CV, a good interview, experience and solid references to help you land that dream science job.

Take time and understand the task at hand

Some employment tests can be undertaken in the comfort of your own home, but many are performed at employer premises as part of a fuller formal interview process.

Depending on the type of activity that you have been asked to complete, you should ask the recruiter how much time you will need and ensure you use that time effectively. A proper understanding of the nature of the task will also inevitably help you to perform better, so ask questions when possible and read the instructions carefully.

Prepare in advance

Preparation is always key before an interview. Make sure that you can confidently tick off everything on your pre-interview checklist and familiarise yourself with the questions and tests ahead of time when possible, preparing answers to the questions that you think you may be asked. The more preparation you do, the higher your chances are of impressing and succeeding during a pre-hire assessment.

If you are presently looking for an exciting new role in a science or technology-related field, check out our latest advertised vacancies from a host of employers here at Hyper Recruitment Solutions, one of the most trusted recruitment agencies in a wide range of highly specialised science fields.

how to tailor your cv

It takes time to craft the perfect CV that will land you job interviews and maximise your opportunities as a current or prospective professional in a science field like biotechnology, FMCG or pharmacology.

Although some candidates may be able to cope with a one-size-fits-all resume, tailoring your CV to individual job specifications is often vital to increasing your chances of securing a job interview and in turn, landing an all-important job offer.

Get the basics right

Before you can begin to tailor your CV to a specific job role or company, it is important to start with a strong, well-written generic CV. Collate your accomplishments, experiences, qualifications and any additional information that you consider appropriate – the importance of extracurricular activities, for instance, should not be ignored – to give employers a chance to understand who you are.

Find the job you wish to apply for                                           

The first step to tailor your CV is finding a science job for which you would like to apply. Conducting analysis of the qualifications and experience that top employers seek will help to give you an understanding of how to structure your CV – for example, placing a degree above job-specific training may be advantageous when applying for a particular role.

Remember that here at Hyper Recruitment Solutions, we advertise many great science jobs on our website, so whether you are on the lookout for your next big opportunity in regulatory affairs, quality assurance or bioinformatics, we are a great place to begin your job hunt.

Edit according to the job description

Reviewing job descriptions and editing your CV accordingly is the best way to begin the tailoring process. Arrange your CV so that your stated qualifications and accomplishments nicely match the requirements of the given role for which you would like to apply, and describe your work experience in the context of the job description. Recent graduates, for example, may want to gear the content of their CV towards their education, while those with experience in a junior science role may want to describe the valuable skills they acquired from it. 

Mirror the recruiter's language

Closely mirroring the specific 'buzzwords' that appear in a job specification will allow you to further tailor your CV and show the given science recruitment agency or employer that you understand their position and its requirements in full. Spending some time on the prospective employer's website and mimicking their language and style in your CV also allows you to research the culture and values of the organisation so that you are prepared in the event of being offered an interview.

Network for insider information

Use your professional network to find specific leads and contacts that you can use to your advantage. Ideally, get into an informal discussion with an employee from your targeted organisation for insights and insider information that you can use to sharpen your CV to the role.

Final thought

Although tailoring your CV for every job for which you apply can be time-consuming, it's true that hard work pays off. You should always try to avoid sending a generic, untailored CV to a prospective employer. Not only does a generic CV tend to communicate a lack of care and attention, but it can also waste both your own time and that of a prospective employer, increasing the likelihood of your application being cast away to the bottom of the pile.

Knowing how to tailor your CV to the science jobs for which you yearn is vital if you are to secure those all-important interviews.

  

Even though the unemployment rate is falling year by year, there are still some 1.67 million people out there who are not in work but are actively looking for a job. This doesn't count the many people who are currently seeking a career change and interested in the science jobs that we routinely advertise here at Hyper Recruitment Solutions.

In short, there remain plenty of people out there looking for a new role. Therefore, there are still plenty of people attending - and feeling nervous about - job interviews.

If you are one of those people, here are just some of the most common interview questions and how to respond to them. 

Common Job Interview Questions

  • "What attracted you to this job?"

This is one of the most predictable and common job interview questions. However, it is also one that requires you to do your research about the employer in advance and then demonstrate it at the interview. While detailing your knowledge, you should also try to tie it into the skills and interests that you feel make you suitable for the role.

In the process, you might draw attention to such aspects of the organisation or department that you admire as its stated values or client base.

  • "Can you tell me about yourself?"

You've already detailed your work history on your CV that the interviewer has (or at least should have!) already read, so this really does need to be a summary rather than a rambling soliloquy.

This is a good opportunity to draw attention to particular aspects of your candidacy that you would like the interviewer to remember, and to talk about your personality and ambitions in a way that enables the interviewer to positively envisage you as part of their team.

  • "What are your weaknesses?"

As this is such a common job interview question, it has become horrendously clichéd to respond by citing a quality that clearly isn't much of a weakness at all, but actually a strength. For example, "I work too hard" or "I'm too much of a perfectionist".

However, it may be even worse a strategy to deny that you have weaknesses, given how this can make you appear arrogant or lacking in self-awareness. Instead, cite a genuine weakness - such as insufficient self-confidence or a lack of expertise in a particular area - that you are working to improve.

  • "Describe a situation in which you led a team"

Teamwork and leadership are a required element of many science jobs. This common job interview question is designed to discern your capabilities in planning, organising and guiding other people's work, as well as in motivating those people to perform their duties.

Therefore, you should describe the situation where you led a team, your role in the group and the overall task being performed. Examples of suitable situations to cite include when you led a group project at university or put on a music or drama production. You should cover not only the results, but what you learned from the process too in your answer.

  • "Where do you see yourself in five years' time?"

Many candidates worry about offending the interviewer in their response to this question by saying that they would like to have moved on from the position they are interviewing for in five years. However, this is an acceptable answer in most cases - after all, science employers do like to see determination and ambition in their candidates.

However, it is advisable to try to keep such ambitious talk within the context of the organisation within which you are seeking a role.

There is definitely an art to answering the most common interview questions, one that we can assist you in perfecting as a candidate with our leading science recruitment agency. 

Remember that we also provide plentiful opportunities for those searching for science jobs online in the complete range of fields, from pharmacology and FMCG to bioinformatics and engineering.  


It can be tricky to take the stress out of job interviews. However, one of the most effective ways to do that - whether you are being interviewed for a biotechnology, medical, R&D or indeed any other science role - is to have a few questions to hand yourself.

While a lot of candidates for science jobs realise the value of asking their interviewer some questions - not least in showing initiative and interest in the vacancy - too many simply waste the opportunity by asking obvious questions to fill the time.

If you want to show your seriousness and suitability as a candidate, consider these five questions to ask your interviewer:

1. "What are the key priorities in the first few months of this job?"


You'll learn something from the answer about the day-to-day challenges and constraints of the role. However, you should also bear in mind that you may be asked in turn for your own ideas of what the key priorities should be - so have an informed answer ready.

2. "What size of team and what other teams would I be working with?"


Not only does this question help to convey your team-player credentials, but it can also glean useful information on the kind of working environment and people that would await you in the role. This enables you to judge whether you would get along well with colleagues and be a good fit for the organisation's culture.

3. "What could I do to contribute to this organisation or department's success?"


This is the question that business owners and your interviewer have probably asked themselves often enough, so hearing it from a candidate creates an instant connection, signifying your seriousness about furthering their deepest wishes for the organisation or department. It communicates your instinctive wish to assist the organisation or department with its aims.

4. "I recently learned from X that Y is happening. What impact will this have on the business?"


It's a good idea regardless to read up on the organisation that you are seeking to join as much as possible prior to the interview, as well as about what industry rivals are doing. This will enable you to ask the above question, marking yourself out as having a real interest in and understanding of the department, company and wider industry - and enter a meaningful conversation as a result.

5. "What are the qualities needed to excel in this role?"


This is a direct appeal to the interviewer to outline once more their most pressing priorities for the vacancy, perhaps allowing you to expand on areas of your own strength as a candidate that weren't touched on during the main interview. It's a great question for directing the conversation, especially if you enquire about the importance of a certain characteristic and the interviewer responds in the affirmative, giving you an opportunity to describe your qualifications in that area in greater detail. 

Ending the interview by thanking the interviewer for their time, reaffirming your suitability for the post and requesting information on the next stages of the selection process helps you to make a great final impression. Join us here at the leading science recruitment agency Hyper Recruitment Solutions, and you can benefit from the highest standard of interview advice. 

Many of those pursuing science jobs will have been extremely unsurprised by the recent news that almost one in four British workers are actively seeking a career change, with job satisfaction among Brits hitting a two-year low.

But if you are one of them, are you doing the right things to accelerate your progress up the career ladder? Here are five of the best ways of ensuring exactly that.


1. Have a definite career plan

It's staggering to think of how many people seem to have merely 'slipped' into their present career with no definite plan. Of course, you don't have to be certain about everything if you want to get ahead, but it's nonetheless advisable to have constructive goals of both short term and long term nature and periodically review your progress against a predetermined timescale.


2. Build your network

The old saying that 'it's not what you know, it's who you know' has more than a semblance of truth. It's why, whether you are seeking science jobs of a clinical, FMCG, medical or completely different nature, you should keep attending all of the relevant industry events and refining your social media presence - for which you may be interested in perusing our guide to using LinkedIn. 


3. Investigate variations on your existing career path 

You may be qualified for a wider range of science jobs than you may think - or if you aren't, you may be only another course or contact away from an interesting new path. Be willing to relocate or accept a pay cut for a certain period of time if it offers better long-term prospects.


4. Keep a running file of achievements

If it can be done in a way that doesn't come across as overly pushy, it can be helpful to embed examples of your competence in your boss's mind. You may, for example, send them an email each week outlining everything extra you did during the last seven days over your basic responsibilities. Or why not forward them a note with every instance of positive feedback from a client, perhaps reminding them how thankful you are to have secured this client and how valuable they are for the organisation?


5. Demonstrate your leadership potential

Employers love to see workers who show confidence and initiative above the norm - in short, who demonstrate through their present role that they have the potential to take on greater responsibility in a more senior, management position. Great leaders consistently demonstrate that they can make decisions, accept the consequences of their actions and set a good example, all of which are likely to make you a strong candidate for future promotion within your present company.

In today's extremely competitive job market, every step that you can take to maximise your employability makes a difference. One other such step could be engaging a science recruitment agency to assist you in landing your rewarding next role in chemistry, molecular biology, immunology or another in-demand science field.

Simply contact Hyper Recruitment Solutions now for the most tailored help in working up the science career ladder.   

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