Global Finance

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Calling all master’s students!

Category: Business Processes European Finance Global & European Market Access Global Finance Global Marketing Global Procurement People & Organization Product Supply R&D Global Development R&D Regulatory Affairs | (41) comments

As I wrote in one of my previous graduate blog posts, the graduate programme is not the only option for a life-changing career in Novo Nordisk! If you are studying for a master’s degree and are eager to get started with your career, I can highly recommend applying for one of Novo Nordisk’s more than 100 internships. An internship can be a great way to test your skills and knowledge, but also an opportunity to develop and challenge yourself.

I started my Novo Nordisk career as an intern in the Cities Changing Diabetes team last year, and found that it was a good chance to figure out whether working in Novo Nordisk was something for me. Novo Nordisk takes its interns seriously, and you will have the opportunity to contribute on equal terms, so be ready for a challenge. My six months as an intern was a true learning experience and I had the chance to both use the skills I had achieved from university, but to a large extent also develop new and different capabilities that I could never have gotten from studying. In my case, coming from a public health background, increasing my business understanding was a key learning. I can highly recommend spending six months on an internship at Novo Nordisk, if you want to get a feeling of how it is to work in one of the world’s leading pharmaceutical companies.

However, you only get something out of an internship if you put some effort in it. To get the most out of your stay, here four tips for maximising the benefit of your internship:

  1. Have a clear goal: Before you start your internship it is important that you consider what you actually want to get out of it. What would you like to learn and what are your expectations? It is also a good idea to think about where you can contribute to the company!
  2. Be curious: To learn as much as possible, you have to be motivated and curious of what is going on – ask questions, participate in as many different meetings as possible and reach out to people.
  3. It is okay to make mistakes: An internship is a learning journey and no one expects that you can deliver from day 1, which also means that you have to be open to and ask for feedback during your stay.
  4. Be social: Make sure that you talk to all the interesting people you meet and network as much as possible. Participate whenever there is a social event and see it as an opportunity to get to know people who might be able to help you later on in your career.

Novo Nordisk offers around 100 internship positions in all areas of the business, ranging from marketing, finance & economics, research & development, engineering and IT. The internships vary in length (from 4-6 months) and scope but are all designed to give master’s students a valuable learning experience. The application period for the majority of the fall internship positions is from now to 14 May 2017.

See all the internships positions right here and read more about internships in Novo Nordisk here.

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Graduate Recruitment Centre – my last-minute tips

Category: Global Finance | (0) comments

After weeks of waiting, it’s now the final countdown to the Graduate Recruitment Centre (GRC). You have hopefully already prepared most of what you wish to prepare, but I wanted to share some of my last-minute tips:


  • Prepare to dress to impress
    Think through your outfit in advance to make sure that you have the necessary clothes and avoid ending up with finding stains in the morning of the GRC. The basic rule is that you should look proper and clean. Besides that, I can also warmly recommend to “dress for the job you want”. As some guidance I can share that the general dress code at Novo Nordisk finance departments is business casual. For men, that normally implies suit without a tie. There is more room for different interpretations for females, but I would recommend wearing something that approximately matches the level of the men’s attires. Apart from dressing up at a suitable level, I also think it is very important that you can feel relatively comfortable in what you are wearing. If you succeed in finding an outfit that you feel good in, both in terms of look and comfort, I can assure you that it will increase your confidence during the GRC.
  • Read through the case carefully
    You should have been provided with a pre-read for a case. I recommend you to set aside enough time for reading it through carefully. Personally I would prefer printing it out to be able to use a highlighter as you read, make notes and Google terms you are unfamiliar with.
  • Prepare all your belongings in advance
    Your clothes, shoes, bag, personal belongings etc. Preparing this in advance will make you feel more in control and contribute to a less stressful morning.
  • Clear your schedule the evening before
    You will probably feel that you always could prepare more for the GRC, but my advice is to let it be enough when you reach the evening before. Plan to have the evening off to do whatever you feel like and to think about something else. This will probably make you sleep better compared to stressing about case practice the whole evening. A good night’s sleep will be advantageous for the long GRC day.

During GRC

  • Network and enjoy
    I know it’s not easy, but I would urge you to not be too obsessed about the assessments and seize the opportunity to network with a lot of interesting people while trying to enjoy the day. The Novo Nordisk representatives and other candidates will potentially be your colleagues in a couple of months and then it is a good idea to start connecting already now. Or if it turns out that they won’t be your colleagues, you never know when the connections could be helpful. Besides, if you are enjoying and talking to others it can help you get a mental break from the assessment activities.
  • Smile
    Of course you don’t have to go around and smile all the time, but smiling was actually something that I tried to keep in mind during the GRC. There are many benefits of smiling. From the perspective of likeability, a smiling person often comes across as more friendly and it can also strengthen your team-player aura. But in my view, the most important reason for smiling is that it actually can make you feel better and more relaxed. Normally we smile when we feel happy – but it can also have the reverse effect in that smiling can make us feel happier/calmer. Try it and see whether it works for you.
  • Re-boost with energy
    The GRC day will most likely drain much energy – make sure to fill up with energy by eating and drinking when given the opportunity. It is easy to forget this when you are busy talking or thinking about the next scheduled activity, but it is very important in order to perform at your best ability.
  • Be yourself
    Cliché but not less true. Remember that there is a reason that you were invited to the GRC, and that is because the assessors see potential in you. Don’t try to act the way you think that the assessors want you to act – try not to overthink and just be the fantastic person you are.  

If you are interested in more insights about the GRC, I can recommend you to read my graduate colleague Anne’s post.

I wish you the best of luck and hope to see you around. Feel free to reach out if you have any last-minute questions.

All the best,

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Q&A about the GRC (Graduate Recruitment Centre)

Category: Business Processes European Finance Global & European Market Access Global Finance Global Marketing R&D Global Development R&D Regulatory Affairs | (2) comments

If you are reading this graduate blog post, you were likely invited for the Graduate Recruitment Centre (GRC) in Copenhagen next week – so first of all congratulations! You are in for a fun and intense day filled with group exercises, presentations and networking. This blog post is based on three questions I have received from a candidate participating at the GRC next week, so I hope the rest of you can use these answers as well.


1. How do I prepare my personal compass?

The personal compass is your opportunity to demonstrate to the assessors who you are as a person deep down. Use the presentation of your personal compass to tell the assessors your story and include personal elements you wouldn’t normally put in a CV or application. The aim for this exercise is to get to know you better and learn more about what drives and motivates you. A good advice is to prepare examples from your past experiences that demonstrate how you behave in specific situations. This is also highly relevant in the interviews many of you will have on Monday.


2. How do I make the best impression during the GRC?

It might sound a little lame, but you give the best impression by being yourself! You were chosen for a reason and you were chosen among a lot of talented people, so keep in mind that Novo Nordisk finds YOU interesting. To give the best possible impression, think about why you are interested in the pharmaceutical industry, Novo Nordisk as a company, and the graduate programme you applied for. A big and important part of the GRC is the group exercises where you engage in problem-solving tasks. Here you will be assessed on what role you take in the group, how you contribute to the group dynamics and how good a team-player you are. Don’t hesitate to take initiative, but do it in humble way where you make room for the other group members as well.


3. What was your personal impression of GRC last year? How did you like it? Was it stressful? Were there any social activities etc.?

My impression of the GRC last year was really good! I didn’t quite know what to expect, but was positively surprised by how great and fun the experience was. The schedule was definitely tight (even though we had two days), but I didn’t find it stressful. You will have breaks during the day where there is time to mingle and get to know the other candidates. In regards to social activities there is a dinner at night (which I assume you already know), where you are not assessed and can enjoy the nice atmosphere and food together with some of us current graduates and the assessors.



A picture from the GRC 2016

Let me know if you have comments or more questions and read Mathilde’s GRC tips right here.

I wish you the best of luck – don’t forget that you deserve to be there, so give everything you have, this is the only chance! I can recommend to watch some motivational TedTalks if you need a little extra energy.

I look forward to see you all the GRC!

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Time to apply – who are we looking for?

Category: Business Processes European Finance Global & European Market Access Global Finance Global Marketing Global Procurement Product Supply R&D Chemistry, Manufacturing and Control Graduate Programme R&D Global Development R&D Regulatory Affairs | (30) comments

The deadline for applying for one of the graduate programmes is closing in – you have to send in your application here no later than 12 February 2017. I can imagine that many of you who are considering applying for one of the graduate programmes have thoughts about what type of people Novo Nordisk is looking for. So to clarify this, I will briefly go through the formal qualifications needed to apply, but also the profile and characteristics we hope to find and how you can implement this in your application.

Formal qualifications needed to apply:

  • A Master’s degree from 2016 or 2017 in a relevant field (depending on which programme you apply for, but it could be economics, international business, public health, marketing or similar).
  • Above average academic achievements.
  • A minimum of 6 months of relevant work experience or extracurricular activities.
  • International experience from working, studying or volunteering.
  • Professional fluency in English.
  • The right mind-set with a can-do attitude, high ambitions and excellent interpersonal skills.

The graduate profile we are looking for is characterised by being:

  • Driven – You have to know why you want to work for Novo Nordisk and why you want to be part of the graduate programme.
  • A team player – You should be able to work well in teams and have a humble attitude. Great work is not done by one person alone, but in a team, so we expect you to have a team player mind-set.
  • Proactive – You have to be ready to take initiative and show enthusiasm. We need people who are proactive and not sitting around waiting for someone else to do something.
  • Ready for change – You will be put through three different rotations (read more about the rotations in European Market Access here), so we want someone who can adapt and enjoys change.
  • Result oriented – You have to be able to deliver results and be a high achiever. We are looking for talents who knows what they want and who can deliver great results.

A good way of demonstrating that you possess these characteristics is by giving concrete examples! This applies to both your cover letter, but also in interviews. Examples are great because your previous behaviour in job situations is the best indicator of your future behaviour. The examples shouldn’t be too long, so don’t explain all the details. Instead you should emphasize your role, who was involved and what the results were. And most importantly – what did you learn from it? Remember that the best example may not necessarily be one where you achieved the best result, but where you played a major role and your great competencies were expressed clearly. If you are lucky, it might be the same example.

So, use examples in your online application (including the 1-minute video) to show who you are and why Novo Nordisk should hire you for a graduate position. Read other good tips and tricks for the application process here and here. I wish you the best of luck with your application and feel free to leave a comment or a question below!

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The video.

Category: Business Processes European Finance Global & European Market Access Global Finance Global Marketing Global Procurement International Operations Business International Operations Finance Product Supply R&D Chemistry, Manufacturing and Control Graduate Programme R&D Global Development R&D Regulatory Affairs | (0) comments

Creating a video to accompany your traditional CV would be a great way to stand out from the crowd. So, do not fear the video, the video is your friend!

The video was actually my favourite part of the application. It really gives you a chance to put a human touch on your application package and provide more insights into what you can offer. Yes, the video can be challenging. Depending on the person, one minute can seem like either way too little or way too much time. Here are a few tips to nail your video:

Look good, feel good, play good. The quality of the video isn’t tied to just that one minute in front of the camera – it also matters how you prepare. Clean up and rest up so that you feel at your best! Like I said, your video can show things about yourself that can’t be captured on a cover letter and CV!

Don’t repeat yourself. This helps us make sure you’re not a robot. Try not to repeat exactly what can be read from your cover letter and CV for the whole minute. Sure you can refer to a couple of relevant aspects, but make sure to tie them to yourself as a person. For example, I spoke more about my experience moving from Canada to the US and how it sparked my interest in the way the relationship between the public and private sectors impact patient access to treatment (personal), ultimately pushing me to study Public Policy & Global Health (on CV).

The most repetitive advice of the day – be YOU. It really doesn’t get simpler than this. Make sure to reflect on who you are as a person – what makes you a unique fit for Novo Nordisk, specifically – and show it in your video. A sense of authenticity can definitely be captured over a video, so make sure to show that.

These tips should set you well on your way to making a video that George Lucas would be proud of! If you are still on the stage of your cover letter, check out some advice from Albert here.

The deadline is Feb 12th for most programmes, so get applying!

All the best,


"Don't make the same mistake that I did, Luke."

“Don’t make the same mistake I did, Luke” said the robot.









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Two questions I get asked frequently about Global Finance

Category: Global Finance | (0) comments

When I attend career events at different universities I often get asked similar questions, so I would like to share the answers with all of you here. Although you may have many general/practical ones, which you are welcome to post below, here I will cover two questions on the Global Finance programme specifically.

1. Why did I choose to apply for the Global Finance Graduate programme?
I won’t discuss here all my considerations to apply for Novo Nordisk in general and this programme in specific. However, I do want to highlight two reasons that made me apply: one on company finance and one on the graduate programme. A year ago, I had a difficult time to decide on what it was I actually wanted. With a Bachelor degree specialised in macroeconomics, a switch to finance in my Master’s and working experience in banking, I tried some different things but never got fully convinced. I know that some people find out what they want to do early in their student life and “build” their CV completely towards that goal.

Not me… I knew that banking was not something I particularly enjoyed and started to look into the opportunity of doing finance within a company. Sceptical at first, I imagined all company finance to be rather boring (I was not the biggest fan of financial statement analysis or accounting courses in university). However, it was not until shortly before applying I found out that finance in Novo Nordisk is not in the slightest bit comparable to what you can learn in a course. Working in finance is funny enough not so much about the numbers, it’s about understanding the business. In my first rotation that means: how are our production volumes developing, where should we build a new production line from a cost perspective, can we lower the cost of maintenance if we use big data analysis to project machine failure, can we increase productivity on the work floor by using smart glasses? None of these questions I ever came across in any of my finance courses.

Secondly, and more specific on the graduate programme, I found out that the programme in Novo Nordisk is well established. Although multiple (Danish) companies offer a graduate programme, the one in Novo Nordisk stood out. The main reason being that it is not just something we try to convince students with; it is well-known within the company too. That means that many departments want a graduate, because the bar has been set high by my predecessors. So the graduate programme manager receives many requests from different departments and makes a shortlist of the rotations he thinks a graduate can leave the largest legacy. Not just routine work, but being responsible for some larger project. Out of this shortlist, you can list your preferences and argue why you think this particular rotation is best for your development.

2. What are the differences between the Global Finance and European Finance Graduate programme?
In short, it’s in the name! The Global programme has a global view. For instance, in analysing performance you compare China versus the U.S. In evaluating risk to the business, you consider global operations. In the Global Finance rotations you look at a specific situation and quickly zoom out to the helicopter view and analyse how that affects Novo Nordisk in total. European Finance focuses on a specific region and you will get more in-depth knowledge of that particular market. One last difference: the rotation abroad in Global Finance can be anywhere in the world (with current graduates in Panama, Brazil and the U.S.) whereas with the European programme you will stay inside Europe.

If you want to know more about how that rotation abroad looks like, read Simone’s blog! Remember to apply February the 12th the latest.


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Déjà vu! Giving Your Application a Purpose and a Voice

Category: Business Processes Global Finance Global Marketing Global Procurement International Operations Business International Operations Finance People & Organization Product Supply R&D Global Development R&D Regulatory Affairs Uncategorized | (3) comments

Are you having that weird feeling between excitement and dread that accompanies an application process to that prestigious programme you have been eyeing for some time now? Are you incessantly searching for some quick tips to make your application standout from the rest? Will you be eagerly checking your e-mails from time to time for some communication from the programme post application process – yes, even the “automated system generated” responses? If all these are true to an extent, then I can draw two conclusions – (a) You are super excited about this job; (b) The emotions look all familiar to me in hindsight and I can help you here;

Back in early 2015, I have gone through this gamut of emotions, and I realise today that most of them stemmed from uncertainty and my apprehensions about the role and workplace that I am getting into. Through this post I will share with one of the key ingredients that you could be missing out while you are preparing and working on your CV, Cover Letter and the Video. This ingredient, or its lack thereof, may well impact the quality of all the three (i.e. your CV, Cover Letter and the Video). Remember that these three uploads, will essentially represent you and all that you stand for in the first round. Hence it is important to pay heed to the content of your application. In all these three, you should project what you stand for and why you want to join Novo Nordisk. So how do you bring this element of purpose and give your application a voice?

Your step by step guide to researching a company throughout your application process

Step 1: Know the company and what they are looking for in you?

NN LogosThe best way to convince yourself that you know the company well is to be able to articulate what makes it special compared to its competitors. And yes, a little bit of its history. The good news? Companies will often tell you the answer to this question right on their websites. Do figure out the vision of the company and try answering how your experience could contribute to that effect or where you could possibly fit in the scheme of things. The “About Us” section is good place to start this research. Based on the programme you are applying, you should have a clear train of thought as to how this programme will essentially help you develop and enable you to contribute to the company’s success. And the best place to showcase this understanding of yours is in your cover letter and of course in your short video.

Step 2: Know the company’s sustainability

The new generation workforce is fast starting to realise that a company’s financial performance is not the only thing that will make them attractive but whether a company is viable and sustainable over a longer time frame. And how to know thTBLis? Social consciousness is becoming a critical aspect of today’s organisations, driven by an expectation of environmental responsibility in addition to the financial one. Think triple bottom line; people, planet, profit. For example, Novo Nordisk seeks to broaden the focus on the financial bottom line by its business to include social and environmental responsibilities. What do you think of this? Be prepared.

Step 3: Observe and participate in Community Interactions

In this era of social media, community interaction is an essential source of knowledge. Blog sites as these, Company’s LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter profiles – are just few prominent ones to follow the updates on. This will give you a lot of confidence when you are applying and even during the post application – pre-interview phase.

Step 4: Learn about the Company Culture

Understanding the corporate culture you are getting into will go a long way in identifying yourself with the organisation. As a student we often look at how strong a company’s financials are and how big a brand it has. There can be absolutely no doubt as to how strong the brand of Novo Nordisk is and its strong financials are a testimony to the positive market sentiments around it. But there is one more thing I have realized as an insider that makes Novo Nordisk an organisation with a truly “sustainable competitive advantage”: The Novo Nordisk culture! It mainly manifests itself in the form of an internal governance framework that reflects the ambition of the company, the direction of the company and the values and behaviours that the employees have to exhibit throughout the organisation. We call it the Novo Nordisk Way. It is good to know a little bit about it while you are applying. Graduate blogs and stories are another great way to feel this culture.

Step 5: Read Up on the Field and Competitors

Last but not the least; don’t forget to understand the business the company is in. For example, Novo Nordisk is the world leader in Diabetes Care. When it comes to the competitors, look up competitors by going to the LinkedIn company page and scrolling down to the “Other Companies People Viewed” section. There should be a few competitors there. Do the same thing with the competitors you find until you have a pretty good sense of who the big players in the field are. These are very simple ways to prepare and feel confident about your preparation.

After all this research, you’ll probably be deliberating, “So, what do I do with all this information?” Remember that your objective is to convince that you truly want to be a part of this company. Merely expressing enthusiasm will not be enough and you need to corroborate the same with your knowledge. Once you are aware of these, you will be better poised to give the final touches to your application and your sense of purpose will be stronger than many in the same race.

If you would like to know more about the graduate programmes on offer, please visit the link below: More on the Graduate Programmes

Wish you the very best!

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Notes from a Rotation Abroad: Navigating the Grounds of the Largest Pharmaceutical Investment Project in the World

Category: Global Finance | (0) comments

I have the pleasure to have my graduate colleague Simone Fløcke Lorenzen as a guest blogger for this post:

Horseshoe Bend pic

Hello everyone!

One of the reasons why you might be attracted to learning more about the Graduate Programme is that it offers international work experience through a rotation abroad – and there are all sorts of reasons to be excited about this! My name is Simone, I am a 2nd year Global Finance Graduate, and this post offers my reflections on my rotation in the US.

Novo Nordisk in the US: Revolutionizing Diabetes Treatment for Patients Worldwide
During my previous rotation in Novo Nordisk Consulting, I spent 4 months on a super interesting project with our Product Supply area. Thus I was very excited when Novo Nordisk’s new Diabetes API* (DAPI) production facility project in the US was among the options for a rotation abroad. DAPI US is the largest pharmaceutical investment project ever made in the world, and it amounts to more than 13 billion DKK, so needless to say there is a lot of work to be done before the factory launch in 2021. The new factory addresses the supply need for Novo Nordisk’s recent breakthrough in the diabetes treatment tablet area; for the first time in history, diabetes patients will be able to substitute injecting themselves with taking a tablet.

Thus highly motivated, I began my 6 month US adventure in the Finance Team, only to discover that Finance was merely one of several areas I would be tasked with responsibilities within!


This is what the Diabetes API US site currently looks like, with the factory to be launched in 2021.

My Role and Responsibilities (Think: Octopus with a Fire Extinguisher!)
I quickly realised that the reality of working as part of a production site in progress is very different from the Headquarter reality. The distance to very senior management is shorter, and from day 1 I was given a large amount of responsibility to run projects within both Finance and Procurement, with frequent sparring from senior leadership.

As one example, I was tasked with building a long term financial model that simulates total production facility costs on a 10 year horizon and takes into account all conceivable scenarios, sensitivities, etc. Aside from being a complex and challenging task, it turned out to be a task that taught me a great deal about production cost structures, cost simulation methods, and financial forecasting techniques.

As another example, I was asked to project manage the establishment and implementation of a Procurement Strategy for the entire production site. This basically entailed everything from pragmatically uncovering and categorizing the consolidated equipment- and service needs from all site departments by running more than 20 meetings with managers, to a more high-level translation of the final Procurement Plan and Strategy into presentations for senior management in the US as well as in Novo Nordisk Headquarters in Denmark.

As a Global Finance Graduate, your colleagues and managers will expect a lot from you, and this is just as true when going abroad. Aside from being in charge of a range of projects (the two above merely examples), I was given an exponentially increasing amount of assignments throughout my rotation, exposing me to a wide range of the business areas. My experience with Novo Nordisk in the US was a classic example of how the more you prove yourself capable, the higher and wider the degree of trust that management will put in you – the main benefit of having the title Graduate being that the bar starts high!

Summing up my rotation abroad, I will venture that it provides you with a work (and personal) experience for life, strengthening your professional and personal flexibility and dynamic capabilities so highly valued in today’s international business world, where understanding different cultures and work environments can make a very big difference.

… and I would do it all over again if I got the chance! :)


*Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient


Me in Monument Valley national park in Arizona on a road trip with three other graduates.

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Three tips for the application process

Category: Global Finance | (2) comments

As you may have noticed, the application window for Novo Nordisk’s Graduate Programmes 2017 has now opened (link to the application)! We are very excited about receiving your applications and look forward to welcome some of you as our graduate colleagues in September 2017.

If you are interested in becoming a Global Finance Graduate, you should first make sure that you fulfil the listed requirements. At some point, you should also start considering the application steps of submitting a CV, a cover letter and your latest grade transcript. Submitting these required documents might not come as a big surprise, but what is different to most application processes is that we ask you to provide a 1-minute video as well. In this short video, we want you to tell us why you are the ideal candidate for the Global Finance Graduate Programme.

Even though your required “deliverables” of CV, cover letter and video will be different from one another, I have three main tips for a good application that I believe apply to all steps of the application:

What is my motivation?
Before getting into action, you should ask yourself the following question: “Why do I want to apply to become a Global Finance Graduate at Novo Nordisk?”. Today, we are used to do everything in front of our laptop. But, professionals always give the same tip; start your process with the laptop closed. This holds for example when creating an Excel model, producing a slide deck or preparing for a presentation. Last week I attended a presentation skills workshop with all graduates. The course instructor Barry told us that the very first step of the process is to decide on the purpose of the presentation. Opening PowerPoint should be the very last step for preparing a presentation. I would encourage you to start in a similar way – what is the purpose of you applying? In general, I believe that reflecting upon your motivation is always a healthy exercise when graduation is approaching and you are considering what positions you would like to apply for.

Don’t get stressed if you cannot figure out what your motivation is right away. If you don’t know the answer, then you might realise that you want to get some more “meat on the bones” about the position. If you feel that this applies to you, I have provided some useful links in the end of this blog post. If you think that you have a solid knowledge about Novo Nordisk and what the Global Finance Graduate Programme has to offer, but you still might not know why you are motivated, then you should maybe consider whether this is actually the right position for you. Or if you like, you can always reach out to me if there is anything you are wondering about or have in mind. Being more aware about your motivation will help you throughout the whole process – from creating the different parts of your application to potentially ending up in the Graduate Recruitment Centre.

What are my core strengths?
So now when you know that you want to apply for the programme – and you know why – it is time to start thinking about what you could contribute with. My main tip regarding this is to build upon your actual core strengths – as opposed to what you think we want to hear and trying to tick off all the “boxes”. Your application will be more precise if you have identified your core strengths that you also can provide examples of. Knowing your strengths will not only help you write a more spot-on application but also help you during the potential interviews later on.

If you don’t know what your core strengths are, think through a few situations where you have felt at your best and ask yourself why. If you dare, it can also be a good idea to ask your friends, classmates or co-workers about what they consider to be your core strengths. This could also provide a chance for you to learn something new about yourself or to understand others’ perception of you. We don’t expect you to be the best in everything! And thus my recommendation is to focus on the areas where you actually can shine rather than listing everything that you can manage.

Make the recruiter’s life easier
The rumour has it that recruiters spend less than 30 seconds (!) to scan a CV and determine the quality of an application. Even though I don’t say that this is the case for Novo Nordisk where all applications are carefully screened, assuming they fulfil the standard requirements, the fact is that the people screening your CV will have a lot of work to do during a limited amount of time. Hence, you have the chance to do the recruiter a favour by making the screening process easier. Specifically:

1) Provide your Grade Point Average (GPA) – it is easier for you to calculate your own GPA than for the recruiter to calculate hundreds of GPAs.

2) Good structure – a good structure and an easy-to-follow format is key. You are applying for a finance position and your application will be screened by finance professionals. Thus, I am rather certain that a neat layout will win over an attempt to be very creative at the cost of losing the structure.

3) You don’t need to tell your whole life story – in line with my tip above regarding your core strengths, you don’t need to tell us everything. Focus on what is most important and highlight that.


Clearly, I am not a professional recruiter but I hope that my tips above have provided you with some guidance on what you should keep in mind during the application process. And if you make it through to the next step of the process – remember that it can always be a good idea to remember these three essential tips; What is my motivation?, What are my core strengths? and Make the recruiter’s life easier. Finally, I would encourage you to keep your social media profiles up to date and professional (at least LinkedIn).

As promised earlier, you may find some tips of links below if you want to learn more about Novo Nordisk and the Global Finance Graduate Programme.

I wish you the best of luck, should you decide to apply. The last day for applying is February 12th.

Kind regards,

Global Finance graduate program and the rotations (Graduate blog)
On Business School and Meaningful employment
Novo Nordisk graduate or management consultant?

The Global Finance Programme
Marn’s description of the Global Finance Programme
The Global Finance Programme

Examples of rotations
Marn’s first rotation in Strategic Finance (Product Supply)
Management consulting in Novo Nordisk’s internal Finance consultancy
My first rotation in Investment Management (Product Supply)

Novo Nordisk
About Novo Nordisk

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Smart Glasses and Finance – who would have thought?

Category: Global Finance Uncategorized | (0) comments

Hi everyone,

In my last blog I discussed the structure of the Global Finance Graduate Programme. But if you’re interested in applying for the programme, you of course want to know what the daily work will look like. So in the following I will give you some insights into my own experience working for Novo Nordisk since September. If you haven’t read it already, Josephine’s blog about her job in Investment Management is definitely worth the read as well.

Last summer I received an e-mail from the Global Finance Graduate Programme manager saying I would start in Product Supply. More specific, the Strategic Finance team in “Diabetes Finished Products”. Without knowing too much about what I would be doing, I started in September and quickly learned it is a very exciting job.

Diabetes Finished Products
As global market leader in diabetes care, with an insulin market share of 46%, Novo Nordisk produces a lot of insulin across seven production sites around the world. Diabetes Finished Products makes sure the active ingredient is turned into liquid insulin captured in medical devices that patients can use. In our headquarter in Copenhagen we make strategic decisions about what volumes to produce at the sites in the different regions, whether to expand a certain site with a new production line or how to increase efficiency worldwide.

Strategic Finance
Within Diabetes Finished Products (DFP), Strategic Finance is responsible for the financial analyses of strategic decisions. For example: how much would it cost to build a new production line at our site in France vis-à-vis our site in China? In other words, Strategic Finance quantifies the business case. Another main task of Strategic Finance is to initiate projects that can improve our cost base in the long run. For instance: how can we professionalise our procurement set-up of materials and services such that we spend less money on external parties?

My responsibilities

The Strategic Finance team I work for is small (only 4 people including me), which means I get much exposure and responsibilities. I have been working on two major projects in different areas. First of all, I am project manager of a project called Smart Glasses. In an attempt to increase efficiency, we figured that our operators in production can wear smart glasses, which are glasses that help them performing their job by showing videos, checklists and provide real-time relevant production data. In this way, we can reduce mistakes and time spent, thereby increasing productivity. Being project manager means I have “sold” the project in a presentation to higher management, I have had meetings with technology vendors, I am meeting internal stakeholders like Quality Assurance (which make sure we produce following the authorities’ requirements) and I attended a technology conference in Copenhagen. I never thought I would get to try on smart glasses and work with this project before I started at Novo Nordisk!

A second project I have been working on is developing a marginal cost model. This model can tell how much more employees we need in which teams if we increase the volumes of product X at production site Y. Also, now we know quite detailed how much the energy bill would go up if we were to increase volumes, or how much we would have to increase spending on protective clothing.

I presented the findings for my two main projects to my manager, my manager’s manager and even one level higher up. Just saying: the expectations of a Global Finance Graduate are high, which also means you get exposed to a lot of responsibility.

I hope this gave you an insight into what I am doing at Novo Nordisk. If you want to know more, we are hosting a dinner on Thursday the 26th of January where you can learn about the Global Finance Graduate Programme. Read more here and remember to apply before January 15th! If you have any questions, please comment below!

Best regards,

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