Preparing for job applications and interviews
Job interviews are a reality of looking for work, and one that can be daunting and uncomfortable.
Luckily, irrespective of the kind of interview that you are attending (one-on-one, group, in front of a panel etc.) the key to success is always preparation.
To prepare for your interview, you should:
- Make sure that you are clear on the date, time and location of the interview, as well as the name and position of the person you will be speaking to.
- Be armed with a plan on how you’ll get to the interview, making sure that you leave plenty of time for the journey.
- Learn as much as you can about the company and position. You can do this by looking at the company’s website, annual reports and news articles etc.
- Look at the job advertisement and your job application again. Knowing that you’ve been offered an interview based on your application, should help your confidence.
- Try to anticipate some of the questions you might be asked, as your answers will be better if you’ve thought about them in advance. For example:
- What is your understanding of the role?
- Why are you interested in the role?
- How does your experience match the role?
- Can you talk about examples in the past, where you have demonstrated the key skills we are looking for?
- What achievements and accomplishments are you particularly proud of?
- What do you consider to be your strengths and weaknesses?
- How do you work as part of a team?
- How do you approach problems and challenges?
- Please remember, if you are asked about a weakness, that we all have them. What the question is really asking you is, how are you going to improve in the future?
Key points to remember about interviews
- Interviews are your opportunity to show that you have the skills and attributes listed on your resume, that you are genuinely interested in the role and that you will be a good fit.
- You will perform better if you’re well prepared.
- Be clear about the role, research the company, think about why your skills and experience make you perfect for the job and prepare for some common questions.
- First impressions are vital so make sure you think about your appearance and body language.
- Listen carefully and make sure you answer the questions asked, giving examples from your past which relate to your future performance with the new company.