To celebrate National Careers Week #NCW2021 read our top tips from business experts on how to nail your first interview.
Be prepared for the question, “What do you know about us?” or “Why do you want to work for us?”
Research both the company and the wider industry. You should be able to find out information about the company’s history, mission and values, staff, culture and recent successes on their website.
If they have a blog and social media presence, that can also be a useful place to look.
Be on time.
If your interview is taking place in an unknown area, practise your route to guarantee you don’t get lost. The last thing you want is to be late and arrive flustered!
Try to stay calm and relaxed.
If you need to take a moment to think about an answer, explain that to your interviewers rather than start your answer with “um…”
Know your CV.
Your interviewer will prepare their questions based on the information you provided on your CV or application.
Remember to be positive about your skills and experiences.
Research common job interview questions and practise your answers. This will help you feel more relaxed going into the interview.
The more familiar interviewing feels to you, the more relaxed you will feel. Meet with mentors, colleagues and friends for mock interviews to gain confidence in answering routine interview questions.
If you are stuck on how to answer a question, don’t be afraid to stop and think before answering. Take a sip of water if you need to.
Plan your outfit.
Make sure your clothes are smart but comfortable. It is always better to be too smart than too casual. If you have purchased a new outfit, consider wearing it before your interview to make sure you feel comfortable.
Follow up after the interview.
This should be a short email within 24 hours of your interview to thank the interviewer for their time and to say that you are looking forward to hearing from them.