"It's not Christmas yet, what are you saying? It's not the most wonderful time of the year..."
But yes, my little monkey minions, it _is_ the most wonderful time of the year: recruitment season will be upon us in a mere week or two!
For all of us who didn't doSA, or maybe didn't procure a full-time offer, or maybe are tired of off-cycle rejections, or mayb -- you get the picture; these next couple of months are important to a lot of people on this website. But in the heat of the moment, it's easy to forget what's important as we enter recruitment. Lots of us have class, others have jobs, so I'm here to dish out some last-minute reminders that could help you out as you're scrambling to perfect every part of your application.
There's no questioning it: WallStreetOasis has a ton of awesome information. Maybe even too much awesome information for the casual lurker (as opposed to those of us who are veterans and may or may not have a life outside of this site). Most of this information will help you in some tangible way during recruitment, but sometimes people forget that the "Search" function exists and are in a deer-in-front-of-headlights scenario when looking for something specific on WSO. I guess I can't help you with that directly, but I can help you by making a reminder list of things that you need to prepare for as you enter recruitment, which might spur some curiosity and desire to seek out all of that great information.
No need to beat around the bush: let's dive right in.
1. Get your resume reviewed
Whether you do this through WSO's paid Resume Review Service, the public , or just have a bunch of friends read through your resume is no concern of mine (well, maybe I'm a little biased towards using WSO, but I'll live), but having your resume thoroughly reviewed is pivotal. "Well, duh you get your resume reviewed, reading this post is already a waste of my time." False. Even when you think your resume is 100% perfect -- there's a good chance that it's NOT. After you've read it 50-100 times, it all begins to sound so good, and any mistakes that you might have made grammatically or even spelling-wise (!!!) become harder and harder to notice. "Thomson ONE" is _not_ spelled "Thompson ONE", dashes should all be uniform, etc etc etc. Bottom line: never hurts to have a fresh set of eyes (or 10 sets) look it over before you send it out -- better be safe than sorry.
2. Make sure your clothes are right
Don't walk into an interview with a pinstriped suit that's five sizes too big because Pops gave it to you. There are literally a million threads about fashion on this website (oh you WSO fashionistas...), but the bottom line is that you need a charcoal or navy suit, well-fitting, and a conservative shirt and tie. I just received a navy suit from Indochino for $379 and the fit is spectacular -- I recommend using that service (takes 3 weeks) if you don't have a suit and are on a budget.
3. Follow up with your contacts
Hopefully by this point you've had some , hit it off with certain people, and are comfortable asking them to support your candidacy for a position during recruitment. If you haven't (God help your soul), it might not be too late to start reaching out to alumni in addition to using resume-drops through OCR. If you're not on campus and you haven't done a ton of networking -- better late than never. Ask your contacts if you should also apply through OCR/web portals, or if them sending your resume along is sufficient. You want to make sure all of your bases are covered with this one.
4. Find an interview practice buddy
So you've read the WSO behavioral and technical guides. You've thought about the questions a lot. You think you can answer them pretty well. Hell, when you answer them in your head, they sound downright perfect -- no way you don't land an offer. False. This will be one of the hardest, if not the hardest, years for full-time recruitment. Stumbling during your story or during the "why banking?" question is strictly not an option. Find an interview partner, either in real life or in the ethereal world of WSO. Hell, I'll be your interview partner if you PM me.
5. Have a back-up plan
Let's face the facts: we're not all gonna make the cut. Having a back-up plan is crucial so you don't end up back at your mom's house, depressed and unmotivated. As was previously stated, this year is going to be difficult for recruitment, and it's important to remember that not getting an offer isn't the end of the world and there is a lot out there that you probably aren't even remotely cognizant of that also represents a good career choice. Thankfully, banking recruitment occurs relatively early, so you still have a lot of options if things end up not working out. Hold on to some chips just in case your opponent has the nut flush; no need to go all-in yet.
6. Make sure you are mentally prepared for the task at hand
What I mean by this is you have to block out everything going on in your life that might make you sad, anxious, depressed, etc. when you're going through recruitment. Things are going to go a lot smoother and feel a lot better if you feel confident about yourself as you go through interviews, phone chats, and everything in between. This means you need to do whatever puts you in the best state of mind in preparation for the next two months: exercise, yoga, meditation, sauna, or whatever else you need to ensure that you're in tip-top shape. There's plenty of time to lament and be emo if you don't get an offer (you shouldn't do this, see bullet point 5), but if you're sad now, leave that shit at the door, because it's not helping you.
That's all I have for you today ladies and gentlemen. Hopefully this post reminds some folks out there of the approach they need to take during recruitment, and how important it is to be prepared in many different facets. Hope you enjoy reading this and stay classy.