Monthly Archives: October 2014

Enhancing your Social Media Profile

News_45The world of technology for all its wonders invariably comes with complicated issues and dilemmas in job hunts, interviews and, even if you are the employed, the world of work.

Social media is a place to create profiles to effectively promote yourself. Futureboard looked into what employers look for and scrutinize when it comes to candidates on social media. It’s important to consider, however, what we can we do to enhance our online footprint. Not only is it a wonderful social tool but it’s an important way of promoting our personal brand.

  1. Activity:

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It is one thing to have a pristine, spotless account and quite another step up when you increase engagement online. For example when I created my personal blog I was hesitant of sharing ‘serious’ content on a platform like Facebook or Twitter. After all, most social media platforms are regarded as light-hearted places, often stereo-typically for procrastination and passing time. Interestingly though, the blog thrived when I started sharing content!

Sharing content is a great way to show your would-be employers an online trail that has nurtured your passion for a particular area of employment alongside personal content. Engaging with followers and friends (to a point) will drive your accounts into overtime which is an even better way to bolster your presence online. Don’t solely focus on your account, focus on others accounts. Go from one-dimensional to multi-dimensional.

  1. Connecting:

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  • Don’t just add friends and follow people – engage with them. At the end of the day it isn’t it about how many followers you have it is about who’s following you.
  • Ensure that you have URL that leads to your company or website.
  • Don’t just join groups – participate in them.
  • Don’t just post updates to update – ask yourself what your connections and would-be employers want to see and share (Hint: Short videos and pictures can increase audience engagement rather than simple links)
  1. Expand upon Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn:

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Utilize these other social media platforms that will enhance your online strategy and presence. Don’t be solely mainstream, go that step further than then next person.

Buffer: is a software application designed to manage social networks, by providing the means for a user to schedule relevant posts to Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. It will save you a lot of time and hassle if you are busy and can’t use social media frequently.

JustUnfollow: Filter out and erase inactive and spam followers.

Twitter Analytics: Measure and boost your impact on Twitter, TA measures engagement, provides useful stats as well as graphs which indicate the level at which you are making an impression online.

Klout: is a website and mobile app that uses social media analytics to rank its users according to online social influence via the “Klout Score”, which is a numerical value between 1 and 100.

Tweetdeck: An interface consists of a series of customisable columns, which can be set up to display your Twitter timeline, mentions, direct messages, lists, trends, favourites, search results, hashtags, or all tweets by or to a single user while shortening URL length to save characters. You can filter what you do and don’t want to see on the Twitter feed.

WordPress: Create a blog, it will make you a more coherent writer which is so often overlooked. You don’t have to be Shakespeare, but you have to be professional and often succinct in the eyes of your employers. A blog can channel your passion for an area of employment. You can become more helpful to those around you and you can quickly become a good conveyor of resourceful information in a specialised area to a professional degree.

Matthew

Futureboard Testimonial: Tom’s Story

Tom’s career was established straight from the onset of life at Nottingham University; he wanted to go into the technology industry and develop his career within the given industry. “It was always the plan from when I started university to use the computer science degree as a starting point to become established in the sector.”

Tom attended an evening event hosted by Futureboard (whom he had recently found on LinkedIn) which had been arranged by between Futureboard and Nottingham University‘s Comp Society in October 2012.  This is where he got a good feel for what the  graduate scheme that Futureboard discussed had to offer. While his career path was decided he believed the event increasingly focused his options in his final year of university and provided him invaluable insight into the scheme.

He said “The event wasn’t like the standard lecture that many other companies do, it was informal and down to earth where it was quite easy to ask current graduates on the scheme and Futureboard about the opportunities involved and how to apply.”

Leaflets and details were distributed to curious graduates alongside Tom and there was also the chance to chat with both Futureboard staff and BT graduates after the initial presentation with food and drink on offer.

A few weeks after the event Tom started the application process with Futureboard which included; an online application form with competency questions, followed by some online tests which helped filter out competition for the roles on offer. After passing the online tests he had phone interview with Megan which included background questions and questions about relevant work experience. This was followed by a video Skype interview with Nick the latter of which included job specific questions in software engineering and the role he was applying for.

Days later he was invited to an Assessment Centre. It included a group exercise, an individual interview and an analysis exercise.  Within a few weeks Tom had a job on the graduate scheme at BT after receiving a call from Futureboard! Afterwards, he was provided with positive feedback regarding the assessment centre process and his positive performance and tips in terms of improving performance and development.

Throughout, Tom described his experience with Futureboard as “Really useful! The team were extremely prompt and proactive, I didn’t have to wait for weeks waiting for responses which often the case when going through the processes of application and interviews” and “they got back to me in a matter days in both a professional and efficient manner in all areas including feedback” On top of that he also described the Futureboard experience as “very friendly and warm”. The team was helpful and answered all the queries and concerns he had while working through the process.

His role as Graduate Software Developer involves analysis, logical thinking, teamwork and a great attention to detail. Typically, his role includes designing and programming systems, which means he’s actively involved in talking to clients and colleagues to assess and define what solution or system is needed. His communication and technical skills are crucial to the role.

I asked Tom of his plans for the future and he replied that he was looking forward to completing the graduate scheme. “This role has set me up for the foundations on which I can build a great career within the technology industry.”

Futureboard wishes you the best of luck with your future in the technology industry, Tom!

Matthew

 

Futureboard are working on a range of technology roles ranging from software development, to security to network engineering. Please do get in touch with us on 0203 179 4505 if you’re in your final year and want to utilise your Computer Science or Electronic and Electrical Engineering degree. We can help!

 

Jobs and Degrees amidst Technological Development and Revolution

technological-revolution

What you do with a degree whether it is business, history or computer science is a matter of personal interests and preference. Graduate jobs, like your modules and degree course undertaken, vary a lot in content, required skills and so do the opportunities available to you as a graduate.

Nevertheless possessing a degree that is particularly relevant to Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) in an age of technological revolution and innovation give the average STEM graduate a considerable advantage in the job market. Variety is considerable and opportunities are vast.

There hasn’t been a more exciting time to be working in IT. With the advent of cloud computing and the proliferation of open/source software development, the number of emerging technologies to work with is growing at an incredible rate. With the ‘digital natives’ or ‘Generation Z’ on their way into the workplace (who are said to be adept at multi-tasking and being ‘naturals’ with technology, online and social communication and presence) these are exciting times!

As Rachel Maher from Impact International quotes “almost half of those on graduate training schemes (47%) plan to harness technological innovations in the future….when integrated correctly such development can create virtual worlds that are both…collaborative…instantly accessible and a rich and knowledgeable community.”

The pace of software and technology is moving so fast that there are always new and fascinating areas to venture into and so the field never gets tiresome. It is about constant innovation working with experience, the more traditional ideas tried and tested with the more modern and sophisticated programming be it hardware or software.

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However as more programs are developed in these ‘virtual’ or ‘open-source’ (free distribution of code amongst people who program in their spare time and professions) communities by individuals and companies (large and small) it is not only beneficial to independent or corporate organisations. It is valuable to the global technological community which is constantly being improved tested, not by trial and error but by trial and seeing how someone else tackles particular technological developments and offers wider and more diverse software.

Technology, like many other businesses requires a mixture of individual’s and profiles and not simply introverts who love to code. They need business leaders to manager technical projects, graphic designers to create memorable brands, business developers to sell their products and entrepreneurs to innovate and make bigger things happen.

The technology industry is becoming increasingly appealing to the current and emerging generations. There are endless opportunities and unlimited boundaries and horizons. There are ‘thousands of paths’ in IT and that is the beauty of technology that many other sectors cannot offer.

Companies are expecting graduates outside of the technology sector to have competent and innovative skills when it comes to technology and there are even examples of students taken an optional year out of their degrees to do a one year degree in computer science. The pressure to stand out is enormous and adapting to that is both a demand as well as an opportunity. Futureboard is working with some exciting technology companies and will be on campus at a variety of universities over the next 8 weeks and we hope to find you in good stead as university life begins (or continues) for many students across the country. The universities we will be at include:

  • Aston
  • Essex
  • UCL
  • Sheffield
  • York
  • Birmingham

Futureboard are working on a range of graduate roles across a range of sectors (including technology) and our campus tour 2014/15 aims to facilitate discussions with, and provide opportunities to, student groups, societies, clubs and individuals.

When looking for the ideal career choice amidst the all-consuming pressure of exams and dissertations, it can be difficult to stop, ponder and think ‘What are my priorities right now?’ but we can assist you! If you would like to have a chat about; CV’s, interviews or general career advice in technology, meet us on Campus, send us a tweet/email and we can arrange a time to have a coffee!

Matthew and Lottie

 

Here We Go Again: Futureboard are on Campus!

“If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.”

Milton Berle

 

Futureboard will be on campus at a variety of universities over the next 8 weeks and we hope to find you in good stead as university life begins (or continues) for many students across the country. The universities we will be at include:

  • Aston
  • Essex
  • UCL
  • Sheffield
  • York
  • Birmingham

Futureboard are working on a range of graduate roles across a range of sectors (including business and technology) and our campus tour 2014/15 aims to facilitate discussions with, and provide opportunities to, student groups, societies, clubs and individuals.

We are happy to work with any size of group to discuss graduate job search concerns and the challenges you’re facing, or perhaps how you can improve at assessing your own skills and applying these to different opportunities and ultimately, a job you love. Whether you’re a small committee or a whole society, we’re keen to flex our approach to aid your knowledge and progress.

Futureboard has the advantage of working in close partnership with graduate employers and so has a deeper level of understanding of what employers expect from candidates and as a result, what candidates need to do to tackle the graduate job market successfully.

When looking for the ideal career choice amidst the all-consuming pressure of exams and dissertations, it can be difficult to stop, take stock and think ‘What are my priorities right now?’ but we can help! If you would like to have a chat about; CV’s, interviews or general career advice, send us a tweet/email and we can arrange a time to have a coffee! …/pub quiz!

Matthew and Nathan

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