6 job interview tips from a leading digital recruitment agency.

Great news – you’ve secured an interview so you’re only one step away from your dream job. It’s a pretty big step but with the right preparation you can massively increase your chances of being successful. Take a look at our top six job interview tips to make the job yours.

Job interview tips from London, Birmingham, & Manchester based digital recruitment agency.

We’ve been operating in the digital recruitment space for a decade so know a thing or two about recruiting the best talent. We spend a lot of time preparing our candidates for the interview process – getting an interview is an important step but the interview is where preparation beforehand can really pay off. This blog looks at some things to research and work on before the interview itself but we have lots of other hints and tips in our blog section that can be found on this link.

  1. Research the company.

It sounds kind of obvious but anyone that is going to give you a job is going to ask you what you know about the company. This doesn’t mean you need to be able to regurgitate their report and accounts for the last five years but you need to be able to demonstrate some knowledge, interest and have an idea of their strategy and latest developments. With a lot of brands your experience as a customer or user can help here but you may be going for an interview with a company you know little about. Here is a quick rundown of the type of information to research and where you can find it:

  • Company websites are a major source of information and can provide you with corporate history, press releases, downloadable reports and reviews. From this you can research the company’s size, number of employees, office locations, financial information and company history (details of mergers, takeovers and how the company has grown).
  • Familiarise yourself with their products and services and how and where they are distributed, both offline and online. If you are unfamiliar with the brand, visit one of their retail outlets. Can you identify their main competitors and see what sets them apart from their rivals?
  • Research the company on digital media (including social media) to get a sense of their product range, customer reviews and opinions, and their target markets. Also look at their advertising – this will often give a succinct flavour of how they articulate their products, vision, and values to potential customers.
  1. Research the people interviewing you.

It’s always good to put a face to a name so do some research before you meet. With all of your company research, the chances are you will have come across some of the people involved. If not, here are a few ideas to find out as much as you can about the people before the job interview:

  • LinkedIn is your first place to check. If you find the company LinkedIn profile page it will list all employees and you should be able to find the profiles of the people that will be interviewing you. The beauty of LinkedIn is that as well as finding out the basics (how long have they been at the company, where did they work before, etc.) you can see if you are connected to anyone in their network. Knowing someone they know may help, plus it’s a piece of “small talk” you can mention at an opportune moment.
  • Social media is the second-best source of information. Do they have their own Twitter account or do they write blogs? If so, you should be able to get an idea about interests. Check out the trade press for any articles they may have written.
  1. Get to the job interview at least 30 minutes early.

Whether you’re driving or taking public transport, make sure you arrive in plenty of time. You want to avoid being late at all costs, it sets a bad tone for the interview before you have even got in there. It’s better to be sat close by, drinking a coffee for half an hour, than be rushing or stuck in traffic. Make sure you don’t announce yourself until 10 minutes before your appointment – wait in your car or nearby café until it’s time for the interview.

  1. Be pleasant to the receptionist and everyone you meet.

Your behaviour will be analysed from the minute you walk in the building, so demonstrate an interest by reading company literature in the foyer, being friendly to the receptionist, offering a firm handshake, and maintaining regular eye contact.

Be friendly and approachable to anyone you see or who may say hello to you. It’s not unusual for people to be dressed down at work, so whilst you will be suited and booted, it doesn’t necessarily mean your interviewers will be. For instance, in manufacturing companies, senior people are often dressed in clothing appropriate for the factory floor, so don’t assume people’s roles by what they are wearing.

  1. Always accept a drink.

You may not be thirsty but it’s always best to have a glass of water to hand - taking a sip can provide you with a little thinking time before you answer difficult questions. Also, you might not be thirsty at the start of the interview but you will be doing a lot of talking so your throat will dry up as the interview progresses.

  1. You never get a second chance to make a first impression.

As clichés go, this is really accurate. People will remember your interview so it’s vital you get off to a great start. Make sure your mobile phone is switched off. Don’t smoke just before the interview – if you can get by with nicotine gum instead of a cigarette on the morning of the interview, even better. Turn off your phone. Discard any gum (nicotine or otherwise) before you enter the building. Turn off your phone – don’t even leave it on silent. Wear business-like attire, clean shoes, minimal jewellery, and good personal hygiene. If you’re wearing a tie, do up your top button and have the tie fitted correctly. Put your car keys, change, and anything else from your pockets in your bag so you aren’t tempted to fidget with them. Oh, did we say to turn off your phone?

 

Charlie Cowin

Associate Director

Charlie specialises in: HR Advisors, Managers, Directors, HR Business Partners and Talent Acquisition.

07972 563 931
020 7183 7145
charlie.cowin@opiliorecruitment.co.uk

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