If you have been selected for an interview, you are moving in the right direction! Often times this is the result of a great resume and/or great networking. Now is the time to show that you are the best candidate for the position. It is also the time for you and the employer to determine if there’s a good fit.
Interviews are conducted virtually, over the telephone and in-person. The preparation process is the same for all formats.
Before the Interview
- Research the employer, the position and the industry
- Try to get the name(s) of the interviewer(s). Google and look them up in LinkedIn
- Confirm the time, date, and location of the interview.
- If the interview is being conducted via telephone or Skype, make sure you are clear on the time zone in which the interview will be conducted
- Identify your skills that relate to the job; review your resume and be able to elaborate on your experience
- Look online for frequently asked interview questions for your major
- Schedule a mock interview with your Career Counselor and/or practice using Interview Stream
- Practice answering interview questions and get comfortable with the STAR Method
- Prepare questions to ask the interviewer; always have a least two
- Know the general salary range for the position
- Plan your attire. Remember to dress for success!
- For virtual interviews, dress professionally, at least from the waist up
- Have a padfolio prepared with extra copies of your resume
During the Interview
- Arrive 10-15 minutes early so that you have time to relax
- Silence your telephone
- If the interview is on the phone or virtual, make sure that:
- You are in a quiet place where there won’t be any interruptions
- Your computer is charged and that you have access to the Internet
- Your telephone is charged
- Have your padfolio, resumes and a pen close by
- Extend a firm, confident handshake, with a smile, to the interviewer(s)
- Remember to smile with during virtual and telephone interviews
- Follow the lead of the interviewer
- Listen closely to the questions; ask for clarification if needed
- Provide concise answers, with enough detail and examples for the employer to get a clear understanding of your skills or accomplishments
- Never speak negatively about a former employer, supervisor, or colleague
- Ask about the next steps in the interview process
- Do not ask about salary; but conduct research on salary ranges.
- Make sure that your non-verbal communication shows that you’re interested
- Lean forward
- Nod occasionally to show that you’re connecting with what the interviewer is saying
- Thank the interviewer(s) for the time
- Request business cards (or email addresses, if virtual)
After the Interview
- Write a thank you note to the interviewer and send it the same day, or within 24 hours
- Jot down the questions that were asked so that you can reflect on the them
- Schedule a time to meet with your career counselor to candidly assess your performance
- How well you present yourself, your skills and your qualifications?
- Did you use good examples? Could you have used better ones?
- What did you talk about that captured the interviewer’s attention?
- What do you need to do to improve for your next interview?
- Call to find out the status of your application if the employer has not contacted you within the stated time frame. You can also send an email.
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