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Careers Education & Placement Centre. Big Five Recruitment Exercise Preparation Written Application Date: 15 September, 2000 (Friday) Time: 5:30pm - 7:00pm Venue : T6, Meng Wah Complex. Careers Education & Placement Centre Email: Rachel Hong Senior Manager

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Careers Education & Placement Centre

Big Five Recruitment Exercise Preparation

Written Application

Date: 15 September, 2000 (Friday)

Time: 5:30pm - 7:00pm

Venue : T6, Meng Wah Complex

Careers Education & Placement CentreEmail:

Rachel Hong

Senior Manager

(Employer Relations)


Tel: 2859 2314

Application Deadline

CompanyTentative Closing Date




Ernst & Young3/10

Arthur Andersen9/10

You have 2 weeks to prepare your first application for PWC.

How many applications did they get (1999)?

Company Applications First%Job% Received Shortlist Offer

Ernst & Young193132683820




Arthur Andersen1753520137

How many applications did they get (2000)?

Company Applications First%Job% Received Shortlist Offer

Ernst & Young258162635923




Arthur Andersen14971482215

How long do they spend on each application?

For most of the companies,

less than

one minute

per application.

Application Letter

Make employers want to meet you!

  • where did you learn about this position

  • your qualification, background, special strengths

  • what can you do for the employer

  • what attract you to the occupation and the employer

  • when are you available for interview

Job content skills - audit

Primary aspects of work

  • Calculating financial and other commercial figurework

  • Checking that people are following laws or regulations

  • Using statistical methods to obtain, interpret and present information

Job content skills - audit... (cont’d)

Secondary aspects of work

  • Presenting ideas and information in writing

  • Understanding how businesses and organisation work

  • Assessing the financial value of goods, buildings or services

  • work requiring accuracy and attention to detail

Job content skills - audit...(cont’d)

Other aspects of work

  • Being interested in aspects of law (e.g. business, personal, criminal)

  • Dealing with paper work such as letters, forms, and records

  • Organising and storing information

  • Interviewing people

  • Travelling around locally from place to place

  • Providing advice

Personal qualities & skills - audit

  • highly numerate

  • capable of interpreting complicated accounts

  • an enquiring mind

  • a good eye for detail

  • be accurate

  • be methodical in their work

  • an ability to communicate effectively and explain results clearly and concisely

  • good report writing skills

Why are you interested in the company and the job??


  • Recruitment/career talk

  • career booklet

  • company file/newspaper cutting file

  • world wide web (e.g. South China Morning Post Archive)

  • alumni contact/friends

  • CEPC homepage

Application Letter


I.follow the ‘4S Rule’

- short

- simple

- succinct

- specific

II.include ‘competency statements’

- should say what the candidate can DO

- should make it clear what results they have achieved

Samples from last year’s successful audit letters



  • Personal particulars

  • Summary statement

  • Career objective

  • Schools attended

  • Qualification and examination result

  • Thesis/project

  • Awards received

  • Working experience

  • Extra-curricular activities

  • Skills

  • Hobbies

  • Reference


Personal Particulars

  • Include only relevant information

    - name

    - telephone number

    - address

    - e-mail address

  • Information on your height, weight, place of birth, gender, marital status etc are not needed.

  • Don’t take up too much space with this section


Summary Statement

A final year student in The University of Hong Kong, with major in Finance and minor in Accounting. Dynamic, hard-working and self-motivated with outgoing personality. Enjoy travelling and meeting people. Aspire to responsible positions in auditing work.


Career Objective

An audit trainee position in a well established auditing firm where I can use my background in auditing and accounting to perform auditing work.


Work Experience

  • Start with your most recent or most relevant experience,

  • Give the company name, period of employment and job title,

  • Describe your duties and responsibilities,

  • Show results.

Resume - example

Summer Work Experience

Hong Kong Government, Industry Department Survey Officer

- Interviewed Senior Manager in 20 foreign companies and

collected sensitive information for a survey of overseas

investments in Hong Kong.


Extra-Curricular Activities

  • Include student activities, committees, sports or responsible positions that you have held,

  • Include related achievements,

  • Include title, period, statement of responsibilities, and statement of achievement as with “Work Experience”.

Resume - example

Extra-Curricular Activities

Member of the Debating Team, Swire Hall HKU, 98-00

  • Leader of the Team in the 2nd year. Arranged competitions, selected competitors, trained new debators, and participated in debate.



  • Include other qualifications that are relevant to the company

    e.g. language, computer and job content skills

Resume - example

Skills (cont’d)

Language -

Communicative Putonghua, completed level 3, Advanced Putonghua, Language Centre, HKU

Computer language -

Basic, Pascal, Fortran

Software -

Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel

Ability to spot inconsistency -

Spotted inconsistency in statistics of a 200 pages financial report of XXX company while I was the Summer Helper in August 2000


Hobbies and Interest

  • Useful if they are relevant to your career objective.

  • Avoid being too general such as “reading” or “sports”,

  • Be specific and list achievement, if any

    e.g. reading detective stories, war game strategies, literature classics etc.,

    bird-watching and keeping log book of species seen,


Professional Membership

  • If it is relevant to your career objective, put it down


    Student Member of

  • the Hong Kong Society of Accountants,

  • the Hong Kong Institute of Marketing (marketing posts).


Expected Salary

  • Leave it out unless it is asked for.

  • Do some research and find our what news recruits are paid in that industry.

  • state a range

    ?? HK$ 10,000 - HK$20,000

    HK$ 8,000 - HK$12,000

The DOs

  • write the letter and resume yourself

  • make it error free

  • make it look good

  • stress your accomplishments

  • be brief and specific

  • be honest

  • keep it lively - use action words (e.g. organised, participated, handled..etc)

  • address to the right person

The DON’Ts

  • Incomplete Information

  • Poor layout

  • Too fancy/complicated

  • Incorrect data (e.g. date of birth, year of graduation)

  • Left out signature

Other Resources

  • Getting the job you really want

  • Write, giving full details (video)

  • The Miracle Resume (video)

  • CDT - Career Development Track

  • English Centre - Self Access

  • More .......

    Careers Library, 3/F, Meng Wah Complex

These slides are available at the CEPC homepage


Click the key Lecture Notes




  • Time allowed: 20 minutes

  • Answer with short phrases or bullet points

  • You may refer to your notes

Quiz Results

  • Results will be ready by 19 Sept (Tue) 2:00 p.m. Pick up your answer sheet from the Careers Centre.

  • Students who have passed the quiz will be invited to attend Resume Review Session to be held on 22 Sept (Fri) 6:30pm - 7:30pm and these students will have to submit their application letter to the CePc by 20 Sept (Wed) 2:00 p.m.

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