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Pass that Interview

Congratulations, you have managed to successfully secure an interview. You have passed the first hurdle, now it’s time to think about putting yourself in the best position to land that job.

Remember the interview is a two-way process. The company interviewing you will want to find out whether you are suitable for the position and it gives you a chance to see if you wish to work for the company.

Review your CV actually sent to employer and read over the application form prior to the interview. Employers often use this as a basis for questioning, so make sure you are clear on your skills, job history and qualifications. Prepared to explain gaps in employment or short stays in jobs in a positive manner as these are areas commonly probed at interview.

Do your homework, research the company find out as much as you can about your prospective employer, you may be asked what you know about the company or why do you actually want a role here. Review the job specification or job advert, this will provide you with the skills, experiences and the main responsibilities being sought for the role.

It’s natural to be nervous, remember is that the employer has asked to see you because they think you are capable of doing the job. The interviewer should put you at ease and get the best out of you, they are not trying to catch you out.

Once you have introduced yourself, sit up straight, keep good eye contact and don’t fidget. During the interview concentrate, actively listen, respond positively, be enthusiastic and remain polite and respectful throughout. Your main aim is to reinforce the excellent impression made by your CV.


There are several different types of interview, try to find out prior so you can prepare accordingly.

Traditional Interview
- Normally the manager of the position will conduct this as they want to know more about you and get a feel if your skills match those of the job requirements. You will be asked questions based on your CV experiences.
- What can you can offer this company?
- Why would you be good for this job?
- Tell me about yourself.

Competency Based Interview Designed to investigate an applicants’ specific skill or ability. Questions relate to their behaviour in specific circumstances usually reinforced with a real life example.
- How do you maintain good working relationships with your senior staff?
Give us an example of a situationwhere you had to deal with a conflict.
Tell us about a time when you made a decision, then changed your mind.
Give us an example where your listening skills proved beneficial.
When did our communication skills made a difference to an outcome?
- H
ow do you ensure compliance with policies in your department?

Panel Interviews
– A range of company staff such as HR, Sales and Senior Management conduct panel interviews to save time and get collective opinion of the candidate. Each member of the panel may ask you questions relevant to their area of responsibility. Focus your  ttention on the interviewer asking a particular question.

Don’t rush your answer, make sure you have understood the question and give yourself time to think about what you want to say. Try to back up with examples. If you cannot think of an answer then ask if you can move on and return to that question at the end. If you cannot think of a work example, if relevant, use experiences gained from a hobby or past-time, you may be secretary treasurer of local club, or have organized charity events.

Be prepared to ask some questions to help clarify if the job is really for you. Just make sure these haven’t already been covered during the interview.
- What do you feel will be my biggest challenge in the first 6 months
- What are the opportunities for career progression?
- What are the training opportunities?
- How much travel is involved?
- What are the targets for the first 3 months?

Closing on a confident note, leave the employer with a good final impression. Smile, thank them for their time, say you enjoyed discussing the job and that you look forward to hearing from them soon.

Staff Source Ltd

Forsyth House

Cromac Street


028 9051 2200

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