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In the job hunt process, there’s no doubting practice makes perfect. So, no matter how many job interviews you’ve done, it’s always worth considering how you can improve and what you can do better in the future. Make sure your skills are to scratch with the following interview tips:
• Research the company and your interviewer in order to gain a solid understanding of the business. It’s important to take note of their history, current offering, key staff, structure and company values.
• Know where you are going, how to get there and how long it will take for you to reach the location. Plan to arrive 10 minutes early, as arriving late for an interview is not the best first impression. If you are unexpectedly running late, call your consultant as soon as you realise, who can then inform the company and manage expectations.
• Dress appropriately. It is important that you arrive looking the part and be dressed in a way that reflects the potential workplace. This doesn’t necessarily mean suited and booted, but neatly presented.
• Make sure your mobile phone is switched off. You do not want your interview being disturbed by texts or phone calls.
• Your interview begins the moment you walk into a building, so it’s important to greet the receptionist or assistant with respect. They will report back to the interviewer if you are rude. Every impression should be a good one.
• If coffee is a necessary part of the day, make sure you remove the evidence before walking into the building – walking in with an empty coffee cup doesn’t give off the best look.
• Shake hands firmly – a limp or clammy handshake will be remembered for all the wrong reasons.
• Maintain good eye contact. This shows that you are attentive and interested.
• Sit up straight. Slouching can give off signals of laziness and a lack of awareness.
• Try not to use too many hand gestures. This can distract from the content of what you are saying.
• If there is more than one interviewer, make sure you address both people, regardless of who asked the question.
During the interview
• Speak confidently. Being softly spoken can give the impression of lack of self-assurance.
• Avoid using slang and pause words such as “like”, “um” and “err”.
• Show enthusiasm for the position without sounding desperate for employment. This is where your prior research can come in handy.
• Always tell the truth. Make sure that your answers come across in a factual and sincere fashion. The employer will find out about any lies on your CV or in your answers to their questions when they take up references and check your records.
• When answering questions, don’t just reply with a no or yes response. Expand on your answer and ensure that you showcase your skills and talents. Be sure to have examples.
• An interview is not the appropriate time to discuss salary, holiday or benefits. This is only to be discussed when being offered the position. Negotiations can be made in appropriate situations.
• Ask questions. It will show interest in the business and help you in your decision process if given the opportunity to join their team or progress to the next interviewing stage. Asking questions will allow you to gain a deeper understanding of the business and who you would be working with and for.
• Culture fit is such an important part when looking for a job, so make sure you let your personality shine through. Don’t be afraid to answer questions about your hobbies or interests – often talking about non-work-related topics can help you relax and settle into the interview.
• Remember that the interview isn’t just for them to evaluate you. It gives you the opportunity to evaluate them as well and gain a solid idea of the company and team.
After the interview
• Call your consultant to let them know your feedback from the interview.
• If you have the details of the hiring manager or interviewee, follow up with a thank you note.
If you’re still not sure, Tiger also offers training and coaching services. If you would like training on your interviewing technique, please get in touch.