What are employers looking for?
This can vary from position to position, but the main qualities sought by the majority of employers are:
A genuine interest in the company and the position
High Performance Standards
Stable work history
Failure to prepare means that you are preparing to fail.
The more information you are armed with, the better your chances are of your interview being a success.
Research the company.
Look through and research the company web site (print off to take to the interview).
Call the companies head office and request company Literature.
Research the market place and competitors.
Prepare at least 10 questions for the client
Create a Reminder Pack – will you be remembered? (Call us on 0208 166 5252 for help with this)
Your understanding of the role
Your relevant experience
Your key attributes as an individual
Take extra copies of your CV
Take a pad and a pen to take notes during the interview.
Plan your journey and arrive at the interview with plenty of time to spare.
a. Start of the Interview:
On first contact/Introduction ensure the following:
A good firm handshake
Good eye contact
Never carry anything in your right hand as this is the hand you will shake with.
Also remember the interview commences as soon as you enter the premises.
Be polite to all staff that you meet. They count too – and may influence a decision in you favour.
b. During the Interview:
An opening company question to you might be:
“what do you know about our company”
Let the interviewer lead the conversation early on, but try to establish or clarify the role and responsibilities early on, this way you can apply previous skills to the position.
Always be factual and concise.
Show confidence and poise.
Keep the attitude of ‘what I can do for the company’ not ‘what can the company do for me’. Sit up straight and maintain a good posture.
Talk about what appeals to you about the company and what you can offer.
Do not discuss salary, holidays, bonuses, retirement etc during the first interview. If the interviewer insists consider a neutral response: ‘I will consider any reasonable offer’ or state your current salary.
Do not make unnecessary derogatory remarks about current or former employers, stay neutral as they may be trying to test you.
c. Closing the Interview:
This is the most important part of the interview.
Find out what the clients concerns/reservation are about you and try to overcome them, through previous knowledge and skills.
Explain to the interviewer that you are interested in the position and ask if there is any reason why he/she would not invite you back for a 2nd interview.
Ask them what the next stage is? (If there is a 2nd interview) Who will be involved in the 2nd Interview?
What is the structure of the 2nd interview? Would you require a presentation?
Summarise why you are interested in the role/why you want the job?
If the client does not commit to informing you, ask them who will be contacting you
During the interview the client will continually be making assessments of your performance. The client will remember the negative factors more than the positives, so you must limit the clients opportunities to criticise your performance.
Points the client will notice:
Poor personal appearance
Weak handshake and poor eye contact
Aggressive, overbearing manner
Poor communication with client
Lack of preparation and research
Not making notes, no paper and pen
Not enough copies of your C.V.
Condemnation of past employers
Lack of enthusiasm for the interview
Lack of career planning, goals and aspirations
Poor understanding and explanation of reasons for leaving
Failure to question the client
Failure to close the interview
Finally enjoy the interview, this is your chance to sell yourself and your skills.