We'd like to congratulate Sawda on securing a placement role with PA consulting. She'll be working in IT transformation for the next year before returning to her university, QMU London, in 2019. Read on to hear about Sawda's application experience and to see what tips she offers for nailing your own application.
Why did you apply to PA Consulting?
I had heard of PA Consulting before but I didn’t know what sort of job opportunities they offered until I saw them on Bright Network. Having looked them up online I found that they used technology and ingenuity to create solutions to the problems their clients presented them with. This emphasis on innovation and the use of technology was what initially attracted me to the firm. Looking deeper I discovered that they were also developing AI automation. As I am hoping to study AI automation in the future I felt that working for PA consulting would also prepare me for the rest of my university education.
What was the application process like?
Initially, I had to submit my CV and cover letter. After this, I had a telephone interview before being invited to an assessment centre. At the assessment centre we had to do an interview, an individual case study task and a group exercise. For the case study I was given a package with information on a client and their business. I then had to argue how the client could best improve their business with the use of technology. In the group task we were given a selection of different pathways a business could take. We then, as a group, had to decide on one pathway and present to our assessors our arguments for taking this pathway.
Did you find the Bright Network FESTIVAL useful?
I massively benefitted from visiting the Festival. I got to work on my networking skills which helped me with my later applications. Importantly, I got to speak to a lot of different firms, too. Finally, it helped me realise how many companies are out there and certainly brought a bunch of companies to my attention which I had previously never heard of.
What three tips would you give to your fellow Bright Network members?
- Keep on applying, don’t let yourself become de-motivated!
- Research the company you’re applying to in detail, really tailor your application to them.
- Be yourself, if you’re not you’ll get found out and look an idiot!
What was the hardest interview question you faced?
I always found the hardest questions to be ones that are specific to the role or sector you’re applying to. Make sure you’ve researched your role and sector well in advance!