Important Tips for a Job Interview
Do Some Background Research
Just like it always helps to research before creating any plan, you must prepare well for the interview. It includes knowing about the company and the industry too. You may be asked about your perception of the company, the industry, and even competitors. Based on your educational qualifications/experience, you may also be asked about your growth plans in the industry and the company.
Therefore, you must know about the mission and vision of the company and the history too. It will help you to have a background and the heritage of the company. It will help you in preparing for the interview as well as understanding the nature of questions that could be asked during the interview. You can also finalise any questions for the interviewer and in deciding about joining the company.
Practise Your Responses Beforehand
The interviewer will mostly start the interview by asking the obvious – Tell me something about yourself. While you may feel it could be the most straightforward question during the interview, but you must prepare for this one too. You need to dig into your work experience along with your strengths and map both of them.
During the interview, you need to communicate the value that you will bring to the organisation. It requires practising the possible questions that could be asked. Based on your profile, you can get a list of the possible questions along with a guideline for answering them, and going through them once before the interview will help you to brush up your knowledge and excel during the interview.
Understand the JD
Before going for the interview, you must have a look at the job description. It is one activity that most of us forget to do. However, it is vital as it provides an overview of the profile that is required by the organisation. Once you understand the job description, you can easily map your skills against the requirements of the organisation.
The job description details which skills from your experience will be needed for the position you are applying to. It will also help you to prepare accordingly. You may have worked on some of the skills long ago, and the job description can help you to brush up those skills.
Dress Up for the Interview
It is essential to dress appropriately for the interview. For this, you must know whether the company sticks to a strict formal attire or they are also tolerable with casual attire. But it always helps to go to the interview in formal attire.
Men may wear a formal light-coloured full sleeve short and matching trousers. You may wear a tie along with a suit if you feel like and based on the profile. The shoes must be black or brown. Cologne and body spray should be sparingly used.
Women may choose Indian attire or western formals. However, the colours must be conservative and not too flashy. High heels must be avoided, and heavy cosmetics and jewellery are a strict no-no unless it is for a modelling assignment.
Ensure a Proper Environment for Online Interviews
Your preparation for an online interview should be the same as a face-to-face one. Due to the social distancing measures in place, and most people working from home, interviews over video conferencing is the new norm. It requires you to have the same level of preparation. You must also dress professionally for the interview.
Additionally, you must always take care that you use your laptop or desktop for the interview. Undertaking the interview using your smartphone can be a cumbersome affair. You must also ensure that you have a high-speed broadband or mobile internet connectivity, else it would be a problem during the interview. Also, ensure that you are at a secluded place with minimum background noise.
Make Ready Examples
You have put down some examples of excellent performance in your previous jobs in your resume. Why had you done that? It is to prove that your abilities are better than most others in the industry. During the interview, it will be in your interest to showcase your skills with suitable examples from your current activities.
When you are asked questions about your skills and activities undertaken in your previous jobs, the interviewer is trying to gauge your abilities and level of expertise attained over the years. The situation arises when the interviewer is trying to assess your skills and the level of skills the position requires. In such a scenario, it will always help if you provide suitable examples about how you excelled in the various activities in your previous jobs, you would have easily scored over your competition.
List Out Few Questions For The Interviewer
Most interviewees do not want to offend the interviewers by questioning them. On the contrary, it happens to be a negative point for them. It has been pointed out by recruiters that they expect the interviewees to be inquisitive during the interview and look for more information about the organisations, its growth plans in the future, and the position on offer.
Asking intelligent questions will ensure that the interviewer will have faith that you are genuinely interested in the position. On the other hand, you can also gather suitable insights to various queries you may have in your mind about the company and the position. It is where your background research about the company could come handy. If you still could not find out any suitable questions to ask during the interview, there are numerous blogs and articles on the generic questions you can ask during the interview.
Have a Ready List Of References
This request ideally comes from the Human Resources team. Still, the interviewer may directly ask for a list of references from you. You can have them in handy and present the list to the organisation. The references act like referees, who the HR team can connect with to gather more information about the candidate. It can also happen that the list of references may not be with you then, and you may request them to provide some more time. You can utilise this time to be in touch with your ex-colleagues and enquire whether they would be fine to be your reference.
Make a Great First Impression
Studies show that the interviewer usually has an overview of the candidate during the first few minutes of the interview. It is the reason that dressing correctly for the interview helps. Do remember that the possible employer may be noticing you right from the point you enter their reception area. It is essential to be polite with every employee of the organisation you encounter during the process.
It is also essential to dress appropriately for the interview as dressing up professionally will provide that added advantage of having an initial good impression about the candidate. Moreover, the first few questions must be answered confidently, and preparing with the obvious few questions helps in making that great first impression. An excellent first impression goes a long way in ensuring a new job.
Always Connect Your Responses to Your Skills
You must remember that at all times, the interviewer is gauging your skill levels against the position on offer. This is the reason you must give it your best shot when talking about your skills and strengths. Always answer the queries by connecting your relevant skills. Remember that communication is a combination of verbal as well as non-verbal skills or body language. Do not let your body language betray you during the interview.
Not only must you focus on your skills when you are asked about your strengths, but you must provide examples of your skill levels throughout the interview process. The more the interviewer is ascertained about your skills, the more are your chances to crack the interview.
Few Essential Guidelines to Make the Interview A Successful One
Punctuality is a virtue liked by everyone. And more so when you are being interviewed for a new position. You must not waste your time dressing up as you never know about the traffic condition in the city. You may be stuck in traffic; hence it is better if you start quite early. Instead of taking public transport, you can also hire a cab to reach the destination faster.
It becomes more important to be punctual when you have an online interview. You must arrange the connectivity and turn on your laptop or computer at least fifteen minutes before the scheduled time. Ensure that all connections, including the audio and video, are working.
Sending a Thank You After The Interview
The connection does not stop just after the interview. While you may be sure that the organisation may still be interviewing other candidates, it helps to send out a thanking note to the Human Resource team. And if you have the contact co-ordinates of the interviewer, then to him too. If you had noted down some points from the interview, you could include them in your thanking email.
You must send out the email latest by the very next day showing gratitude for the interview along with an overview of the discussion. However, you must give the interviewer some space and should not pester for updates frequently.
Before signing off with the interview, you can request the interviewer for a business card. It helps to be in touch for further rounds in the future. Ideally, you must contact your point of contact in the Human Resources department within the next three to four working days for an update. Ideally, they will inform you about the next steps or may say that they are yet to finish the selection process.
You would need to revert again after a few more days. Following up also shows your interest in the position and will be looked at positively. However, if even after two to three follow-ups, you do not receive feedback, then it is best to move forward knowing that the opportunity may have been filled up.
Use Appropriate Tone
You must use the appropriate tone for the interview. You must not sound overtly cocky and should not come out as being overconfident. Your attitude throughout the entire interview process is essential for your candidature. Any fall in the levels of professionalism on your part can lead to cancellation of your candidature.
Using colloquial language must be avoided at all stages. Also, there must not be any untoward reference to age, sex, caste, creed, race, or religion. Any such references will have a negative effect on the entire process. Also, it is essential to sound like a professional, but your level of familiarity with the interviewer should not cross a set threshold.
Bonus Tip: Conduct All Essential Checks For Online Interviews
Preparation for an online interview is a different ballgame. Apart from being at your best, you must also ensure that the devices you use are also at their best. If you are using your mobile phone, ensure that it is charged fully. And do take care that the mobile has appropriate connectivity to prevent any untoward incident of having to postpone the meeting due to no connection.
If you are using your computer or laptop, make sure you don’t lose power, or the laptop is fully charged to prevent any disconnection if there is a power cut. The broadband connection must also be of high-quality for the interview to pass smoothly.
It is Important for You To Keep Abreast with Some of the Most Important Activities & Projects You had Undertaken!
You must prepare for the initial ice-cutting questions, and knowing about the company and the industry as a whole can provide you with some brownie points. Based on your profile, you must prepare yourself for the possible questions that could be coming your way. There are several platforms that can help you to do some preparation for the interview. You must also recall some of the important activities and projects you had undertaken to take them as examples during the interview!