Interview Preparation

  

Interview Preparation  

Research

Prior to your interview, spend some time getting to know the company with which you will interview. Sources of information can include: Employment agencies, your local library, Better Business Bureau, Chamber of Commerce, Annual Reports, competitors, employees, personnel departments, etc.

The Company
Learn as much as you can about the company/organization and use the information to demonstrate your knowledge and interest during the interview. Use the Workplace Checklist to get started.

Following are suggested areas to research:

  • Nature of the Business
  • Size of the Company
  • Products
  • Locations
  • Reputation
  • Competition

The Job

  • Duties and responsibilities 
  • Hours required 
  • The climate (fast paced, team oriented, etc.) 
  • Opportunities for advancement

The Interview Situation

  • Name of the interviewer/s and correct pronunciation of name(s)
  • How much time should be allowed for the appointment
  • Procedures (application, testing, follow-up interview, etc.)
  • Who makes the final decision
  • Exact time, date, location and parking

Rehearse

Practice your facial expressions, eye contact, handshake and body language. Review likely interview questions and practice answering them. Do a mock interview with friends, family or staff in the Career Services Office.

Be Prepared

Bring a copy of your resumé, and pen and paper to the interview. You can also bring questions for the interviewer. Make sure use a folder or portfolio so your look is polished. The visual techniques used in a portfolio are more likely to be remembered and give you the opportunity to show your skills and achievement rather than just describe them. The portfolio can be adapted according to the needs of your particular interview.

Allow Time

Allow at least two hours for the interview. In some cases, you’ll actually need the entire workday. Some employers want to have you meet a number of people, tour the facility, take pre-employment screening tests and so forth.

Dress like a Professional

Plan what you are going to wear in advance and make sure it is pressed. Men usually wear ties, dress shoes and a business suit or slacks. Women should dress professionally, nothing too revealing. Make sure you wear hosiery and close-toed dress shoes to the interview. Dress codes vary and it’s better to be safe than sorry. Make sure your shoes are in good shape and your hair and fingernails are well-groomed. Go easy on the trendy and avoid displaying anything that may take attention away from your skills and qualifications.

Arrive a few minutes early

Always make sure you allow extra time if you are unfamiliar with the location.