Everywhere you look for interviewing tips, whether LinkedIn Articles or advice from a colleague, it is likely that you will hear different things about what you are supposed to do. After being a recruiter for over eight years, I can tell you that there are five main things candidates can do to help them land the job.
- Know the company that you are interviewing for. Hiring managers are often instantly turned off when the candidate has no idea what their company does. Take 30 minutes to an hour to look at the website and understand who the company is, what they do, and the clients that they serve. You don’t need to be an expert on every aspect of the company but knowing a little bit about the company as a whole will show that you took the initiative to do research on your own. That little bit of effort can go a long way in helping the candidate land the job.
- Study your resume the night before the interview. This may seem silly since you wrote your own resume, but you would be amazed how many times the interviewer will find that one obscure bullet point on your resume to ask questions about. Having a thorough understanding of your resume will allow you to speak to any question that the interviewer may ask and will also display the fact that you came prepared for the interview.
- Study the job description before the interview. Take a deep dive into the requirements of the job that you are interviewing for. Next, to each listed requirement, jot down a time that you have carried out that specific piece of work. This will help the candidate prepare for the interview by tailoring their responses to exactly what the hiring manager is looking for. Also, it allows for the candidate to provide the interviewer with tangible, apples for apples, an experience that specifically pertains to the job description.
- If you don’t know the answer to a question, that is OK. One of the most common pieces of feedback that I get from hiring managers when they are passing on candidates comes when the interviewee clearly doesn’t know the answer to a question but doesn’t admit it tries to give a roundabout answer to appease the interviewer. It is OK to admit that you don’t know the answer to a question, and many times the interviewer will appreciate the candidate’s honesty. Whenever in a situation like this, the candidate should be honest when they do not know the answer to a question but displays how they would go about getting the answer. This again will show the candidate’s honesty and ability to think outside of the box to resolve issues.
- The little things matter! Too many times I have seen a candidate get passed on for being late, not showing up in professional attire, or not knowing which specific job they are interviewing for. The candidate could be a fantastic fit for the given opportunity, be if these small things are overlooked then it won’t matter. Don’t give the interviewer a reason to pass on you besides not being a fit for the job. These are age-old interviewing tips for a reason – because they work!