After a handful of interviews, she chose DNV, formerly Det norske Veritas/DNV, where she went straight into a permanent job as a Graduate in Cyber Security. She was in no doubt that this was the place for her. Her good impression of DNV started early in the process and has not changed. "The interview process was very good compared to other places. My gut feeling was definitely that this was the best place," she admits.
Earlier this year, DNV climbed to the top of an independent ranking of Norway's most attractive employers, ahead of several well-known companies. Exciting tasks, an excellent working environment and good career opportunities were stated to be the reasons for this. "I particularly liked the focus on professional development, and that improving your technical skills is just as acceptable as taking the normal management route.
They made a good impression by talking about all the different opportunities that exist within the company and they've definitely lived up to their promises," confirms Vilde. The company is best known for its core activities relating to the classification of ships, certification, testing and advisory services, and is currently actively making efforts to digitalize its own services and the industries it is involved in. Key to this is a combination of traditional technical expertise and new opportunities in the field of applied IT.
Since Vilde's education was not specialized within a specific field of IT, the company's internal flexibility has been worth its weight in gold. "After all, we're a company that provides services to handle and minimize risk, and IT and digital solutions comprise an increasing part of our everyday jobs.
Learning about the safety aspect relating to critical infrastructure and digital threats has been very useful and exciting. As a consultant, you're involved in many different projects, and in my first six months I also noticed a different expertise that we have in DNV."
Vilde is still working in the same business area, Digital Solutions, but in a new department offering Information Risk Management consultancy services. Digital Solutions builds bridges between all the business areas, and delivers software and digital solutions across industries and professional areas. Information Risk Management focuses on the modelling and structuring of data in new IT solutions.
"Right now, I'm spending a lot of time on data quality and the representation of knowledge in a structured manner that the computer can understand. This is a subdomain of AI (Artificial Intelligence), known as "knowledge representation and reasoning". We work on large, comprehensive projects where the potential for automation is huge," Vilde tells us enthusiastically.
She says this was also the topic of this year's summer project for which she was the project manager, a role that was completely new to this mathematician. "It was very exciting to be allowed to try something completely new – management and 'soft skills' in general are incredibly useful to a consultant.
The summer project has also been very valuable to us as a company. It gave me a lot of input for my further work, but I must admit I was itching to do the technical work," says this consultant who, between meetings and other tasks, is coding a prototype linked to a completely new solution for delivering standards and requirements to the industry.
Here are Vilde's five tips for jobseekers
#1– Be clear about what you want! Of course you must be attractive to the employer, but remember that as a student you are also attractive to the company, so don't be afraid to ask questions. I think that's very important. "The company has to suit you just as much as you have to suit the company."
#2– Make it clear who you are as a person! A slight cliché, but you have to appear to be who you are and show your interests during the interview situation so that you get a job that is as suitable as possible for you. As a student, the labour market is incredibly new to you, and I too very much felt I had to make a favourable impression.
#3– Have all the formalities in place! When I was responsible for recruitment to the summer project, I noticed that very many people had forgotten to enclose the normal things such as their CV, grades, etc. That can happen to the best candidate. So you can't check too many times that you have provided everything requested in the job advert – otherwise you can lose out on a good opportunity.
Once you have finally got the job, Vilde thinks you should...
#4– Follow your interests, as that benefits both you and the employer! For example, here at DNV there are so incredibly many internal opportunities, and you are in no way tied to certain tasks. As long as you seek new challenges, find a path that is exciting and state what you want, I think you will get a fantastic job
#5– If you don't say how you want to shape the job, no one can read your thoughts! I think very many new graduates feel that, as new employees, they can't say what they want or wish to do, but that's not the case. Although it can of course be both scary and unpleasant, you are the one who shapes your own job.
Focus on new graduates
After a few challenging years with limited recruitment, DNV is now once again in a position to recruit, and has a focus on new graduates. "New employees often work with experts in their areas. Experience has shown that recent graduates bring new perspectives that add a lot of value to all those involved," says Tommy Bjørnsen, DNV Norway's country manager.
DNV is one of Norway's oldest, most international companies, with 300 offices in more than 100 countries. The DNV Group's global headquarters are idyllically situated in Veritas Park, which is located by the water's edge at Høvik, just outside Oslo.
"We're a global company, which provides opportunities to work abroad for those who want that. We give our employees a lot of responsibility early on, and actively pave the way for professional and personal development. We've also received a lot of feedback stating that people find DNV's objectives give meaning to their work," says Norway's country manager. The company's objectives are to safeguard life, property and the environment.
"We see that such factors have become more important to new graduates than a cool workplace, delicious coffee and that type of thing – although we also have those," says Tommy.
Tommy also has some tips from the employer side:
- You must want to contribute and help make a difference! That means, for instance, that you must be open to learning and sharing knowledge – the number of years of experience that you have is not crucial.
- Those we hire are people with a strong professional platform who are enthusiastic and interested in developing professionally and personally once they get the job. This also means we expect them to be prepared to work on varied tasks.
- Applicants who clearly manage to tell us who they are, what they can do and why they are the right person for the job are in a stronger position in the recruitment process.
- Remember too that it is also positive if you have been involved in something in your leisure time, have held a post or studied abroad. It's important to state this in the job application.