Closing dates – not always what they seem!

We have had reports from students and recruiters that by the closing date some graduate schemes are already full.  Thus those that apply later on may not be considered.

Recruitment and selection procedures differ between organisations for good reason, what may be suitable for a company advertising one job is not really going to work for another advertising 300 places.

 There are a number of basic methods:

  1.  A closing date is issued and all applications are reviewed after this date, interviews follow.
  2. A closing date is issued but applications are sifted as they are received – (possibly in batches) and interviews happen as they go along but no decisions are made until after the final closing date.
  3. Applications are accepted on a first come first served basis, interviews and selection centres fill up as they go along and successful candidates are notified. If there are lots of good candidates who apply early and get through the selection procedure there is a chance that there may be no positions left for those who apply later but still before the closing date.

 How do I know which method a company will use?

Often you don’t unless you ask or it is clearly stated on their website / recruitment literature. There are some clues though: 

  • Long closing dates – 2 or 3 months from advert to end date.
  • Interview and selection centre dates advertised before the closing date.
  • Big graduate recruitment schemes where large numbers of places are advertised and large numbers of applicants expected.

All these are possible indicators that methods 2 or 3 may be used. 

This is also true of postgraduate study – some courses have deadlines others don’t but in general it’s best to apply early. 

So the lesson here is …. apply as early as you can (but do a good job a rushed application is likely to be full of errors)

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