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Interview tips

Tips and advice for that all important interview

No need for nerves... Read our interview tips
No need for nerves... Read our interview tips

 By Carolyn Lewis

Carolyn Lewis at Pathway Resourcing (www.pathwayresourcing.com) provides key tips that will help you prepare and perform well in job interviews.

As a professional recruitment consultant it is important for us to able to give our candidates the best advice when conducting an interview. For a candidate, the interview is usually the first step towards what will hopefully be the next exciting step in your career.

Interviews can be nerve-racking experiences, however they need not be if you prepare yourself in the right way.

Before the interview

Research the organisation and the role.

Taking time to learn as much as possible about the company’s services and products, as well as its customers and competitors, will give you an edge during the interview. This knowledge is the foundation on which you will construct answers that demonstrate your ability to perform in the role. Being able to demonstrate this information also highlights your diligent and conscientious approach – fine attributes in any prospective employee.

Look the part

Make sure you look the part – even if the working environment is casual you should be “suited and booted”. This will not only ensure you make a good first impression, but if you know you look good you will feel more confident.

Know your CV

Often an interview will be based around the experience you have outlined in your CV. Ensure that you are familiar with the contents of your CV, including any gaps in employment. You will come across badly if you are unable to refer accurately to the CV you submitted, and you could give the impression that you have not provided an honest summary of your background and skills.
 

Familiarise yourself with commonly asked interview questions

There are several key questions that are used time and time again in interview situations. Use these questions to show yourself off to your best advantage by familiarising yourself with them and planning your answers and examples. 

Be prepared: arrive five minutes early

Your interview is likely to be held somewhere unfamiliar; be sure to equip yourself with relevant maps and directions and allow plenty of extra time for your journey. Aim to arrive at the office 5-10 minutes early and if you think you are going to be late, ensure you call to let the person who is interviewing you know as soon as possible.

Advice on what to do during the interview follows on the next page.

During the interview

Eye contact

Making eye contact during the interview is a key part of representing yourself as a confident and professional individual.

Show your enthusiasm

Be enthusiastic about the experience and skills you could contribute to the position you are being interviewed for; you can’t expect anyone else to be excited about the role you could play if you aren’t.

Listen to the questions you are asked

Answering questions under pressure is difficult, but try to avoid going off on tangents. If you do wander off the point try and refocus your answer as you bring it to a close. If you are not clear about the question you are being asked, do not be afraid to ask for clarification.

Prepare your questions

As the interview is closing you will often be asked if you have any questions. You should use this part of the interview as an opportunity to demonstrate your research on the company. This is also a chance for you to find out a little more about the role and the company; after all you want to be sure it is the right position for you.

A good question to use in this part of the interview is “Do you feel that I am a good fit for this role?” Their answer will provide you with an opportunity to address any concerns they seem to have about your suitability.

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