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University is an education in the broadest sense. Our University section will enable you to make the most of your time at University and take advantage of all of the opportunities available to you.
Making the most of your time at University
In this section you can find all the advice and guidance you need as you apply for jobs and prepare for interviews.
In the Recruitment section there is a wealth of information about completing applications forms, online tests, and the various stages in the recruitment. Whilst the Disability section provides advice on how to manage your disability during the recruitment process including information on how to inform an employer of what you require and referring to your disability during an interview.
Managing Your Disability
The Organisations section is where you can find out about various organisations, the opportunities they offer and their individual approach to disability.
Profiles / Stories
It’s always great to hear from those who have been successful.
This section profiles many individuals, working across different industries, at various stages of their careers. Their interviews demonstrate that is possible to have a successful career regardless of whether or not you have a disability. They also illustrate the adjustments that can be made in the workplace.
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For anyone navigating the recruitment process it is a time-consuming and often stressful experience.
For individuals who have a disability or long-term health condition it may be even more time-consuming and stressful as you potentially will have additional considerations to think about. These may include requiring adjustments or support, whether or not to refer to your disability during the interview and how to manage your situation amongst other candidates.
The following sections aims to address many of the common issues and concerns raised by students with a disability or long-term health condition.
The application stage is the first interaction between you and the employer. It is therefore important that you present yourself in the best way that you can.
The information to include in your application and how it should be phrased are two important considerations for every applicant. For individuals who have a disability or long-term health condition, there are also extra factors to consider such as:
The following sections provide advice that is relevant to any individual applying for jobs, as well as addressing issues and challenges that are specific to those with a disability.
Whilst it is natural to feel concerned about the prospect of referring to your disability it could also be an excellent way of demonstrating your skills and abilities. Dealing with the daily challenges of having a disability naturally enhances your competencies, strengths, and coping mechanisms. By not talking openly about your disability you may be hiding the competencies that an employer is wishing to recruit.
When screening your application form, employers will take genuine mitigating circumstances relating to your disability into consideration. However, you need to be very clear that it is due to your disability otherwise it gives the impression of not being capable or not being bothered.
I'm a hard-working, self-motivated team player with a real interest in investment banking.
This may be true however you need to substantiate this:
Many recruiters use online testing as a way of screening applicants and reducing the number being taken through to the interview stage.
There are various types of tests, these include but are not limited to numerical, verbal reasoning, logical and personality.
You must inform the recruiter of the adjustments you require prior to taking the tests; leaving it until afterwards is too late and you may not be given the opportunity to re-sit them.
If you do well in the testing stage, and your CV / application form impress the recruiters, the next step is usually a telephone interview.
The telephone interview is quicker and more convenient for both you and the interviewer. However, they can be a challenge since neither party can see the other, so the usual visual clues are absent.
If you are unable to participate in a telephone interview as a result of your disability, or are likely to find it difficult, you should inform the recruiter of this. The telephone interview may be replaced by a face-to-face interview.
In addition to thinking about the main points that you want to convey, your additional preparation may include: researching the firm, reading recent press articles and thinking about any questions that you may have for the interviewer.
An interview is your chance to come face to face with representatives of the firm and to really show them that you have got what it takes to be successful in their organisation.
As well as thinking about how to answer questions, if you have a disability or long-term health condition you will also need to decide whether to discuss or refer to this during the interview. You may also need to request any adjustments or support you require during the interview in order to demonstrate your potential.
This section looks at all aspects of preparing for and undertaking an interview, including the additional considerations for someone with a disability.
In terms of disability, the interview is not an opportunity to discuss what adjustments you might need if you were to be offered a position. It is highly unlikely that the interviewer will bring up your disability or what support you require. However if you wish to talk about it during the interview, you can mention it in your questions as the interview is coming to a close.
Many organisations use behavioural or competency-based questions as part of their selection processes where the interviewer will be looking for specific examples about exactly what you achieved or demonstrated in such situations. Try to find out in advance if the interview is competency-based and prepare accordingly.
Remember that everyone should draw upon a wide variety of examples to answer questions to demonstrate your range of experience. By mentioning your disability in this way, you are in control of the conversation and can project a positive image for your interviewer. However, you should not use disability-related examples for too many questions.
An adjustment to the interview process will enable you to be assessed on an equal basis to your peers.
If you do require an adjustment it is your responsibility to communicate this to the organisation in plenty of time to enable them to both source and implement what you require. Failure to do so may result in your interview being delayed.
The assessment centre is usually the final stage of the selection process.
If you have a disability or long-term health condition you may need an adjustment to be made for the assessment centre even if you have required one before now.
For those of you with a visible or noticeable disability, or if you need an obvious adjustment, you should think about how you manage this with your fellow applicants in terms of whether you feel you need to say or explain anything.
Assessment centres will provide you with an opportunity to meet with a number of representatives from the organisation.
Each exercise will be designed to assess any number of skills, attributes and / or competencies in order that the assessors can gain an overall picture of your ability and suitability for the role.
Remember, they want you to do well and have invited you to this stage because they believe you can.
Either way you will need to engage in open dialogue with the organisation about what your needs are.
Remember that recruiters are dealing with many, many applicants and it is therefore understandable that they may need you to remind them of your requirements.
If you do decide it would be beneficial for the other candidates to know, you need to think how you will inform them - whether you inform them yourself or ask the recruiter to do this on your behalf.
By now you will have begun to build a rapport with the recruiting organisation. The more open and honest you have been about your situation earlier in the process the easier you will find it to have these conversations at this stage.
Ensure your application / CV highlights your achievements in a clear yet concise manner and that any gaps are carefully explained.