The Building Talent team offer some guidance for securing your dream role.

Research the Company

‘Tell me why you want to work for us’ or ‘Tell me what you know about us?’

Imagine being faced with these questions having done no research whatsoever.  I’ve mentioned first impressions previously, and this is certainly one that you don’t want to make.  Do your homework and research the company.  You can do this in a number of ways:

Study the company website:

  • What is their story
  • What are their values
  • What sectors or projects do they work on
  • What testimonials do they have
  • What are their values – do they align with yours
  • Who are the key members of staff
  • Do they share their growth plans or what they’re looking to achieve

Research your Interviewer(s)

Make sure that you know who will be interviewing you and do your research on them.  Take a look at their LinkedIn page.  This will give you a number of insights:

  • An understanding of how long they’ve been with the company and their career path. Is this similar to your journey and can you see them as being a mentor to help you get to where they are and beyond?
  • Do you have any mutual connections? This can form a topic of conversation and help to build rapport
  • What projects have they worked on? Do you know much about those projects?  Can you research them so you have some common ground to talk about and use this to build a rapport during the interview?
  • Who did they work for previously? Find out what made them join this company and ask why they would work for this one over previous companies

Interview Format

Do you know what you’re walking into?  Is it a relaxed chat over a coffee or a formal panel interview?  Knowing the answer to this question is key and will ensure that you prepare appropriately.  The common types of interview are:

  • An informal interview – a getting to know each other and more of a ‘chat’
  • A competency-based interview – will you need to give lots of specific examples of where you’ve demonstrated the skills and experience required
  • A panel interview – will you be faced with multiple interviewers asking different styles of questions
  • A skills test – do you need to be prepared for the fact that they will practically test your skills in some way

Understand the job description

Throughout the interview, you will be asked a range of questions that demonstrate your ability to do the job – sounds simple right?  To make things even easier, they will tell you what these are in advance – it’s all in the job description.

It’s therefore vital that you:

  • Prepare answers that address each point listed
  • Give practical examples of when you’ve delivered each point effectively
  • If you haven’t had experience in any of the points, then be honest about this but say what you would do or give examples of what you’ve seen someone else do that you would look to replicate
  • Don’t be afraid to drop in the odd example of what didn’t work well – but make sure that you demonstrate what you’ve learnt from this and what you would do differently next time
  • Give examples of things that you’ve done/do that represent the company values (will also show that you’ve done your research)
  • Ask what they’re looking for beyond the job description – what kind of person or character are they after

Take examples of your work with you

Now this might not be relevant for all role types, but if it’s applicable, then be sure to take examples of your work with you.

  • This gives you an opportunity to demonstrate your practical skills
  • It allows you to talk through and elaborate on any work that you’re particularly proud of
  • Gives you an opportunity to take the lead in the conversation and demonstrate confidence and passion
  • Gives the interviewers opportunities to ask questions throughout and form a more engaging conversation

By preparing thoroughly, you will undertake a more confident and engaging interview which will allow your skills, abilities and personality to shine through.

Remember to be honest and open, friendly and have an engaging two-way conversation.

Now that you’re prepared, check out some further hints and tips that will give you the best chances of being successful.

If you’d prefer to talk to someone with vast experience of preparing job seekers of all levels for job interviews, then please reach out to Steve and he’ll be happy to talk you through this.

M: +61 (0)403 915522
E: [email protected]

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