It is our job at RG Recruitment to ensure you feel ready and confident for an upcoming interview.
Please call us any time on 0330 0020 555 if you have any questions and feel you need additional help to prepare for your interview.
How did you get this far?
Well done on getting your interview - now consider how you got here. You applied for a job or a Consultant at RG Recruitment contacted you. You made a choice to apply for this job after some careful consideration about what the opportunity would mean for the next phase of your career. You took the time to write a CV that you felt represented you the best. You have invested a lot of time in getting this far. Then having reviewed your application, our client has decided they want to meet you.
The reality is that you have already done very well to get to this stage. You now owe it to yourself to do the best you can in the interview.
Why are you being interviewed?
The Hiring Manager likes what they see. However, this is now where the preparation begins. Always remember that every interviewer will be thinking:
- Can you do the job?
- Are you going to work hard and make the job a success?
- Will you fit in?
- Are you manageable?
- Are you better than the other candidates?
Before the Interview
Research, Research, Research. Read as much information about the company and the position as possible. Use the company’s website as a starting point and see what recent updates they may have shared online, particularly on sites such as LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. Latest news articles and blogs will be particularly relevant.
Ensure you understand:
- What the company’s core products / services are?
- How big are they?
- Who are their main competitors and how do they compare to them?
- Have there been updates, events or changes within the company recently?
Research your interviewers on LinkedIn to learn about them before the interview. Remember they will be notified that you viewed them (unless you amend your privacy), which means they will probably look at you in return. Make sure your own LinkedIn profile is up to date and consistent with your CV.
So much of our lives is now available online, so ensure that all information that is accessible publicly e.g. Facebook, Twitter, is something you are happy to share.
Read the job description thoroughly. Make a note of each of the duties listed and consider the areas in which you have relevant experience. What projects can you talk about that demonstrate you have the relevant experience and can demonstrate these duties. How can you demonstrate that you have extensive experience instead of a basic knowledge? Ask us anything about the job description that is unclear or ambiguous.
Are there any questions you are dreading being asked? If so, why are you dreading them? The best thing to do here is to assume that you will be asked them. What will your response be? Talk to us if you are worried- we can coach you through it.
After the Interview
Remember you may be watched from the window as you leave the building. Save the jumping for joy until you are out of sight.
Call us on 0330 0020 555 while everything is still fresh in your mind, to tell us how it went. We will then pass on your feedback to the interviewers; and it will reflect well on you if we can do this promptly, without us having to chase you for your feedback.
Set a Great First Impression
Do not be late! Allow plenty of time to get to the interview. Ensure you know exactly where you have to go and exactly whom you should ask for. Make sure that you have every last detail on location, time and date. If you are running late, please call us at the earliest possible opportunity so that we can inform the interviewer. It is better to arrive early and wait before you go in than to arrive late.
Do not be excessively early! If you arrive an hour before your interview take yourself for a walk around the area. You should report in at the reception exactly 15 minutes before your interview is due to start.
Dress appropriately. Ask us about the company’s dress code to ensure you neither underdress or overdress. It is preferable to wear clothes you are confident in i.e. not necessarily ones bought for the interview. Remember that you only get one chance to make a first impression, so do not take anything you do not need (especially carrier bags!).
Be composed, well-mannered, and do not get impatient if you have to wait. Smile, shake hands firmly, and remember the names of the people you meet.
Pay attention to your body language and posture. Maintain regular eye contact, smile warmly, sit upright and keep hands still. Avoid fiddling with your hair, covering your mouth with your hands and staring out of windows – easy mistakes to make if you are feeling nervous.
- If you have a mobile phone – turn it off. Keep it in your pocket or even better the car.
- Take a copy of your CV, notepad and Pen.
If you should be asked to complete an application form, do so neatly and thoroughly, ensuring it tallies with your CV. If you are unsure of how to answer any part, then ask. If you are going to have an official test of any sort, we will have made every effort to prepare you in advance.
Never speak badly of a former employer. State your reason for leaving your last role(s) calmly, briefly and truthfully. Hopefully you left / are leaving you last role(s) under positive circumstances; but if this is not the case, consider ways in which you can make it sound positive while remaining honest.
Try to avoid discussing salary details, unless you are asked directly. Under normal circumstances we will have told you the package on offer. As a rule, RG Recruitment will have discussed with you the salary at which we submitted your application at the beginning of the process. Do not overinflate that original amount as the interviewer will know what you were submitted at. It is our job to fine tune salary offers (and it’s in our interest to obtain the maximum remuneration for you).
At the end of the interview, thank the interviewers for their time and courtesy and shake their hands warmly. If you are interested in the job, say so.
Questions You May be Asked
Whether this is more of a general competency-based interview or a highly structured technical discussion, the following advice is important to keep in the back of your mind at all times.
- Listen carefully to all questions.
- Understand exactly what is asked before answering – if you are unsure, ask for clarification.
- Give yourself time to think before answering.
- Answer precisely and to the point – do not waffle.
Potential Questions – How Might You Answer These?
- Why do you want this job? (this is a key question because the manager will be looking for someone who wants this specific position, not just something that will get your foot in the door or just pay the bills while you wait for something better!)
- Why are you looking for a new job? (remember: if you give a vague answer you will not be convincing)
- What elements of your current job do you find most satisfying?
- What frustrates you at work?
- What particular strengths can you bring to this company?
- What attracts you to this company? What do you know about this company?
- Describe a situation that illustrates your communication / teamwork and management skills?
- Describe a particular problem you faced and how you resolved it? (make sure you use the word “I” as much as possible, not “we”. The interviewer wants to know what you are capable of, so make sure you can substantiate your answers)
- Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
- How would your colleagues describe you?
- What would your colleagues want to change about you?
- What do you consider to be your weaknesses?
- How would you tackle a situation such as….?
- How would you help to develop your team?
- How do you respond to change?
- How do you see your career developing?
- Tell me more about yourself? (a poor question, but it often gets asked. Don’t ramble on. If it seems too broad to answer, ask the interviewer to clarify the areas on which they would want you to focus your answer)
- Describe your career to date / talk us through your CV?
- How do you feel about your career progression so far?
- What achievements are you most proud of in your career to date?
- What has been your proudest achievement in the last 12 months?
- What do you enjoy doing when you are not working?
Asking Your Own Questions - Be Interested
Remember, not only are the company interviewing you, you are also interviewing them.
A key part of any interview is usually towards the end, when you are asked: “Do you have any questions?” (hopefully, you will be given this opportunity). There is nothing wrong with saying “No thank you, you’ve covered everything”, but it shows initiative and interest in the position if you can ask something that portrays you in a positive way. It is a good idea to think about this in advance. If you so wish, you can write a pre-prepared list which you can put on the desk and run through. Be aware if your questions were already answered during the interview, we would advice not to ask them, and also as a rule of thumb if the question is something you can easily find out yourself we probably would not ask. Good questions include:
- Why has the vacancy arisen?
- What happened to the previous job holder?
- What is the company’s management structure and management style?
- How are targets set and how is performance measures?
- What can I expect to be working on during my first month?
- Could you tell me more about the team structure?
- What opportunities are there for training and development?
- What are the companies long and short-term objectives?
- Are there any structural or organisational changes in the pipeline?
- What are the key issues the company is now facing?
- When would I be expected to start work?
- How soon will you make your selection?
Closing the Meeting
Finish the interview by saying something to the effect of: “I am very interested in this position with this company. I would like to ask if you have any concerns at all surrounding my ability or suitability to do this job, so that I can alleviate those concerns before I leave today”
The more interested you sound to them, the more interested they will be in you.
As soon as possible after the interview please contact RG Recruitment on 0330 0020 555 with your feedback. This will enable us to progress your application and take it to the next stage. In turn, we will give you the company’s feedback as soon as this is obtained.