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Interview Advice for Candidates

Job interviews can come in all shapes and sizes. In some cases, you only need to succeed at one type of these to land the job. In other cases, you may face several rounds of an interview with different formals included throughout the process. 

The team at Taylor Gray LTD have put together lots of helpful hints and tips to give you a start on preparing to succeed at your interview and land the role of your dreams!

Contact us for further information.

 

Face To Face Interviews

The traditional and most common form of interview. This involves you attending the employer's home or office, and you'll be questioned on the suitability for the job you're applying for.

Face-to-face interviews usually last between 45 minutes and two hours and may include tests or exercises, more often with PA roles. Questions may be strength or competency based. 

Telephone Interviews

These are most often used by employers in the early stages of the application process to filter the number of applicants down to a smaller number. Telephone interviews are a useful tool for employers, and your first opportunity to make a great impression and stand out from the crowd.

If your telephone interview is successful, you will typically be invited to a face-to-face interview. 

Expect a telephone interview to last around half an hour. 

Video Call Interviews

Increasingly popular among large employers, particularly for applications for positions overseas, video calls are a new challenge for applicants!

Video call interviews combine elements of face-to-face and telephone interviews and are becoming more common due to Covid-19.

 
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What to Wear to an Interview

Knowing what to wear to an interview is becoming trickier than ever. Whilst many employers still expect candidates to dress smartly, the number of companies encouraging casual clothing at work is growing, leaving potential employees unsure how to dress. 

What you'll be expected to wear depends on many factors, including the size of the company, the industry it operates in and the culture it promotes. Do your research before the interview and whatever you choose, make sure your clothes are ironed and your shoes are clean!

 

Interview Research

To an extent, your performance in an interview depends on how well you prepare. Don't leave this until the last minute. In the days leading up to the interview, focus your research on the employer and the role you're applying for.

Don't forget to plan the practical things. When and where is the interview taking place? Make sure you plan your journey and check the timetables for any public transport you may need to take. 

The Employer

To perform well in your interview and impress the employer, you need to show that you understand the business beyond the basics. Make sure you know what sector the business operates in, the challenges it may face, its competitors, any major projects it has recently completed and make sure you have read and understand the company's culture and values.

This kind of knowledge demonstrates a genuine interest and is bound to impress your potential employer.

The Role

Make sure you read the job description again and, if you completed an application form or wrote a cover letter, go over it to refresh your memory of how your skills and qualifications match the role you're interviewing for.

It's vital that you can explain why you want the job, that you understand the role and, more importantly, why the employer should choose you other the other candidates. This preparation is essential in order to give the best impression possible at your interview.

 

How to Make a Good Impression

Think about the ways you can show yourself in a positive light. Amongst the best techniques are:

Punctuality

Arriving late will not only make you more stressed, but it will also give the employer a bad first impression. Do your best to arrive in good time.

Positivity and Enthusiasm

Be polite and professional with any staff you meet before or after the interview. If you're feeling particularly nervous, remind yourself that the worst thing that could happen is not getting the job. During the interview, respond to questions with positive statements, be enthusiastic and avoid making negative comments about previous employers or university tutors.

Body Language

Give a firm handshake to your interviewer(s) before and after the session. Once you're seated, sit naturally without slouching or leaning on the desk. Throughout the interview, remind yourself to maintain eye contact and smile frequently.

Clarity

Answer all questions clearly and concisely, evidencing your most relevant skills, experiences and achievements. It's perfectly acceptable to pause before answering a question to give yourself time to think, and don't forget to ask for clarification if you are unsure what a question means. Make sure not to speak too quickly when answering questions.

 
 

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