Preparing for an employment interview? The prospect of going for an important job interview can be daunting. How to give the right impression in such a short amount of time. How to stand out from the crowd. How to end on a good note. We have compiled a short list of top tips for acing the interview for the job that you have always wanted.
There is no shame in taking a sizable amount of time to prepare for an employment interview. One of the worst experiences for an interviewer is to interview a candidate who hasn’t prepared properly. Amongst a number of things, it is advisable to thoroughly research the company and its core team members if possible, including any recent developments and news which may give you something specific to discuss in the interview. It’s always worth having a couple of intelligent questions ready, in case you are invited to ask them. But be careful not to make the interviewer feel uncomfortable or unduly interrogated in the process. Don’t be scared to ask the company in advance about the interview format, the dress code, and any necessary preparation that they would like you to do. Asking some questions before the interview might help you to stand out from the other interviewees and show that you are conscientious.
Any interviewer can accept where a candidate has weaknesses (no candidate is ever perfect) and failings in the past, so long as those things are recognised and learned from. The worst thing that an interviewer wants to hear is an inconsistency or blatant lie to cover something up. Furthermore you will feel more confident in the interview if you simply rely on being completely open and honest, which may in itself help your job prospects. It’s worth remembering that the employment that you are seeking may last for a long time and occupy a considerable amount of your life, so crowbarring your way in to something based on misinformation could simply be shooting yourself in the foot.
Nobody wants to go through a five-page CV or read an entire occupational history that includes doing weekends at WH Smith back in 1992. Help the interviewer by focussing on only the things that matter most, but be prepared to talk in some detail about any occupation or experience that is most relevant to your prospective job. It is also worth being considerate about the amount of entrepreneurialism that you want to portray. Obviously, a prospective employer wants someone who can be independent and think on their feet, but many employers will be wary of employing a jack of all trades and master of none, especially if they think that you may only hang around for six months and leave when you get bored.
Make sure you know exactly where you need to go so that you don’t need to phone the employer when you are nearby and ask for directions. Leave plenty of time to get there without any stress on the journey as you will have enough to worry about already. If you get to your destination early, it’s worth considering going to a coffee shop nearby to relax and prepare your mind a little, until five minutes before the interview. Whereas most employers will not be impressed with lateness, they may also think negatively of a candidate who turns up half an hour early and announces their arrival as if to expect to begin the interview earlier than planned.
A nice touch after an interview is to email the interviewer when you’re on your way home or later in the day to say thanks for their time in the interview and it was a pleasure to meet them. Not only might it help the interviewer to remember you from possibly a day of numerous different interviews, but the response you receive back might give you some early indication of how well the interview went and how quickly you might find out if you have got the job.
If you are interested in seeing a standard employment contract to familiarise yourself with possible terms of employment for a prospective job, why not take a look at our employment contract template.
We are the UK's most popular vendor of template legal agreements, trusted by thousands of businesses every year.
Our templates are the cheapest of any available and, with the help of a leading UK law firm, the best quality too! Learn more here.