Welcome to PsychAssist, within this post we will explore the 4 stages you will experiance on the journey to that all important Assistant Psychologist job; from sending the application, to your first day on the job (I feel like a proud parent watching their child on their first day of school!).
Ok so hopefully if you are reading this then, you have either been successful in obtaining that Assistant Psychologist post OR, you’re a Psych Grad that is desperate in getting that Assistant Psychologist post (if you are the latter, then check out the 5 Tips on Getting that Assistant Psychologist Job to give yourself the edge over the AP competition).
Not ready for an Assistant Psychologist job? No problem check out the 6 Jobs for A Psychology Graduate straight out of university? to help you get your toe in the door. Or, if your confused on what an Assistant Psychologist actually does then check out the previous post So What do Assistant Psychologists Actually Do?
From Application to Interview
In one of my previous posts (5 Tips on Getting that Assistant Psychologist Job), I briefly spoke about the length of time it takes from application deadline to being in front of the panel. This is on average between 3-12 weeks with most adverts failing to mention when they would ideally like to hold the interviews. I’ll give you an example: When I applied for my AP role, I applied in June and didn’t hear anything back until September (to the point where I forgot that I had even applied for the post!). Now some services are really good and efficient in processing their applications; however, if you have over 100 applicants, it’s going to take a little while to sift through them all (especially if its only one or two people doing this which has happened to me!). The message here is once you’ve applied FORGET ABOUT IT!!! You probably won’t hear anything back for a while.
Ok so if your one of the LUCKY few that has been shortlisted for interview then you will probably have just finished jumping up and down in excitement to realise “Oh crap I need to prepare!”. Don’t panic, you usually have a few weeks for this (look out for the common AP interview themes coming soon to PsychAssist!). I remember I was told that I was invited to interview for my post at the start of September and didn’t interview till around the 20th which gave me around 20 days to prepare. Don’t panic! (Don’t try to cram lots of information in if this is your first interview). The best interview advice I EVER received was “you’ve made it past the application stage, that means they think your competent enough for the role, now they just want to know if you can fit in with the team”; bottom line is you’ve done the hard part, now just show them how AMAZING you are!
Wow, ok that’s a little dramatic but you understand what I mean! Thankfully most psychology jobs don’t keep you in suspense for long periods of time. Actually, every interview I’ve ever had or been on the panel for have called the candidates back either the same day or early the next morning. Oh except for my post! I remember receiving a phone call the next day from one of the interviewers saying don’t worry we just need to finalize the paperwork before we make a decision on Monday but “DON’T WORRY” (which of course in my head meant worry the whole weekend) thankfully it all worked out well after that.
Offer Acceptance to first day
Woohooo!! You’ve got your dream job and you’re on your way up the career ladder! Well done! NOW WHAT?
So you’ve accepted the offer and you’re still pinching yourself in disbelief, however, the work has just started! What usually happens now is, you wait for a representative of HR to contact yourself so you can provide them with all the relevant paperwork (it’s usually a lot easier to go see them in person rather than doing this over email as I’ve been burnt before!). The paperwork usually includes DBS check application forms, contact details and health details and if you’re lucky they’ll take your picture for your very own ID badge! They will also ask your references to fill out a form telling your new employers how wonderful you are and how you’re never late for anything (when we all know that’s a lie!!)
Watch out though as the time scale from accepting your offer to actually being in post is usually around the 3 month mark unless your employer can somehow speed this process along in special circumstances ( I remember my support worker post took 7 months to start due HR “losing” my forms on 3 separate occasions!). Nevertheless, this is a very strange time for most. It’s almost as if you’re in limbo until you get that all important start date. Once this has happened, its smooth sailings!
Thank you for reading this post and hopefully you now know what to expect once you’ve accepted your AP post.
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