Thoroughly researching employers is the key to successful job hunting.
What do I need to know?
Researching prospective employers is a vital part of the job application process. It's important to be armed with knowledge of the company whether you are preparing to make speculative job applications or about to attend an interview.
Things to look out for
- The company's culture, mission, and values – Is this the kind of company you want to work for?
- The skills and experience the company values – Do you have these skills? If not, how can you develop them?
- Key people within the company – Do you have any connections within your network?
- News and recent events – What are the company working on at the moment? What is important to the organisation?
- The company's key clients, products, and services - What can you find out about the industry and their competitors?
- Recruitment processes – Are applications online, in person or do they use a specific recruitment agency?
Where to look
- Visit the company website and read their 'About' section and other pages containing facts about the company.
- Follow the company's social media accounts.
- Use LinkedIn to connect with key players at the company.
- Visit Glassdoor - A valuable source of information to prepare for interviews. Employees contribute salary information, reviews, and interview questions for job seekers to use.
- Read market research - They contain useful information on companies, giving details on competitors, an overview of the environment in which a particular company operates and future development opportunities. The most well-known example are Mintel reports. The Prospects Directories and Targetjob publications list employers who regularly recruit new graduates and give details of the type of vacancies on offer as well as key contacts so you can look for further background information.