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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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What Happens in the Graduate Assessment Center?

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It is not easy to describe the recruitment process in Novo Nordisk, however, if I would try to describe it I would say it’s a quite challenging, intense and at the same time quite a fun experience, so congratulations for those of you who have already passed the first phases of the process and who might be now shortlisted for the final phase: The Recruitment Center.

It is where the real challenge and extreme fun will come, you might be wondering now what lies ahead at the recruitment center so I will try to brief an overview of what happens at the recruitment center and how to best prepare for it.

Group exercises: tend to make up a large part of the assessment center and actually I found it to be one the most exciting parts as it gives the chance to interact with other candidates in different teams and engage in group activities that it is designed to challenge personal skills. So probably you will need to focus on good communication, planning, negotiation, sharing and even leading at some parts other team members. If things get more and more exciting you could also be tested to demonstrate conflict management in case of lack of planning and lots of arguments among team members.

Remember to be proactive and act in a team; do not try to impose your ideas without engaging with other team members, sharing and discussing ideas with them. Remember to listen as much as you speak.

Case study and presentation: an intellectually challenging part of the program is the case study part where you might be asked to solve a real life business case working in a team. Try to dedicate a considerable part of the case study time in planning and coordinating tasks among your team as it is not a single case study that you will have to solve on your own and the time spam will be just sufficient if you were able to plan well and divide tasks with other team members.

Business case is not intended to test your financial or technical skills as much as it tests your ability of logical thinking, planning and engaging in solving the case with other members of the team. Last year we were asked to make a presentation for our business case, the interviewers might be asking lots of questions to test your presentation skills and ability to state your ideas in an organized confident way.

For the presentation part I will just advice to be confident, make sure to speak in a clear voice and just relax.

Interview: for the interview you might be asked different questions to test how you can best fit into the program, so prepare well by reading about Novo Nordisk in general and your program in specific and make sure to have your career goals set clearly in your mind as this might answer why you might want Novo Nordisk as your career life company. You could be interviewed by more than one interviewer. The best tip for the interview is to just be yourself.

In addition to the group exercises, case studies and interviews a big part of the recruitment center is about networking and socializing, this can be during coffee breaks, lunches or dinners and this is actually where most of the fun is. It’s quite interesting to have candidates from more than 40 countries gathered in one place.

I hope this overview has answered lots of your curiosity about the Recruitment Center; however, I am sure the day of recruitment may carry a lot more challenge and fun than what have been described in this post so keep your preparations high.

Feel free to drop me any questions you might be wondering about.

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Tips for interviews and how you are selected…

Category: Business Processes International Operations Business International Operations Finance Uncategorized | (8) comments

Dear Candidates,

Now the light at the end of the tunnel is seen. Less than 10 days left to apply.  Do not forget to apply before 9 Feb. What will happen after 9 Feb? I will share my experience of selection process in Turkey Affiliate. The process may vary affiliate to affiliate, year to year and program to program. Though, I will share my selection process assuming this may help you to understand the main shape.

After application, your CVs will be examined carefully and if your qualifications seem to be appropriate for the program, you are called by local HR.

They direct you to independent selection center to measure your English competency.

If you are able to get needed score of English, then it means you come to next level.

You are invited to meet with directors and you are interviewed for your background and qualifications. They try to know you both academically and personally. For this part; my suggestion is “be yourself, please do not pretend since they will catch you by cross questions…”

You are invited to the assesment center. It takes half day and you involve various interviews, case studies in which you work with other candidates. For this part, my suggestion is ” do not try to play the role of leader instead be the motivator. Never get too ambitious and aggresive, instead try to compromise and result oriented. You may need to accept the ideas that you do not really like. Accept them if it helps to reach a solution and saves you from the endless debates… Please be aware of this:  you do not need to make everybody believe your ideas, instead be open to change and respect others’ values as well. ”

Now, you passed to other level. You are invited for the presentation session. You are provided with a laptop and a business case. You solve it and get ready for the 20 min presentation. Those will happen in an hour. You can not be prepared earlier. My tips for this part ” Be smart as much as you can. Be familiar with marketing terminology and try to suggest various cases. Think more and make a well defined presentation. Your presentation skills should come to stage. Do not forget to use proper language and be energetic and be motivated and be yourself…Again !”

If you pass this level, now a test will be sent. It is like an intelligence test both verbal, analytical and visual. Weird shapes are designed according to specific algorithm and you are asked to understand and imitate this algorithm to another set of shapes. It is fun actually. For me the hardest part was verbal, since the texts are very long to read and the time was too short. You need to be hurry and make skim reading. The analytical part was fun, too. If you like mathematics and familiar with algebra, it is not a big deal. But again, in each part you race with time. Do your best, since the scores will be kept and informed to you in assesment center in one interview. One more tip: be sure that your internet connection will never be broken down during test, for this you can choose using cabled internet instead of wifi.

Now, the local part is over. You are invited for the final assesment centre in Copenhagen. You meet the other candidates and work with them for  group assignments.This part takes 2 days, you really get exhausted since you need to wake up very very early in the morning: Like 5:00 in the morning…You need to be healty and energetic for those days. When your energy falls down, your performance may get worse… Eat well, sleep well, wear smart, try to speak English fluently, be friendly and be open. Be open to anything. Be sure that somebody from the assesment team is watching you and taking notes about your reactions. This situation may seem stressful, but i should admit that I enjoyed a lot. I learned a lot, and I even thought that I am glad to have this experince even if I would not be selected… You go home satisfied and enjoyed…

Here you can find, what we have experinced in final selection with our words:


Now, it is their turn. You did your best. Your scores and comments about your performance will be gathered and analysed carefully…

After the process ends and they come to a result, they will let you know. The job offer is made towards the end of March and you sign the contract in April. The first day of work will be in September. Welcome !!!!

So, though the process seems to be long, it is fun and unforgettable experience. Go for it… Apply before 9th of February. Here is the link:


Good Luck, Best Regards





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