Getting on Track

What college graduates need to know when looking for jobs

KPMG is helping to turn college graduates into young professionals

Accounting firm KPMG’s online program, offering a suite of resources that help students navigate the competitive world after graduation, was created in an effort to not only find the best talent, but also help groom them. The site’s Branding U toolkit specifically focuses on helping graduates with the process of standing out and impressing employers through online assessment tools, interview strategies, and real-world examples, says Kathleen Schaum, West Coast-based director of recruiting for KPMG. To aid in providing information that would best serve graduates, KPMG polled hundreds of recruiters to get a sense of where interviewees fell short. These were a few of their findings:

In your eyes, which of the following is the most common shortcoming among candidates seeking a job?

Improper attire                   0.58%
Lack of etiquette                 30.99%
Resume failings                     15.79%
Poor interviewing skills       52.63%

When deciding between two very close candidates, what is the number one behavior that typically gives a candidate an edge?

Attire                               0.00%

Confidence &                   56.73%

Asking appropriate          5.26%

Eye contact/                    13.45%

Solid answers to the      24.56%

What is the one key element that always gets your attention from an interviewee?

When a candidate uses                64.53%
relevant aspects of previous work
(paid or volunteer) to demonstrate
that they can do the job

When a candidate shows             28.49%
an understanding of the role and asks insightful questions

When a candidate                           6.98%
acknowledges limited
experience but expresses
that they can do the job and asks for it

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