How to Prepare for a Face to Face Interview

Last week we discussed the different approaches companies may take when assessing the suitability of candidates for a position with them.  For the candidate, preparation is really important and in these days of the internet there is no excuse not to do your homework.  So before your interview these are some steps you can take:

  • Research the company (website, news, LinkedIn). See if you can find some recent information about them in the press.  You may get a chance to reference this information in the interview
  • Read and re-read the job description
  • Think about things you have done in your current or a past role which can provide real life examples of your skills. This will make it more meaningful
  • Think about the questions you might be asked and prepare answers – there will be information on this in my next article. Or you can use the internet.
  • Go armed with questions you can ask. Ideally not just how much will you get paid or what is the holiday allowance?  You may like to ask the interviewer what they enjoy about working for the Company.  You could ask about the culture of the company or the goals for the coming year.
  • Check the address of the Company; make sure you have the right site, if there is more than one.
  • On the day:
    • Dress appropriately – even if there is a casual dress code, remember first impressions really count. My advice is be smart – a suit, dress etc
    • Allow time for traffic and delays; arriving late does not create a good first impression
    • Make sure you are clear on the name of the person or persons who will be interviewing you
    • Take a notepad and pen to jot down information you are given or to remind you to ask a question when you are given the opportunity

And finally:

  • be yourself, the company wants to see the person they may be taking on
  • don’t rush to answer a question. It is quite acceptable to take a minute or two to reflect, often just starting the reply with something like “that is an interesting question…..” will give you a moment’s breathe
  • if you are offered and accept a drink, try not to spill it – although it can make for a memorable interview
  • be professional – shake hands
  • don’t be afraid to ask the company what the next steps will be or when you might expect to hear from them
  • follow up after the interview with an email thanking the company for their time

Good luck with your preparation for the interview.

Next week we will look at what types of questions you might be asked in an interview.

Hilary BackwellTime2Time HR
Time2Time HR Ltd
M: 0771 865 7175
T:  01635 600305



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