Before the interview:
- Look at the company website. Every company has a website these days and one of the most common interview questions is ‘What do you know about our company?’ How many offices do they have, what locations do they work in, what sectors does the company employ people in – These are all things that can be learnt in minutes that can show that you have put in preparation for the interview. If needs be take some notes into the interview with these facts on.
- Re-read your CV. It might be a little bit of time since you have read it and usually it’s all the interviewer has in front of them so make sure you know it inside out. It’s always a good idea to take a copy of your CV with you to the interview.
- Think about what you would like to know about the role and write these questions down on a (smart) pad of paper that you bring with to make sure that you get these questions answered. Also make sure that you bring a pen and make sure it’s not chewed!
- Dress appropriately (almost always smart business attire). Even if you won’t be wearing a shirt and tie on a day to day basis for the job it’s important to give a good first impression and show that you are serious about the interview.
- Make sure you have the telephone number of the company and who you will be meeting. On (rare) occasions lateness may be tolerated for an interview (e.g. a car accident on the road making you late) but you need to make sure that the interviewer is aware that you are trying to get to the interview. The telephone number will also be useful if you are struggling to find the exact location of the office or struggling to get into the building.
- Know the address of where you are going and make sure that you arrive 10 minutes early.
During the interview:
- Pay attention to what the interviewer is asking you and try not to go off topic.
- Don’t talk over the interviewer. You will be keen to put your point across but make sure that they have finished speaking first.
- Whenever giving an answer try and back it up with an example. I am very experienced using AutoCAD as I have been using it on a day to day basis in my current role on projects X, Y and Z.
- Keep your answers positive – Even when being asked why you are looking to leave your current role, try and keep it upbeat. Try and focus on the positives such as career prospects or having a glass ceiling.
- They will ask you if you have any questions. Even if they have answered them all before they ask you, look down at your pad of paper where you wrote some questions down before the interview and point to it and say they have already covered them all.
Some good questions include ‘What is a typical day? What are the career\training opportunities? What attracted the interviewer to the company?’
Don’t ask about holidays or sick pay at this point.
At the end of the interview:
- At the end of the interview if you are interested in the role then make sure that the interviewer is aware!
A good way to close the interview is to say ‘Thanks very much for your time, I just want to say that I’m really interested in the role, is there anything else you would like to know about me or anything you would like me to go over again?’
If they say ‘Yes’ then it gives you one last chance to impress them or address any concerns.
If they say ‘No’ then say ‘Ok great I look forward to hearing from you, when do you think that might be?’
After the interview:
- Ring the recruitment consultant whilst the interview is fresh in your mind and pass on your feedback.