Graduate blog

Share This

Applying for and getting the job

Category: R&D Global Development | 6 comments

I’m not sure exactly what got me the job as a graduate. I remember reading the job add thinking that I matched the requirements, and I guess that’s the first thing that needs to be in place. There are some quite concrete requirements that the initial selection is based on. I don’t know much more about the details of them now than I did when I applied. I know that Novo Nordisk is looking for candidates that are among the best in their class. But I also know that you don’t have to be a straight a student to get the job. What’s more important is your inter-social skills, that you have a positive attitude, that collaboration and being a team player comes natural to you, and that you have international experience. I think at least half of the graduates that they were hired last year, origin from another country than Denmark. I am a native Dane myself, and my international experience comes from studying abroad twice during my studies at the university. I spent half a year near Toronto and another half a year in Berlin. Another thing that counted in my favor was the fact that I had been working both as a student assistant as well as full-time at the University of Copenhagen within the skill area that I was applying for. Relevant working experience is often held in great esteem. The same was the case here.

I realize that the deadline for applying for a graduate position is approaching and that many of you reading these blog post are perhaps struggling with your application these days. I would love to give you tips and tricks for your writing, but I don’t have any  special formulation or subject that is a must to include in your application. I believe in honesty and authenticity, and my best advice to you is to write about your professional as well as personal strengths in a trustworthy way with focus on the aspects of your profile that make you the right persons for the position you are applying for. In addition to that I think that simple things that a neat layout of your cover letter and curriculum vitae and an application written in a flawless, flowing and non-pretentious style are important. It expresses structure and propriety.

What I liked about the recruitment process for a Novo Nordisk graduate position was the professionalism and seriousness together with the great energy that filled the two days of the “bootcamp”. I think I touched upon this in my first blog post. The energy and professionalism has continued to be a striking part of my experiences at Novo Nordisk. It’s evident that people here really like there jobs and share a believe in working to strengthen the company and improve its products. Today we received approval of a product within the project that I am currently working on. This was celebrated with cakes and a motivating speech from the woman in charge, and I will end this post with a picture from that event.


VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
(Rated by 4 people. Average 5.0 of 5)
Applying for and getting the job, 5.0 out of 5 based on 4 ratings

6 Comments to Applying for and getting the job

  1. Posted January 23, 2013 at 1:52 am | Permalink
    Michael says:

    Dear Oluf,
    I did not do a masters but recently graduated with a life sciences PhD. Do you know of any people that were accepted to the graduate program who had a PhD?
    Best regards,

  2. Posted January 31, 2013 at 8:07 pm | Permalink
    Oluf Højbjerg says:

    Dear Michael,

    I know that there have been hired candidates with a PhD in medicine for the medical graduate programme.
    But it’s a slightly different programme, and their recruitment runs different from ours.
    A friend of mine with a PhD was on the other hand turned down when applying for a graduate position in Novo Nordisk due to “over-qualification”.
    I think my best advice to you would be to apply directly for an open position at Novo Nordisk within a field of yoyr interest, especially since Global Development are not hiring for the graduate programme this year, and it sounds to me like your profile would be within that branche of the graduate programmes.
    I know that Novo Nordisk in general holds PhD candidates in great esteem.
    You can get an overview of available jobs her:

    I hope that answers your question. Please get back to me if you further questions to ask.

    Best regards,


  3. Posted February 4, 2013 at 2:06 pm | Permalink
    Olga says:

    Dear Oluf,

    thanks for a fresh look from the inside and your helpful experiences.

    I am struggling with one thing which you also mentioned: relevant working experience. Was yours precisely less than 1 year? Is it indeed a strict requirement? I can’t believe it that if I have more than I year of relevant international experience, it’ll be considered as drawback of mine and thus my application will be dismissed…seems a bit illogical to me, to be honest. What do you think?

    Many thanks in advance,


  4. Posted February 15, 2013 at 11:42 am | Permalink
    Michael Sameeh says:

    Dear Oluf,
    Thanks for making me even more excited about this program. I had applied before i read your precious post.
    I think that am lucky enough that i considered most of the tips that were included with the exception of hammering on the international mindset that i am sure that i have.
    i highlighted on it indirectly by uploading samples of my work of a proposed presidential campaign of Donald trump in the last US elections..
    Thanks again, looking forward to your tips for the phone interview, hopefully i could have one in the near future.

    Warm Regards,

  5. Posted February 16, 2013 at 7:53 pm | Permalink
    Gonul says:

    Hey Oluf,
    I am really getting excited , when i read some exciting experiences from the person works in Novo Nordisk)) I applied from Turkey, and waiting the good news;))
    Wish me luck, cause i have everything Novo Nordisk wants but just need luck ;))
    Best Regards,

  6. Posted August 21, 2013 at 5:48 am | Permalink
    Oluf says:

    Dear Olga,

    Sorry for not getting back to you before now. For some unknown reason I was not notified of your blog commment until now. Please let me know if you still have any question at this point.

    Br. Oluf