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Job Interview Checklist – How To Nail Your Next Job Interview

Before the Interview

Dress to impress

Dressing smartly and being punctual will give you the opportunity to relax into the environment. A good, firm handshake is vital. Maintain good eye contact and be cheerful. All these factors help create a positive first impression.

PMA- Positive mental attitude

You have earned this interview so the client is obviously eager to meet you; don’t be afraid to talk about your strengths. If you have researched and prepared thoroughly you will be able to communicate why you are attracted to the role, the company and why you feel you are suitable for the position.

Research is key

Do your research, look at the company website and check their annual report and press releases. Learn as much as possible about the position from the job description.

Who are you meeting

Find out about the interviewer/client from the consultancy that has put you forward for the role, talk to any other business contacts that may be able to advise you.

Check yourself out first!

Review your CV, think through your career history and anticipate the questions you will be asked and prepare some answers. Clients are impressed with candidates who are prepared for their interview. Rehearse with a friend or colleague if necessary.

What do they want

List what you think the prospective employer will want from the ideal candidate and consider whether this is you. Summarise your involvement in relevant projects associated with your previous employment so when asked you are able to give fluent comprehensive answers to the interviewer.

Are you their perfect candidate?

Consider your key strengths, weaknesses and motivations for leaving your current role and desire to join the new employer. Prepare to be asked about them.

It’s quiz time!

Prepare some quick questions to ask them – this demonstrates your interest in them and will help you decide if this is the right move for you.

Any Concerns?

Remember this may be the last opportunity you will get to explore and concerns or worries you have about the new role directly with the client prior to being offered a role, later stages of the interview process may be carried out with other company employees rather than the client themselves.

Prepare, prepare, prepare

Prepared candidates impress clients!

During the Interview

They want you

Be positive about yourself – you have got this far so you know they are interested in you but do not waffle. Short concise responses are often better than confused answers.

Be aware of the balance between confidence and arrogance!

Be confident but not overly confident or arrogant.

Who are they?

Be well-informed about the company, its record and achievements, about the job and why you want it.

You are the right person for the job

Remember throughout the interview you will need to demonstrate to the interviewer you are technically qualified to do the job and motivated to get the job done well – you’re positive answers should reflect this ethos. They will also be assessing whether you will fit in with the company’s organisational structure and the team in which you will work.

Critical but loyal

Whatever your reason for leaving a current role avoid, where possible, open criticism of your current employer as this will only cause clients to question your loyalty and consider whether you will show the same level of loyalty to them.

Are you interested?

Prepare questions to ask them about the role and company as this will demonstrate your interest in the role.

Typical Interview Questions

Why do you want this job?

Think carefully about this question. Stress the positive aspects which have attracted you to applying for this position.

What qualities do you think will be required for this job?

Their advertisement for the job may help you a little bit, but you should also think of the other qualities that may be required. These may include leadership ability, supervisory skills, communication skills, interpersonal skills, problem solving, analytical skills, etc.

What can you contribute?

This is your chance to shine. Tell them about your achievements in your previous position(s) which are relevant to the new position you are applying for.

Why do you want to work for this company?

Emphasise the positive reasons why you want to join their company, but avoid aspects such as more money or shorter hours. These would not endear you to a prospective employer.

What do you know about this company?

This is your chance to impress the interviewer with your knowledge of their company. Give them a rundown of their products/services, sales figures, news, company figures, customers, etc.

What interests you about our product/service?

Again, your research into the company should aid you in answering this question.

What can we (the new company) offer that your previous company cannot offer?

Tread carefully here! Again do not mention money. Stress opportunities for personal growth, new challenges, etc.

After the Interview

How did it go?

After the interview, consider the areas you feel went well and those that you felt you needed to work on – then actually work on them! If there are knowledge or experience gaps missing then this may be an ideal chance to consider them and work out whether you can fill in the gaps from within your current role to improve your chances next time.

Anything you are they missed?

Also you need to call either the consultancy or the interviewer directly for feedback and thank them for their time. This may be the appropriate time to discuss any areas that need development as they often they become less of an issue through discussion at this stage.

OK not this time, what about next time?

If you are not successful in your job application, consider telephoning the person who interviewed you to get feedback why you were not selected. This may not be appropriate depending on the client but if you discuss this with the consultancy they are in the best position to advise you further.

Chin up! – As a final note, please remember that not every position is the right one for you so keep your chin up and you are sure to find the role that is right for you!

If you want any further interview advice feel free to call us!

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