The inside scoop with Emma

Sometimes when reading this blog you may forget that here at Neil’s Recruitment Company we don’t just produce wonderful content, incredible resource guides and offer free training. We also recruit. The clue’s in the title.

With that in mind we wanted to hear from the front line about the actual nuts and bolts of securing an interview and getting the job. So Niklas and I went along to Group M to meet Emma who works in talent acquisition or in other words she is their in-house recruiter.

Emma Telling

I wanted to know everything so Emma took us through each stage of their recruitment process and how to stand-out along way.


This is digital media and the first thing they are looking at is always a strong grasp of numbers. You need to be able to look at data, read, manage and process it. With this in mind they are looking for degrees in subjects like Maths, Economics, Business, Finance, Physics. It’s not impossible without these degrees but you will get a head start with one of these backing you up.

Other things looked for will be a sandwich course in industry or some work experience because then they know you can operate comfortably within a company and have some knowledge of what it will be like.

On your CV say why you want to work in digital media and where you want to be in 5 years time. They need to see passion and progression, not that you can work well in a team but also on your own.

Tip to stand out: Include that you have attended Neil’s Recruitment Company’s free training sessions. We are hearing this more and more and Emma mentioned it as something she looks out for.


They like the look of your CV, next up is a telephone conversation. This is really all about seeing whether you can communicate. Seem bright, alert and friendly and make sure you have done some preparation.

You may be asked what a media agency does (you can find this out by reading my blogs about Carat (CAREFUL this one is media not specifically digital media) and MoneySupermarket). You might be asked what parts of your degree you enjoyed the most. Be prepared to talk about these.

Assessment day

So they like the look of your CV and they like what you do on the dog and bone. At this stage you will be invited in for an assessment day.

You will be asked to complete a maths test (it’s not all bad because Emma always provides Krispy Kremes as a reward on completion) and you will be asked to prepare a presentation. You will also be given a brand and asked to come up with the first stages of a campaign. Here you are going to need to identify the target demographic and decide what channels to use to reach them. Remember this is digital media so think digital.

Tip to stand out: At a recent assessment day a candidate mentioned that he had been to a local shop that didn’t have an online presence so had set them up with a website, installed GA and drove traffic there. It is this type of thing that will give you the edge.


You’ve done it. You’e pulled the wool over their eyes and now you’re walking into lion’s den. First thing’s first. What to wear? Although it’s not the uniform of the digital media employee, Emma suggests a full suit and tie. They want to know that if necessary you can smarten up and be presentable. This does get picked up on in feedback, for example: “this kid scrubs up gooood”.

In the interview be prepared to give examples of when you have had to negotiate something, do in-depth research, when you’ve worked in a team and any problem solving you have done.

At this stage it is important to look at the job specification. You are now interviewing for a specific role and you need to prove you can fill it.

Find out everything you can about the company and importantly the company’s competitors. If you really want to impress (why not ey?) find out about the campaigns the company and its competitors are running.


Follow these easy steps and you’ll have a job in no time. Well perhaps that’s not quite true but they will certainly stand you in good stead. Remember it’s all good experience and might take you a few tries but in the meantime be proactive and be prepared. Now get out there soldier and start living!