Recruitment interview hints and tips, advice and support

Candidate Zone

Read our tips and advice to finding your perfect job

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Interview hints and tips

The job market is extremely competitive – you’re fortunate enough to get the interview, now it’s about making sure you secure the job offer over the competition. You need to sell yourself and the first 30 seconds of a job interview are the most important! Follow these simple tips to ensure you impress on the day!

Initial impact

From the minute you walk into the building remember you may bump into anyone, including the CEO so ensure you smile and maintain good eye contact from the start (you never know whose opinion may be considered). On the way to the interview room try to make small talk, it can help build rapport before the interview begins.

We all know what poor preparation leads to

It may sound obvious but read your CV prior to your interview; familiarise yourself with your entire career history and key achievements. More and more interviews are now competency based so have a look at our guide to tackling competency based interviewing and start practicing.

Look the part and dress to impress (first impressions are key).

Get clued up!

Read the job specification in detail (highlighting the key competencies).

Read the interview confirmation thoroughly – you don’t want to get to the interview and realise you were meant to prepare a presentation. Do you know where the office is based? If not, it’s worth doing a dummy run if possible to make sure you are not late! Social media tools are great now for researching your interviewers background (you may find you have similar connections / backgrounds on linked in). Look at the company website and any literature you can find online.

Find and harness your inner belief

Remember your body language speaks volumes about your character and current state of mind. Don’t sit in the interview with your arms folded, leaning back on your chair too relaxed or fidget. Sit upright and try to maintain good eye contact. Develop rapport by showing energy, a sense of humour, smile and be confident. Most importantly remember to be positive about your career history, past managers, teams etc. The interviewer is going to be thinking what it’s like to work with you, so the last thing they will want to hear is you talking negatively about your past boss.

An interview is a two-way process

If you are uncertain about the meaning of a particular question, ask for clarification. Prepare at least five questions to ask the interviewer – these could be questions about the job, culture, goals for the business, even questions about the interviewer’s career / main challenges within the business. However, avoid questions about salary. Although we all go to work to earn a salary, at interview it’s all about your enthusiasm to join the business - not just show me the money!

Don’t be shy to close

Remember to follow up after every interview – sending a ‘thank you’ email or letter, saying how much you enjoyed meeting with them is a great opportunity for you to confirm again your interest and to detail the key skills you can bring to the business and role.