Interview tips

Did you know?
Getting an interview for a job you have applied for is a great achievement, it means they would like to meet you and know about you and yours skills for the job.

Top Tips

  • Call to confirm
  • Do your research
  • Re- read your job description and details
  • Look at the paperwork
  • Dress smartly
  • Do a practice run
  • Practice your responses and answers

Prepare for your interview
The best thing to do is prepare for your interview. This will help you to be ready for the questions an employer may ask you. It also gives you the best chance of doing well in the interview.

You will need to give examples of the skills you mention in your CV or application form. To help you, look at the job description and make a list of the skills that are needed for the job.

Find out as much as you can about the company. This can be done on the internet. By using this information in your interview, you will show the employer that you are serious about the job.

Some of the things you could find out are:

  • Number of employees
  • Locations
  • Products and services
  • Competitors
  • History
  • Company values
  • Mission statement

Asking the interviewer questions will show that you are interested in the company and the role.

Different types of interviews:

  • Telephone interview – often used once applications have been received to confirm details and ask some basic questions. If you are successful, you would be invited for a one-to-one interview
  • One-to-one interview – this is just you and the employer
  • Panel interview - you meet with a number of people from the company who will all ask questions
  • Presentation – you will be given a subject to present to one or more people. Some companies ask you to talk about something random while others will want you to talk about ideas relating to the job you want. To make your presentation as effective as possible, follow these steps:
    • Set out your aims clearly
    • Take enough time to prepare and practice
    • Use a clear, confident speaking voice
    • Practice on a friend or family member and ask them for feedback.

Practicing for your interview
Before your interview, make sure you have a practice talk about:

  • Your skills, giving examples of how you have used them
  • Previous jobs, experiences, duties and responsibilities
  • Your hobbies, interests and activities

Rehearse your answers. Ask a friend or family member or staff member to help if you can. Say your answers out loud, not just in your head.

A good way to practice your interview skills is by booking a mock interview with our employment advisors, you will be able to practice an interview and get valuable feedback that will help you when it comes to the real thing.

After the interview
Once the interviews are finished, the employer will decide who they think is best for the role. They will contact them to offer the role before letting the unsuccessful applicants know.

If you get the job

Congratulations!

What happens if you don’t get the job?
Don’t worry, not everyone will be successful when they apply for a job. Try to think about how you can use the experience to build on your strengths. Also have a think about any areas that you may need to improve on, to help you find the right job.

Feedback
Ask for feedback on your interview. This will help you to build on your skills in these areas ready for your next interview.

Sometimes an employer will be looking for someone with very specific skills, rather than experience. At other times, the role may go to an internal candidate, or to the person the interviewer clicks with best.