Interview Guidance

Preparation

Preparation is the key to a successful interview, and it is important to follow the following guidelines:

  • Research the company website, press releases and conduct a google search.
  • Speak to contacts working in the Company / Industry Sector to find out more about the culture, structure etc.
  • Know the role - review the job and person specification. Pick out the key competencies that you feel are important for the role.
  • Be completely familiar with your CV and be prepared to answer questions about any aspect of it.
  • Rehearsal is a crucial part of interview preparation. You should be comfortable discussing every detail of your career to date, facts, key achievements and the particular challenges of each position should be easily and readily recalled.
  • Important to prepare a list of questions, informed by your own research, regarding the role, company and future prospects.
  • Read the national newspapers - keep up to date on current affairs.

The interview itself

  • Remember the interview kicks off the moment you walk in the door - portray the right impression. It is not uncommon for the interviewer to ask a secretary or receptionist for their first impression.
  • You should inspire confidence, reliability and commitment at all times throughout the interview.
  • Listen to the questions you are asked - always give examples based on your previous experience (Competency based interviews). Try and keep it based on what ‘I did' as opposed to what ‘I would' do.
  • Don't guess an answer - if you are unsure of the question, seek clarification.
  • Be factual and honest about your strengths and weaknesses.
  • Ask appropriate questions to the interviewer(s) - remember you need information to ensure the position is right for you.
  • If you are offered a tour of the office, remember that this is still part of the interview. The interviewer(s) may be assessing your communication skills, attitude etc.
  • It is important to finish the interview on a positive note.