5 ways to receive feedback on your job application

5 ways to receive feedback on your job application

Posted November 21, 2023

So, you applied for a job but unfortunately didn’t land it. Want to know what you can do to boost your chances next time? The first step you can take is to request feedback on your job application – it can provide you with invaluable insights which you can take with you moving forward. So, how exactly can you go about this? Talent’s Melbourne Managing Director, Simon Yeung, provides his recommendations:

1. Be timely and specific

Yeung suggests asking for feedback relatively quickly after finding out you were unsuccessful, “your application will still be fresh in their mind, so they can provide you with relevant and detailed feedback”. It’s also a great idea to go in with specific questions so that the hiring manager can really hone in on what you want to know. You can ask what they perceived your greatest weaknesses to be, or whether your qualifications and experience were sufficient. You want your feedback to be as clear and specific as possible. This will allow you to easily identify where improvements can be made, and will enable you to work towards being that ideal candidate in future.

2. Maintain a positive attitude

Yeung says that “maintaining a positive attitude is key”. Don’t go in on the defence when seeking feedback. Go into it with a positive attitude. You aren’t going in there to interrogate the recruitment manager as to why you didn’t get the job – you want feedback as to how you can improve in future. Make sure to frame it this way when approaching the topic. Enter with an angry mindset and the manager will be thinking “phew, we dodged a bullet”. This isn’t what you want to be remembered for.

3. Make improvements

Yeung suggests “asking questions for self-improvement”. Ask relevant questions that will allow you to make improvements to become the best version of yourself you can be. Taking the time to collect this feedback and to self-reflect, will allow you to do just this. Maybe it involves upskilling or gaining more experience. Whatever it may be, be open to making changes and making the most of the opportunities this feedback can bring.

4. Don’t take it to heart

Yeung advocates for having a thick skin when asking for feedback, “Don’t be too sensitive when it comes to receiving feedback. It is meant to be constructive”. Use it as motivation to be your best self. Maybe your qualifications or experience aren’t there, and that’s fine. This particular job probably wasn’t the right fit – now have the opportunity to apply elsewhere,. Otherwise, this is the perfect opportunity to update your skills so that you have a greater chance of landing that role, or similar, in future.

5. Take it on board

Yeung’s key takeaway is to “listen and listen!”. Take note of the feedback, reflect on it, and use it to ace your next application. The way you handle this feedback is also a reflection of your character. Handle it gracefully and professionally, and you won’t be burning any bridges – it may just be that they even consider you for a future role!

Being rejected from a job isn’t fun, but consider it a learning experience. Gather your feedback, take it on board and you will be one step closer to landing your dream role.

If you’re looking for a tech or digital role, check out our job search for hundreds of opportunities.

How to smash a video interview

How to smash a video interview


So, you’ve just been told your next job interview will be done via video. But don’t panic! Yes, remote interviews can present some challenges, but they also have many benefits – for example, you won’t need to travel to the company’s offices, or take any time off from your current role.

With the right amount of preparation, you should feel just as confident doing a video interview as you would in a “normal” one. So read on for our top tips on acing your video interview!

1. Be prepared

This is true of both in-person and video interviews: preparation is key. Look into the company (using websites like LinkedIn and Glassdoor) and the person/people you’ll be speaking to, and spend some time reading through the job description and matching it to your CV to see which of your skills and past successes best match the role. Finally, make sure you prepare answers to some of the most common questions interviewers regularly ask.

2. Think of your tech

With video interviews, the main issues you might have to deal with will be technical. So, before you’re due to start, make sure to do a tech test: do you have stable internet connection? Are your microphone and camera working? We normally advise to use a laptop or desktop computer; however, if your phone has the capacity to handle a long video chat, you may be okay to use it.

3. No distractions, please

Now that your tech is good to go, it’s time to think about your environment. Avoid doing video interviews at coffee shops, libraries and other public places, where you’ll be bombarded with distracting noises and movement – instead, stay at home and choose a quiet, well-lit room with enough space to set up your equipment. If you live with family or friends, make sure they know your interview is taking place so they can remember to keep noise levels to a minimum.

4. First impressions matter

While you may not be meeting the interviewer in person, your appearance and the way you present yourself will still be taken into consideration. So, when you’re setting up and getting ready, try to imagine you’re doing a face-to-face interview and pick your clothes accordingly. You should also pay attention to your background, and try to keep it as mess-free as possible.

Talent’s tips in brief:

  • Prepare just as you would for a face-to-face interview.
  • Find a silent, well-lit place, free from distractions.
  • Make sure you have a stable internet connection.
  • Check that your microphone is working.
  • Test your camera.
  • Dress professionally and choose a suitable background.
  • Nod, smile, and speak clearly.
  • Finally – be confident!

If you think you’re ready to put your video interview skills to the test, check out what jobs we have available here.

How to build your personal brand

How to build your personal brand

Posted November 16, 2023

It’s a noisy world out there, and these days, it’s not enough to just let your work speak for itself.

Building your personal brand is about telling people who you are, and demonstrating how you could be of value to them. In the simplest terms your personal brand is your reputation, which follows you around whether you like it or not. So, you may as well take control of it and leverage it to make connections, grow your business, and land your dream job.

1. Figure out what you’re all about

You may have many jobs over your lifetime, but your personal brand is something you’ll take with you over the course of your career so it’s worth investing time and energy into it. Before you can sell yourself to the world, you need to know who you are, what you want to be known for, and where you want to go. What are your values and interests? What motivates you? What’s the most exciting part of your job and what are the changes you want to make happen in your industry? Take stock of your set of skills and talents and experiences that are unique to you. If you were competing for a spot in the rocket ship leaving Earth to start a new civilisation, what would you write on your application form?

Then start thinking about where you want to be a year from now. How about in 5, 10 years, and beyond? Once you’ve established your short and long term goals, you’ll have a better idea of the kind of people you’d like to start noticing you, they’re your target audience.

Answers to all of these questions will help you formulate a one-line vision statement for your personal brand that really feels authentic to you, not just something you think you’re meant to say.

“My number one tip is to always be honest and true to who you are,” says Rosie Willson, our CRM Consultant. “Pretending to be someone or something you aren’t will only end in tears.”

2. Build your brand

In the good old days, if someone wanted to stalk you, they’d need several fake moustaches, a big pair of binoculars and a leafy bush to hide behind, but today all it takes is a simple Google search. In most cases, they’ll start with your LinkedIn profile, and this is your first chance to impress.

Your online presence is an extension of yourself, so inject a bit of your personality in there. For Rosie, “Personal qualities I look for in a candidate include their humour, an inquisitive nature and their motivations to grow and develop in a role.”
In the one-line bio, don’t just write “Developer at Boring Company”, use a full sentence to show the world that you love what you do, and that you’re damn good at it. Need some inspo? Check out the bios of LinkedIn’s Top Ten Voices In Tech.

People looking at your profile don’t just want to read your resume, they want to get a sense of who you are as a person to see if you’re a good cultural fit for their company. “The more you tell me about yourself, the more you stand out and will spring to mind when new roles come up,” says Scarlett Cooke, Talent Sydney Account Manager. Your work history shouldn’t read like a resume. People are naturally drawn to narratives, so tell a compelling personal story that includes your interests, motivations, key milestones in your career and your outlook for the future. In addition, she advises your photo should be professional and your ‘experience’ section should be up to date and aligned to your CV.

Of course, as much as recruiters want to get the full picture of you as a professional, there is such a thing as TMI – too much information. “I would also strongly recommend keeping your personal social media on the highest privacy settings possible!” Scarlett adds.

After all, a prospective employer could really do without the mental image of you dressed as Sexy Shrek from that Halloween party in 2008.

3. Create content

You can use the words “motivated” and “passionate” all you like, but the best way to prove that you’re the real deal is simple: Show us what you can do. You’ve identified your area of specialisation, so you can start by sharing articles related to that topic and commenting on posts with your insights. You’ve told us all about your skillset, so build a beautiful website for yourself that showcases those strengths. But please, make sure it works.

Blog about industry topics that combine your experience, interests and expertise. Don’t be afraid to get niche, as you can position yourself as a thought leader in that particular space. You could write articles on platforms like Medium and also consider sending out a regular email newsletter that people can sign up to. You don’t have to restrict yourself to blog posts, think about other media too. Consider articles, white papers, speeches, video series, podcasts, animated infographics, flash games, the choices are endless!

4. Connect with others

If you’re an introvert, “networking” might be a phrase that makes you feel like throwing up a little bit in your mouth, but at the end of the day, it’s just about making genuine connections and getting to know the people in your community. You might not always love talking about yourself, but that’s just a part of what personal branding is about. Instead seek out the people whose work you admire, and tell them how much you appreciate their work. Share articles that others have written, and soon others will do the same for you.

If you’re a developer, another tip is to frequently add to GitHub, Stack Overflow, or if you’re a Salesforce developer, continue to earn badges on Trailhead. It proves that you care about what you do and gives you a chance to show off your ability and interact with your peers.

Being social is also about going out and doing stuff in real life. Yep, people still do that, shocking isn’t it? If you live in a city, there are events, training sessions, expos and conferences happening pretty much every day of the week, so you’ve got no excuse.

“I would recommend signing up for Meetup as this is a great way to connect with the tech community and stay up to date with new trends,” says Scarlett. Or just Google tech events + your city and see what turns up. As well as proving that you’re constantly learning and adding to your knowledge, attending an event is bound to give you an idea for something to write about on your blog. Bonus!

5. Living your brand

Building your personal brand is about discovering and then showcasing the best version of yourself. It’s not just about self-promotion, it’s about conducting yourself in a way that other people are compelled to be your cheerleaders. Going above and beyond in your work and helping out colleagues means you’ll be more likely to get LinkedIn recommendations and prove that you are as good as you say.

Employers do look for volunteer work or community involvement, as well as extra-curricular activities around social responsibility. You really can’t fake this stuff, so if you’re not doing it already, get out there and use your skills and privilege to make the world a better place.

Finally, this process might have helped you identify some of your personal shortfalls and flaws, so use this opportunity to work on yourself. Become the kind of person that you’d want on your team, and you’ll be much happier for it.

If you think your personal brand has what it takes to stand out from the rest, browse the opportunities we have available and get applying!

The green skills gap: An introduction to the growing field of green technology

The green skills gap: An introduction to the growing field of green technology

Posted October 24, 2023

What are green skills and how do they fit into the growing green technology landscape? We break down the basics. From solar to smart grids, here’s a quick snapshot of what you need to know about green tech and the growing green jobs market.

Technologies shaping the green energy sector

The green skills shortage is a global phenomenon. The UK currently faces a green energy skill gap of over 200,000 workers — a number that is likely to increase as the UK pursues 100% renewable energy by 2035. Sharing in the goal of 100% renewable energy is New Zealand, an objective set by the current Labour Party. In this pursuit, expertise in various areas is required, including solar power, wind power, energy storage, smart grids and electric vehicles.

Solar power

Solar power — a clean and renewable energy source — has a number of benefits, including its low environmental impact, scalability and potential to provide reliable power even during periods of peak demand. This green technology is enabled by four key professional categories: manufacturing, system design, project development, and installation and maintenance, which collectively support its implementation and ongoing operation. Across all professional categories, 700,000 new solar power jobs were created in 2022 alone. The following skillsets are sought after within each category:

  • Manufacturing: Computer Numerical Control (CNC) Operators, Process Control Technicians and Instrumentation & Electronics Technicians.
  • System design: Structural and Power Systems Engineers, Solar Energy Systems Designers and Software Engineers.
  • Project development: Solar Marketing Specialists, Solar Utility Procurement Specialists and Building Inspectors.
  • Installation & maintenance: HVAC technicians, Solar Service Technicians and Solar Installations Contractors.

Wind power

Wind power is actively shaping the green energy sector. To implement and operate wind power energy sources, there is currently a rising demand for those with expertise in data analytics, electrical systems, aerodynamics and simulation, among others. Within the five areas responsible for the operation and maintenance of wind power — engineering, design, construction, operation and maintenance — approximately half a million skilled workers will be needed in construction and maintenance alone by 2026.

Energy storage

Energy storage ensures energy sources are accessible when they are most needed. This is particularly important for renewables like solar and wind, which may not be consistently available.

There are several energy storage technologies, each possessing unique strengths and weaknesses: These include batteries, pumped hydro, and compressed air energy storage. Energy storage plays a transformative role in enhancing the reliability and affordability of renewable energy sources while reducing our dependence on fossil fuels.

Energy storage companies are looking for those who are competent in flywheels, pumped hydro, compressed air, and thermal storage, among others. The specific technical competencies required depend on the nature of the role — other relevant energy storage technological skills include software development, data analysis, modelling and simulation.

Smart grids

Smart grids are modern power grids that use digital technology to improve efficiency, reliability, and sustainability. Smart grids make use of various technologies including sensors, communication networks, and advanced control systems. These technologies enable utility companies to monitor and control the grid in real time, resulting in improved efficiency and reliability. Furthermore, smart grids play a vital role in integrating intermittent renewable energy sources, such as solar and wind power, into the existing power infrastructure.

There are various skills that are required of the engineers who work on smart grids: Linux, MATLAB programming, electric utility analysis, GIS, outage management, demand response and infrastructure management. The demand for such skills is projected to increase significantly as the global smart grid market is set to reach USD $207.82 billion by 2030, compared to 2022’s value of USD $50 billion.

Electric Vehicles (EVs)

With a projected UK skill shortage reaching the tens of thousands, Electric vehicles (EVs) are powered by electricity instead of gasoline or diesel —  considered a clean and efficient way to travel.

EVs have a number of benefits, including their lowered emissions, quiet operation and potential to reduce fuel costs. As technology continues to improve, EVs are becoming more affordable and accessible. In-demand EV-related technological competencies include software engineering, control system development, sensing and actuation technology, and vehicles & systems integration; the demand for these skills — and other associated EV competencies — is projected to grow 230% over the next five years.

A look into global demand

The global demand for workers in the green energy sector is steadily rising, as evidenced by a 29% higher median hiring rate compared to the 2023 workforce average. This trend shows no sign of slowing down – the number of green energy jobs is expected to increase by around 12 million by 2030. As only one in eight workers have the necessary skills to meet the rising green energy demand, employers are needing to ensure they stand out in today’s competitive tech marketplace to attract the best.

Whether you’re working in solar, wind, electric vehicles, or anything in between, at Talent, we bring together experts in tech, transformation and beyond. Learn more about our Green Tech specialisation here and our current job opportunities here.