Attending an interview can be, for some, a relatively nerve-racking experience so the team at Electus Recruitment have pulled together some expert advice on how to tackle the situation. Over the years we have witnessed many candidate’s success at interview stage by following a few simple tips. Obviously experience is key but the interview guidance below might be the difference between you and someone else getting the job role!
Before your interview find out everything you can about the company. Go to their website and find out about current events, contracts, projects and take a look at the ‘meet the team’ section to see who you might be working alongside. This will give you a good overview before you even walk into the interview.
Read the Job Description and Person Specification thoroughly, really get a grasp for what the job role entails so there are no nasty surprises at interview.
If you have been set the task of preparing a presentation prior to your interview, give yourself enough time to compete it as well as to rehearse it. There is nothing worse than reading off of a cue card or jumbling up the order. You want to look calm and professional in front of a potential new employer.
Work out what you are going to wear the night before so it is one less thing to worry about on the day of the interview. You should also leave home earlier than usual when attending the interview to avoid being delayed in traffic.
Take spare CVs with you. You can't assume that everyone in the room would have read it and it shows that you are pro-active as well as being super keen about the position.
Possible interview questions
Before attending an interview you should think about your responses to particular questions that the hiring manager might ask you about your current role and previous employment history. Remember to be positive about yourself, your abilities and your present employer!
Why do you want this job?
Think carefully about this question. Emphasise the positive aspects of the role which have attracted you to apply for the position. Do not mention the negative aspects of your current job or to make it sound like this new job role is just an escape route from your current position.
What can you offer to this role?
This is your chance to shine! Tell the interview panel about your achievements in your previous position(s) which are relevant to the new role and how you would be a great fit. Be sure to refer back to the job specification to say how you might be able to carry out particular tasks the company is looking for.
Why do you want to work for this company?
Emphasise the positive reasons why you want to join the company such as career progression, a new challenge or that you’d like more experience in this area. Avoid comments about more money or shorter hours.
What do you know about this company?
This is your chance to impress the interviewer with your knowledge that you have already researched prior to the interview. Give them a run down of their products/services, projects, news, company figures, customers, etc.
What can we offer that your previous company cannot offer?
Tread carefully here! Try not to mention any bad feeling towards your current employer, if there is any, and reiterate the reasons for wanting to move up the career ladder or taking a side step into a new industry.
What are your strengths/weaknesses?
Outline several strengths here and explain how these could be put to good use. Don’t dwell upon any weaknesses but do offer one as employers are sometimes looking for honesty within this question.
Questions to ask at the end of the interview
The interview is a two-way process. The company interviewing you will want to find out whether you are suitable for the position and you should also want to find out if the company and position are a right fit for you. Here are some questions you might want to consider:
Where will I fit into the overall organisational structure?
Who are your customers?
What is the company 5 year plan?
What are the chances of advancement/progression within this position?
What training do you provide?
At the end of the interview, if you are interested in the position, it is important to tell them. Ask what the procedure is to obtain feedback from the interview and when you could expect to hear from them. This shows the employer that you are keen and enthusiastic for the role. Finally, thank them for their time!