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How to make sure your CV is Reply-ready

The facts

Reply is looking for graduates with degrees in IT-related or business subjects, who want to go into consulting, so make sure your CV addresses both of these aspects.
Consultants need to be creative problem solvers, who usually work in teams to use their skills to solve business problems.

The application process at Reply consists of sending in your CV and an informal personal statement. Recruiters at the firm tell us that they want to receive a clear, concise CV (no longer than two pages), which includes standard CV elements such as your education, work experience and extracurricular activities. So far, so standard. However, bear in mind that ‘Reply is looking to grow our network with graduates who share our passion for technology,’ says a William Hindmarsh, a talent acquisition consultant at the firm. He points out that applicants’ CVs must demonstrate a ‘keen interest in technology and consulting’.

Look at the job description 

It may seem obvious but start by taking a good look at Reply‘s jobs ads here on TARGETjobs, and make sure that you include any experience with any of the technologies mentioned there (eg Dynamic HTML, JavaScript, CSS, AJAX – requirements may vary according to the job advertised). Clearly, having an IT-related degree is not enough to demonstrate passion for it, however. Think of any extracurricular activities you take part in that involve technology – such as getting involved in a hackathon or learning a coding language in your spare time – and, more important, how you have used technology to solve a problem or improve something. Can you show that you like to keep on top of the latest technology trends?

Show off your consulting skills

Consultants need to be creative problem solvers, who usually work in teams to use their skills to solve business problems. Reply states that no previous consulting experience is necessary to apply for a role with the firm, but it wouldn’t hurt to show how your extracurricular activities have developed skills transferable to the consulting world. Top skills consulting recruiters said they were looking for in 2019 graduate applicants included grit, creative thinking, critical thinking, entrepreneurial spirit, problem solving ability and collaboration. Again, probably in your extra-curricular activities section, can you demonstrate that you have been part of a group effort – a sports team, or club, for example, and that you enjoy finding solutions to problems? Can you demonstrate that you could be relied on to make analytical, logical decisions? Make sure you include a few examples like these – having the technological knowledge will not be enough for Reply.

Make your cover letter work for you

Reply is looking for ‘an informal personal statement’ and is happy to receive a covering letter. Make sure your personal statement is specific to Reply, highlighting a couple of relevant achievements or skills that you think will show the firm that you’re a good fit. A covering letter can obviously be longer, but again, make sure the details you include all work towards showing Reply that you enjoy technology and enjoy solving problems. Consultants work with clients and colleague, so an ability to get on with different kinds of people is essential too.

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