Interview Preparation


The interview is the most important part of the recruitment process; it is your opportunity to make a good impression and to find out more about the position and the company that you have applied to.

You must remember it is just as much up to you to make sure the interview runs smoothly as the person(s) who interview you.

Here are some tips to help you that should be applied before, during and after the interview.

Ask your Consultant to give you as much information about the position and company prior to the interview, this allows you to prepare any questions you may have and be prepared for those that you will have to answer.

Research the company and also competitors and the market, use websites, trade magazines and other relevant business tools that will assist you with this.

Find out who is going to interview you, if it is your prospective manager, the interview may be more detailed.
If the Personnel Manager is interviewing, it may be less direct or detailed, but could still involve testing.
Will there be a test to take? Find out before the interview and ask for an example of the things you'll be asked to do.
Prepare a list of questions that you wish to ask at the interview and a list of questions they are likely to ask you so your prepared for any difficult answers that you may have to give. Know your strengths and weaknesses, any difficult situations you have handled and why you are suitable for the position applied for.

Remember to take any information you will need at the interview including CV, references, certificates, examples of your work etc (if requested by the employer).

Always good to read the job advert again prior to the interview, refresh your memory with what they are exactly looking for.

Arrive around 10 minutes early make sure your mobile phone is turned off and you are aware of the travelling involved prior to the interview. If necessary ask the Employer for directions, bus / train routes or details of car parking.

Smart appearance well presented and smart at all times, regardless of company dress code. Be friendly, positive and greet with a firm handshake.

Maintain eye contact, relax and use positive body language throughout the interview.

Finally, a good tip is to follow up your interview with an email or phone call. Its also the ideal opportunity to mention anything you may have forgotten to talk about at the interview.

Some Do's and Don'ts -

Do's Dont's
  • Be confident
  • Shake hands firmly and introduce yourself
  • Be friendly and polite ? maintain eye contact at all times
  • Look interested - ask questions as well as answering them
  • Answer questions as fully as you can, always give examples, avoid
    yes and no answers
  • Be honest
  • Ask if you don't understand a question and ask them to repeat it
  • Speak clearly
  • Sell yourself - get your good points across/be positive
  • Give a friendly smile (if in doubt don't - it is better to look serious than insincere)
  • Sit until invited
  • Fidget and slouch in the chair
  • Smoke
  • Swear (even mildly)
  • Criticise former employers
  • Interrupt the interviewer
  • Draw attention to your weaknesses
  • Go over the top - stay calm and stick to the facts
  • Don't allow for any distractions - mobile phones etc