I spoke to Fiona Macintyre, Marketing Manager at MindGenius Ltd. today about the company’s unique selling points and how to make a lasting impression during the recruitment process. Based in East Kilbride, MindGenius offers innovative solutions to businesses, educators, and to students by tackling age-old productivity challenges.
Fiona explained that at MindGenius the team recognises a couple of important facts about projects: “some projects fail” and “technology is always moving forward”. Where other project management software allows users access to a tool to help move a project forward, MindGenius looks at the whole process and supports businesses to define requirements, agree scope, and set realistic objectives. This business objective means MindGenius is consistently able to adapt to how the sector is changing, offering a solution before their clients find a problem and therefore helping them to save time, money, and the client’s reputation.
To do this, MindGenius developed two distinctive pieces of project management software, one desktop based for individual use and a collaborative product which allows teams to manage their project together. With two unique products comes two marketing strategies. Our current ScotGrads on placement own the marketing for each of these products, making strategic decisions with support from their wider team.
Fiona was keen to stress the importance of ideas. For graduates interested in working for the company in the future or similar small and medium sized businesses, Fiona recommends getting your ideas across early, preferably in the application form. Ask yourself questions like what technology news have I read recently which could influence how this product is perceived in the market, what are the key drivers for the success of the company, and what marketing techniques have I previously had success with and why?
At ScotGrad, you have to have a degree to apply, so everyone enters on a level playing field in terms of qualifications, so how can you stand out from the rest of the applicants? Fiona advises:
- Demonstrate that you understand the practical applications of what the company does, in this case how the software can be used by customers
- Offer your ideas (if the company likes them and they employ you, you’ll get the opportunity to work on these as an employee)
- Allow your personality to come through at interview and don’t stick to what you think the panel wants to hear; remember that you have interesting ideas and experiences to share
Fiona said “don’t be afraid to challenge norms”. At interview, the CEO and Head of Department will be on the panel but Fiona encourages “titles don’t mean anything; you will be taken seriously”. She discussed tips for the interview and how to make a positive impression. She looks for a “conversation which flows, not one or two word answers […] a personality which fits in with the team, and someone who is not afraid to elaborate on ideas.”
Fiona has been responsible for her fair share of interviews, and she let us know that the most impressive responses include candidates who explore how they imagine the MindGenius tool being used in their own context, for example, how it could have been utilised to enhance their own recent study experience. Exploring the real-world applications for what the company does using your academic understanding and experience is a sure-fire way to leave a lasting impression. You’re demonstrating commercial understanding; a skill we’re sure you’ve heard your university’s Careers Team encourage you to develop.
The resounding message from chatting with Fiona is “don’t be afraid”. This is an important message; your influence has the potential to make a significant impact on outcomes for the business! Use the recruitment process as an opportunity to position yourself as a knowledgeable professional who is confident their ideas can make a difference.
We hope our Technology month has inspired you to think about working in the sector!