Congratulations on securing an interview!
During the interview it’s important to remember that this is a two-way process. As well as giving the best account of yourself, you also need to ensure that the role and company are the right fit for you.
To help you achieve this, we’ve put together our top 11 tips to ensure you have the best chance of landing that dream role!
1. Do your research!
The interviewer wants to know that you are genuinely interested in the company and the role that you are applying for. Make sure you have a solid knowledge of what the company does and learn as much as you can about them. A great place to start is their website and social media pages (LinkedIn is a really good way to get to know them!).
Don’t just scan the ‘about us’ section of their website. You should also look at any recent news within the business and ask your recruiter for any useful information about the company.
As well as finding out about the company, try and find out as much information as you can about the person interviewing you. Does the company website have a ‘meet the team’ section? Use this to find out what their role is and how they fit into the company.
2. Remember the details
It’s possible that you’re going for multiple interviews at different companies. If this is the case, make sure you take the time to get the details right!
Ensure you’ve got the right date and time, know who to ask for when you arrive, and are comfortable with the format that the interview will take. Some interviews may be one on one, while others might involve meeting with multiple people. There is of course the possibility that it could be a phone on video interview.
3. Learn about the role
Be sure to go through the job description in detail and make sure you fully understand it. What makes you the right candidate for this role? Identify any skills and experience you have that match the stated requirements. If you don’t have the exact experience that is listed, think about other skills you have that show you can do the job.
Job descriptions are often generic, so always ask your recruiter exactly what the role entails and what the company is looking for.
4. Prepare for common questions
There are some very common questions people get asked at interview, so make sure you have prepared for these! Write down notes and practise saying them out loud! Familiarise yourself with the STAR method and use this technique to structure your answers.
Situation: Set the scene and briefly talk about the scenario
Task: Talk about involvement and what the challenge was
Action: What action did you take and how was the situation resolved?
Results: What was the outcome of this. If you can, use data to show the results. Eg productivity was up by X%
5. ‘Tell me about yourself’
This is a very common way to start an interview. The interviewer will ask this as a way of easing you into the conversation to get you talking and find out if you’ll be a good fit for the company. Your answer should be relevant and professional. Start off by talking about your current role and how you’ve got there, but also include some information about you as a person and any hobbies or interests you have.
People can trip themselves up here by giving short answers or rambling too much and not getting their point across well. You don’t need to highlight every detail of your life. Try and read the room to gauge the interviewer’s reaction for clues on when to wrap up.
This is a great opportunity to tell them what makes you right for the role, so taking the time to properly prepare for this will help you deliver it confidently.
6. Plan ahead
Decide what you’re going to wear. If you’re not sure what’s appropriate, ask your consultant what the company dress code is, or have a look on social media to see if you can get an idea. Make sure you know how you’re going to get to the interview and how long this will take. If you’re using public transport, make sure you factor in time for any delays. Best practice is to arrive 5-10 minutes early.
If it’s a remote interview, make sure your device is fully charged and that you have a suitable place to do it without any distractions. Test that your headphones work and check that your camera is working properly.
7. Make a great first impression
Greet your interviewer with a smile and make eye contact. Listen carefully to what they tell you about the role and look for any clues that may help you in the interview process. Ask questions along the way if you can, this shows that you’re interested in the company and role.
A top tip is to be polite and friendly to everyone you meet! Many companies will ask opinions from anybody that meets you through the process, so make sure you treat everyone with the same level of respect.
Listen to the interviewer and don’t speak over them. Allow the person speaking to finish, wait a second and then answer the question.
9. Think of some questions
Interviewers will nearly always ask if you have any questions for them. This is your chance to find out more about the role and the company. Is there anything that wasn’t in the job description that you’d like to know more about? Do you want to know about the team dynamics? Try and prepare some questions that are specific to the role you’re applying to as well. This will go a long to way to showing how interested you are! Don’t forget, as well as getting a job offer, you also need to decide if the company is going to be a good fit for you!
Avoid asking questions about salary and benefits at this stage, this is something your recruiter can assist with after the interview.
10. Remember WHY
A really useful thing to consider when you’re preparing for your interview is why. Why are you interested in this role and company? Why are you the right person for the role? Why are you looking to leave your current role? It’s important that you answer this last question in a positive way. Be truthful but avoid speaking negatively about your current company or the people you work with.
11. Give feedback
Giving feedback to your recruiter is vital and should be done quickly while the experience is still fresh. At this point, if you’re unhappy with one of your responses, or you’ve forgotten to say something important, your recruiter can clarify this with the company. Providing your feedback can be really powerful, and it’s another way to show to the company your eagerness and that you’re still interested in the position.
Preparation really does help you go into every interview with confidence. Your recruiter wants you to do well and is there to help, so if you have any further questions reach out to them for advice.