Interview Tips

After getting your foot through the door with an amazing CV, now its time to impress face to face.

These needn’t be so daunting… This is your time to sell yourself and get that job. Below are a few handy hints of how to sail through the interview process:

Preparation And Confidence
Preparation and confidence are very important tips. Good preparation always creates confidence. So the important thing to an interview is to be well prepared. In this you have to consider two things:

You must prepare yourself practically for the interview.
  • What you will be wearing?
  • How you will travel there and how long it will take?
You have to gather information which is useful during the interview.
  • Obtain a job description, so you know what the job involves.
  • Find out the companies website address or obtain some of the companies marketing material / brochures.
Preparing To Meet The Employer
The interview is not the time to get to know about the post or the employers business. It is a chance for you and the employer to get to know one another.

Gather information about your employer before you are interviewed like what are their current projects, what other interest’s do they have? Check the companies’ website to understand what they do or what they produce. Look at their performance against their competitors. You could even look at them via Companies House to see what the company turnover is and who own them.

You should understand the job description, or ask someone in a similar post. Otherwise ring us to clarify.
Keep in mind that the employer is interested in you as a person, your experiences and your opinions do take the time to sit down and think about you, who you are and what you have achieved.

Remember to take your CV detailing your work record and what you have achieved. Make notes and prepare and rehearse key points about yourself.

Checklist
When scheduled to attend an interview you must consider the following things:
  • You have to confirm about the time, date and location of the interview and name of interviewee where appropriate.
  • You have to plan to get there no earlier than half an hour before the interview time.
  • You must look presentable and professional.
  • If you have more than one interview, concentrate on one interview at a time.
  • If you are asked to bring certificates, references etc., get them ready before the day. Your interview letter must be with you.
  • On arrival ensure the receptionist knows you are there.

Be on time!
Public transport may be useless if the traffic is heavy. Always keep in mind that you never get a second chance to make a first impression. So be on time at the particular location of interview.

Also if you arrive very early, see if you can wait in a nearby coffee shop or shop. And if you are going to be late, then best option is call them or call us.

Write down and practice possible questions!
If you obtain the job description, think about some of the Technical questions that may be asked. It will make it easier to remember when you get to the interview. Avoid sounding as though you assume the job is yours.

It is fine to ask about the package. You could also try a fewer more testing questions such as how they differentiate themselves from their competitors or what they think the toughest / hardest part of the job is.

You never get a second chance to make a first impression!
First keep in mind that you never get a second chance to make a first impression so be careful.

Here are some points to remember:
  • Smiling is one of the things which may matter in your impression. A good smile goes a long way.
  • Dressing is also an important thing. You should dress in professional manner. And must be formal looking.
  • Do not forget to shake hands when arriving and leaving. In addition to this thank them for their time.
  • Giving eye contact without glaring is showing your confidence.

Do not talk too much!
Always remember that communication is two-way things so give them a chance. Also don't interrupt the interviewer when he/she is talking. Give him/her chance to talk.

One common mistake candidates make when interviewing is talking too much. It is important to listen to the question asked and answer that question. Keep your answers to two to three minutes at the most. When you limit your time, you tend to stay more focused. It is very easy to stray off the subject and ramble about things irrelevant to the job if your answer is too long.

Be enthusiastic and positive!
During the interview always be enthusiastic. Do not say bad points regarding your previous employers. Focus on positive achievements and views.

Check in During Interviews
Your initial interview answers should be brief. But some of your best stories may take time to detail, then after two minutes ask for permission to go on. You may say something like, "Now I have described about my project, would you like to hear about my role in detail?"

Answer Briefly
The best interviews have a give and take atmosphere. To do this, you need to ask questions and try to draw out your interviewer rather than talking about yourself non-stop. When it comes to talking during an interview, sometimes less is more. A general rule is you should speak one-third of the time and definitely no more than half of the time. When it is your turn to speak, do not hesitate to talk about yourself.

First Comes the Phone
Presently telephone screening is becoming very common. So you need to be prepared for the phone to ring at any time. These screenings may be for 10 to 15 minutes, depending on your answers and fit for the job. It is helpful if you have thought about questions likely to be asked during the screening and prepared your answers.

Look Them in the Eyes
Eye contact is showing your confidence. Eye contact is one of the most important aspects of nonverbal communication and can make a significant difference in how you present yourself. If you look away when speaking to someone, you are viewed as lacking confidence or interest. So always answer the question with eye contact to interviewer.

Look Better, Feel Better
If you want to spruce up your appearance for the interview but can not afford new clothes, consider altering an outfit you already have by pairing it with a different shirt, tie, blouse or accessory. Even on a tight budget, you can find some real bargains out there. Think about what you need before you go out shopping. Outlet stores and resale shops offer some great treasures. For better or worse, looks can make a difference.

Talk about specific achievements!
Interviewers like to know how you felt about a particular success. Some will ask for specific examples of things you have done that you are particularly proud of; how you solved problems; how you learned - and improved - from difficult situations.

Think of an Interview as a First Date
Instead of the Inquisition, think of a job interview as a first date: you are both trying to figure out if there is a match. This mind-set proffers many advantages. You come off as curious, not desperate, you do not assume that too-formal, phoney-appearing job-seeker persona, you talk about what you want to talk about instead of just passively getting bombarded with the employer's probes and you are more likely to ask questions during the interview. Those questions will help you assess if you really want the job. Treat the interview as a first date, and you will both be better informed when deciding whether you should hook up.
Get The Info
Informational interviews are a great way to get leads and information regarding company. It is important that the person you contact understands you are seeking information not a job. Be prepared when you ask for an appointment to say what you are looking for and why you want to talk to this person. At the informational interview, have a prepared list of questions. At the end, ask if the person has any recommendations of others you could speak with.

Virtual Thanks
You can send follow-up letters through email to thank them for the interview. However, if you contact us after your interview we will give the client your feedback. Remember job hunting is a two way thing.

Attitude Adjustment
It is difficult to remain upbeat in a tough job market. When you start feeling down, take steps to turn your thinking around. Go for a walk, or do something fun. It may be just what you need to feel relaxed and at ease. Getting together with friends and having a support system will help you to laugh and keep going.

Explain Why You Left
Follow these guidelines when interviewers ask, "Why did you leave your company?" Carefully describe the reason for your departure, and do not go into details unless asked. Provide references to support your reasons for leaving and job performance. Stay with the facts of what happened, what you did, how you felt and what you learned. Then describe how you will handle things differently in the future.

Your References
For your reference list, you want two or three people and their contact information. Do not forget to get permission to use your references' names, and while you are at it, ask how they prefer to be contacted. You should also send them a copy of your resume so they will be aware of what you are saying about yourself.

Know What You Offer
Prepare answers for open-ended questions, like, "Tell me about yourself," by making a list of your skills and traits that match the employer's requirements. The closer your skills and traits are to the job description, the better chance you have of landing the job. You should leave the interviewer with a clear picture of what you have to offer.

Prove What You Could Do
Always put a positive spin on your answers to difficult questions. If you lack a particular skill or do not know a certain computer program, be sure to emphasize how quickly you learn. Give an example of a time when you were able to get up to speed in a similar situation. Companies are interested in people who can hit the ground running.

Sell Yourself
Interviewing is about selling yourself. The product you are selling is you. Give them reasons to buy. Tell them what you can do for them. Emphasize what you can bring to the company, department and position. Convince them that your product is better than the competition's

Talking Salary
Timing is everything in the interview. Let them bring up the subject of money. If you are asked what your salary expectations are too early in the process, just say you would rather postpone that discussion until you have more information about the position.

Ask your way into a better job
You can not really tell how good a job is from a want ad. There's often a gap between the exciting opportunity portrayed in the ad and the actual job. You can often get the straight scoop about a job by asking the right questions. For example, in the job interview, ask, "What attributes are most needed to succeed in this job?"

Do not forget to listen
Listening is one of the most underused interview skills. Most candidates are so nervous about answering interview questions correctly that they forget to listen. Follow these tips:
  • Listen through eye contact.
  • Listen with non verbal expressions.
  • Listen until the speaker is finished.
  • Do not interrupt.

It is OK to be nervous
Not only is it OK to be nervous about an interview, but it is essential for you to accept how you feel. Telling yourself you should feel differently than you do is unrealistic and just makes you feel bad about yourself. What's the worst that can happen at an interview? For many, it would be not getting an offer. Did you ever think that maybe the job wasn't right for you? Try to look at the process as a learning experience.

Put up with rejection?
If you are rejected from the company, you may feel hurt, angry or fed up. Instead of being stuck in feeling rejected, take back the power by staying proactive. If you really wanted to work for that particular company, sit down and write a letter. Remind them of all the positive points you could bring to the organisation. Let them know you are still interested in working for the company if something should change or open up.

Face the feedback
If you ask for feedback from an interviewer, be prepared to hear things that could be upsetting. You should listen carefully, and take notes to refer to and react to. Do not argue or defend yourself. At last do not forget to thank the interviewer. Then, take the advice and think about changing some techniques to improve on your next interview.

Follow the interviewer
During the interview, your interviewer is giving you information that can guide you on how to behave during the meeting. Observe your interviewer's style. Listen very carefully, and let him/her know that you have been listening by asking good questions and making good comments. Answer questions by providing the information asked for.
Emotional Preparation
Preparing emotionally for the interview is also important. The right mood helps you perform at your best. Try out following points for preparing emotionally:
  • Get moving that means go for a walk, run, exercise, meditate, do yoga, stretch, dance.
  • Sing your favourite songs while driving to the interview.
  • Repeat an inspirational phrase aloud that's meaningful for you

Ask Questions
There is always the opportunity to ask them questions at the end of the interview, remember the interview is a two-way process; you need to be sure you want to join them. Try to concentrate on issues, which are both important to you and combine an apparent interest in the company. Write your questions down prior to the interview and take them with you.

Be honest!
Be honest with every question. No need to lying about your background and/or skills. If you get caught then you will definitely out. Job interviews are about matching needs, if there is not a good match, then there is no chance of job.

Check your CV for possible gaps!
If there is any gap between your academic then make sure you know how you are going to explain time gaps on your CV.

Presentation
Dressing is also important aspect at the time of interview. Dressing should be appropriate for the post and the company. Try to get information about what the company would expect from employees. What would be appropriate for a building company is very different for a public relations agency. Be well-groomed and clean and above all try to look confident.

Thank-You Salutations
While writing an interview thank-you note, problem may arise like whether to use a formal or informal salutation? If the hiring manager is in a high position of authority, use a formal salutation. But if the hiring manager suggests using her first name. When in doubt, use a formal salutation.