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Top tips for an interview

When applying for jobs interviews can seem like a daunting task but they can be good ways to gain experience and knowledge. Even if you are not successful you would have still gained something from attending. We have put together some tips for you to give you as just as good a chance as all the other candidates the employer may have seen or be seeing.

If you have made it to the interview stage it means the employer is interested in you and wanted to get to know more about you to see if you are suitable for the role.

Pre interview tips

  • Make sure you have done your research of the job role and the employer – When you attend your interview it is good to show you have paid an interest in the company and what they do, this knowledge may also help with some questions they have.
  • Choose your outfit the night before – Prepare what you want to wear the night before so the day of your interview you are not stressing about what to wear and can have a calm build up to the interview.
  • Prepare for standard questions – Make sure you are ready for the ‘basic’ interview questions, put together a script and develop your answers, check you are ready for all of these.
  • Put together some questions for the interviewer- What would you like to know about them? Show an interest in their company, find out what they can do for you in terms of helping you develop, what do they expect from you? Asking these sort of questions will help you uncover if the role is really for you, if it is then great, if not this gives you an opportunity to withdraw.
  • Anticipate any concerns they may have – If there is anything missing from your CV that they may have asked for, or if you lack some experience, reassure them about what you can or will do or how other experiences could be relevant.
  • Plan your journey – Find out what route is best for you to take and how long it will take you to get there. Take in to account traffic and roadworks and if these will effect you. Look at parking, will you need to walk a distance or pay?

During the interview

  • Make the best impression possible- when you arrive, a firm handshake, an enthusiastic welcome and a lot of energy is a good start to make. The interviewer may have been holding interviews all day and be tired by now so making sure you stand out and that they remember you is important while bringing some life into the room.
  • Tell them your key selling points – Get to the point, tell them why you are good for the job, what you have to offer and what sets you apart from all the rest.
  • Talk about what you have done and achieved- don’t wait for them to ask you about a qualification you have or something amazing you have done as they may not ask you about everything. Tell them.
  • Body language – Your body language can often say more than your mouth is, have a firm handshake, be involved in the conversation, sit straight, be involved, show them you are interested.
  • Bring a copy of your CV – Save time if the interviewer doesn’t have a copy and wants to get one.
  • Take your time to answer questions – There is nothing wrong with taking a few minutes to prepare your answer, just explain to the interviewer that you would like to think about the question and when you’re ready, answer.

After the interview

  • Follow up email – If you don’t think that during your interview you managed to get your point across or sold your self short, send them an email explaining that you feel the job would suitable for you because… you would be suitable for the job because… Anything you missed out just explain.
  • Don’t give up- even if you were not successful you have gained experience from this process, you can be more prepared and ready for the next one.
  • Ask for feed back – If you are unsuccessful ask why, you will often get a telephone call from the employer and they will be able to tell you what was missing or how you could improve. It is all a learning curve.
  • Withdraw if it is not for you – If after your interview you do not feel the job is right for you, let them know, you are allowed to change your mind.