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Application guide

At Oxfam we already have an amazing team of committed professionals who believe that we can end poverty and we need more of those!

In order to achieve our goal we need to continue recruiting talent into the organisation, so Oxfam's Talent Team have developed this simple guide in order to support you to making a great application.

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Jim Holmes

Oxfam has established recruitment processes that are designed to help managers ensure they are equipped to attract and recruit amazing people through a fair and transparent selection process. Each role will have a job profile which provides detail of what the role involves and the relevant skills and competencies we are looking for which are used as the basis for selecting people for interview and appointing the successful candidate.

Applying for the right job

It is important for you to know what you are looking for and to also consider what your longer term career goals are. We would recommend that you take the time to think about where you are now, where you want to be and then think about the additional skills or experience that you may need to gain. In following this process it should help you focus on what's realistic now whilst thinking about your next steps in order to develop further. If you believe you have the appropriate skills, experience and knowledge then submit your application.

Standing out from the crowd

Now you have found the ideal job vacancy you will need to stand out from the crowd in order to secure an interview. Is your CV up to date? Have you adapted this according to the job criteria? What are your strengths? Are these evident in your application? Have you captured your key successes relevant to the role? Have you written a covering letter? Use these to emphasise your suitability and explain why you want the role and why you are the best person for the job. This is your opportunity to sell yourself and convince the Recruiting Manager that you will be a valuable asset to the team.

Making sure you don't miss anything out

Take your time, try to prepare your application a few days before the closing date and then review your application thoroughly before submitting your interest. Some vacancies require different sets of information, and have specific areas for you to complete as part of the application process. Make sure that you are clear about what you are required to do and complete all relevant areas as thoroughly as you can.

How to do a cracking interview

Preparing for the Interview So you have secured an interview - Congratulations! In advance of your interview make sure you do your research. What do you know about the organisation, the Team, and the role? Have a think about how you would see yourself within the team and what tasks or projects might be expected of you. Review the job profile and your application; think about the key successes or achievements relevant to the role that you would like the Interviewing panel to hear about. The interviewing panel will be looking to test each candidate against the criteria set out in the job profile. This is your opportunity to demonstrate you have these and are the best person for the job.

The selection process

The way in which we conduct interviews may vary depending on the level of the role and where in the world the candidates or Recruiting Managers may be. There may be an initial telephone interview followed by a face-to-face, Skype or video conference interview.

A good interview involves more than how you answer the interview questions, first impressions matter and it is important that you are able to present yourself appropriately so:

  • Know where you are going
  • Don't be late - leave enough time for traffic delays
  • Dress smartly but comfortably
  • Be friendly - Smile, be positive, demonstrate confidence
  • Maintain eye contact with the person speaking to you
  • Listen to the questions, and ask for clarification if you are unclear of what's being asked
  • Give simple answers and use examples to demonstrate your knowledge where possible
  • Demonstrate your achievements
  • Be confident but don't be too bold or brash
  • Speak clearly and tell the truth

At the end of the interview you will usually have the opportunity to ask questions. Have a couple of questions prepared in advance which demonstrate your interest in the role.

Assessment methods

As part of the recruitment process you may also be asked to undertake a case study assessment, presentation, verbal and numerical reasoning tests, personality questionnaire or group exercise. You will always be told in advance if you will be asked to complete one of the above assessments. These assessments are designed to give you the best opportunity to demonstrate your skills, knowledge and experiences in relation to the position.

References

As part of the application process Oxfam normally asks you to identify two referees of which one should be your current or most recent line manger. For each reference, a contact name, a postal address and email are mandatory for this section. You must also indicate whether the referees can be contacted before interview. The referees will help the recruiting manager to make a final decision about an individual's suitability for a position. Any offers of employment will be subject to satisfactory references. Please note that referees are usually contacted only if Oxfam wants to offer an individual a position.

Our commitment to Equality and Diversity

Oxfam GB's commitment to equality applies to everything we do. Externally it is at the heart of our work on poverty and the relationships we build. Internally the value of inclusivity is central to how we accept, respect and value people with diverse identities and backgrounds. Oxfam sees having a diverse workforce as a significant advantage for our business.

Oxfam GB views Diversity as a description of the visible and invisible differences that exist between people, such as, gender, race, ethnic origin, physical and mental ability, sexual orientation, age, economic class, language, religion, nationality, education, and family/marital status. Oxfam recognizes that these visible and non-visible differences between people can also lead to differences in experiences, values, attitudes, ways of thinking, behaving, communicating and working.

In order to implement and monitor our commitment to Equal Opportunities and Diversity, we kindly ask the candidates to fill in our Equal Opportunities Form. None of the Recruiting Team have access to this form at any stage. Note that some questions are mandatory others are voluntary. All (except date of birth) contain the option 'I do not wish to disclose'.

If you have any further questions, go to our Frequently Asked Questions. Good luck with your application!

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