How to Apply Successfully for the Shell Programme for Students and Graduates

Tips to apply successfully

The Yale Book of Quotations attributes the quote "If you think education is expensive, try ignorance" to the former president of Harvard University Derek Bok, but it includes another note stating that the quote appeared in the Washington Post on October 6, 1975.

In this article, we bear this in mind as we share tips on how to ensure successful application for the Shell Graduate Programme for Students and Graduates (for details on this scholarship see here if you're an international student, or here if you're a Nigerian student).

Just as international students from developing countries try their best to study abroad to obtain high quality education, so also it is most wise to obtain tips beforehand for the successful outcome of any life's endeavour including applying for the Shell Graduate Programme for Students and Graduates. Learn more about the various steps and processes involved when applying for position at Shell, and discover some top tips to help you succeed.

NOTE: (The new recruitment process explained below comes into effect from April 01, 2017. If you are already at a certain stage in the graduate recruitment process, the process explained below does not apply to you.)

Make the most of your CV

Your CV is a key step in any application process. It is the platform to present yourself and demonstrate your achievements. Here are a few handy tips to help you present yourself in the best possible way:
  • Make sure your CV is up to date
  • Try to restrict it to two pages and keep the layout simple
  • Use headings like 'Education' and 'Career History' to highlight different sections
  • Don’t just make general statements about yourself – support them with evidence. For example, explain what you have done that illustrates the qualities you have
  • Try to link your skills and experience to the requirements of the role you’re applying for
  • Make sure you have an updated LinkedIn profile to make filling the application form faster
Personal details: Your full name, address, email address and phone number are most important. You’ll also want to make sure the full name you provide is the same full name written in other official documents.

Educational details: List these in reverse chronological order, with your most recent education first. Include the name of the institutions, the dates you were enrolled, and the qualifications you obtained or will obtain when you graduate. You may want to list the relevant modules, the projects and dissertations you have delivered, the grades you have achieved, and professional skills you have developed.

Career history and professional experience: Whether they’re paid, voluntary or shadowing, all experiences count! Present these in reverse chronological order with dates to show how long you remained in a particular role. Mention what you achieved and the skills you developed.

Achievements and outside interests: Include this information to show that you’re a rounded person with a balanced approach to life. Focus on recent examples, describing what you contributed and learned, and how you did this.

Stage 1: Online assessments

For the initial online assessments, note the following:
  1. Although you’re given 10 days to complete the assessments, we encourage you to complete them as promptly as you can, preferably within 5 days
  2. Before getting started, check to make sure you are using one of the following supported Internet browsers:
    • Internet Explorer 9+, latest version of Firefox, Chrome and Edge on Windows 7+
    • Latest version of Safari on Mac OS
    • Latest version of Safari on iOS (10" iPad recommended)
    • Latest version of Chrome on Android (~10" device recommended).
    • Click here for more information on the technical requirements for ensuring an optimal experience during the online assessments.
  3. Make sure you are in the right frame of mind to take the test (motivated, focused, not tired or stressed)
  4. It is recommended that you take this assessment on a large screen tablet, desktop or laptop
  5. If English isn’t your first language you may want to have a search engine on quick tab available
  6. Ensure you choose a quiet place and time to take the assessments
  7. Ensure you read the questions properly
  8. Don’t spend too much time on one question. You can always go back!

Part A: Cognitive test

Bear these in mind:
  • Keep an eye on the timer
  • A calculator is allowed and is recommended
  • For the numerical/ quantitative test, you will probably want to use a pen, paper and a calculator as you will be required to make calculations (e.g. multiplications, percentages, ratios, etc.)

Part B: Working styles assessment

Bear these in mind:
  • Ensure you have researched Shell’s values
  • Before starting, take some time to consider examples of how you’ve worked successfully in the past
  • Don’t try to second-guess what Shell is looking for. Above all, we want you to have integrity; be authentic and confident of your opinions. We celebrate diversity and uniqueness at Shell and encourage you to be yourself

Part C: On-demand Video Interview

Bear these in mind:
  • Choose somewhere quiet with a good internet connection
  • Test your webcam and microphone
    Make sure the area is well-lit and you can clearly be seen
  • Preferred browsers are Chrome, Firefox or Safari (latest version). Click here for more information on the system and internet speed requirements
  • Reflect on why you’re applying and what your standout experiences are. Be ready to talk about these in an engaging way

Stage 2: Final Assessment

For the final assessment, note the following:
  1. Test your system one day before the actual interview. You may use the Virtual Interview Lobby for this purpose by entering it before your scheduled interview time
  2. Use the Hirevue Specifications page to ensure your device meets the required specifications for this stage
  3. Take the time to really familiarise yourself with the case study that you will be given prior to the interview (around 90-120 minutes should be sufficient)
  4. Be prepared to deliver a presentation to your assessors and answer any questions they may have
  5. The assessment will last up to 2 hours and 30 minutes. Please plan ahead to ensure you are not disturbed and fully prepared
  6. Don’t worry that the assessment will cover technical knowledge. Focus instead on demonstrating things such as your analytical capacity, drive and enthusiasm, decision-making, and ability to effectively communicate and collaborate at all levels
  7. Do your homework by researching Shell and gaining familiarity with Shell operations, projects, sites and values
  8. Learn about the capacity, achievement and relationship criteria we use to assess candidates
  9. When you’re being interviewed, think carefully about the question. Gather your thoughts before you answer – don’t just dive in
  10. Frame your answer to provide evidence of what the interviewer is looking for. Always focus on what you have done. Always be enthusiastic about your achievements
  11. Keep your answers relevant to the question. Provide sufficient background information to set the scene, but be careful not to wander away from the question
  12. Think of some questions in advance to ask at the end of the interview so you conclude on a positive and inquisitive note
We hope your application is the first success of many to come in your career. Remember that we want you to do well! Good luck.

More Recruitment Tips and Information from Shell

Related: Essential Resources and Must-Know Tips for Students

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