Best Practices for Job Interviews

Going on job interviews can be stressful and even intimidating in the beginning of your career search. Being properly prepared can make a world of difference. There are many ways to impress potential employers, let’s look at a few of them.

Match Your Resume to the Job Post

When you find a job, you want to apply for you should review the qualifications and requirements. Make a list of the job skills that you have that match with the job description. If those skills are not already on your resume you want to add them. This will help match your resume to the qualifications when the recruiter is going through the top candidates to interview.

Research the Company

Now that you have secured an interview you want to be prepared to sit down with the hiring manager. To do so you will need to know as much as possible about the company and position you are applying for. This is important because you want to have prepared answers for questions like “what interested you in our company?”  or “what do you know about our company?” You can find information on the about us page on the company site. Here you will also find their mission statement which can help to assess if the company has similar goals to your own.

Practice and Dress the Part

You want to be fully prepared for this interview. And you know what they say, practice makes perfect. Look up common interview questions and practice what answers you will give for each. This can be helpful to do with a friend or family member to get a more realistic feel.

You also want to choose the right outfit to wear for your interview. Rule of thumb is to always go business professional unless the interviewer tells you otherwise. This means for men a suit and tie and for women a pants or skirt suit is fine. You want to avoid harsh or bright colors as well to keep the attention on your skills and how well you communicate with the interviewer. Furthermore, it can be a good practice to avoid wearing perfume or cologne that day. The reason being that you do not want to wear a scent that may offend the interviewer and leave a negative impression.

Come Prepared and Ask Questions

It is important to come prepared to an interview. This should include copies of your resume, a list of references, something to write on and with, a list of questions to ask and a portfolio if applicable. Additionally, you should know what not to bring as well such as your cellphone (turn ringer off), chewing gum, or coffee.

The interview is almost concluded, one of the last things an interviewer will usually ask is “do you have any questions?” It is crucial that you ask questions. When you fail to ask questions, it gives the interviewers the idea that you are not very interested in the company or the position. You want to be attentive and ask a two or three good questions. This is also helpful to you so that you know more about the job.  

Send a Thank You Email

This is the one step many fail to do. Which is why, sending a thank you can really make you stand out. You want to keep this email short and sweet. Thank the interviewer for their time interviewing you and then restate why you are interested in the job and then close with one last thank you and your signature.

Following these steps will help you be prepared for the interview process. The goal is to be the best candidate for the position and taking these steps will make you stand out.

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