Find out as much as you can about the company. Go through the website fully, familiarising yourself with the full range of products and services. Ring for a brochure; know the competitors and the current market place. Write down / print off this information and take these details with you in a presentation folder – let them see you have done your research; they will be impressed straight away. Don’t rely on memorising the information!
Find out as much as you can about the interviewers/who you will be working for: Get on LinkedIn and see what background they have come from and any common interests you can bring up at interview, to develop a good rapport!
Know all the facts: Make sure you know the proper and full name of the interviewer, as well as the pronunciation of that name and their position in the company. If you have to, call up the company a few days ahead for them to spell the person’s name and ask them for the proper pronunciation.
The job specification: Make sure you have read the job specification thoroughly and understand it. Phone up your recruitment consultant and pick their brains, make sure you have a pen and paper handy when you do this, a lot of additional information will be given to you. We are here to help you.
Have your stats prepared: Where possible take in your current position’s statistics in with you, to show on paper where you have been successful in your current job role. Also take in your P60 or pay slips, as well as any awards or achievements, if you have them. If you have proof on paper, there is no concern on their behalf and this may save time in the interview process.
Prepare questions: At the end of every interview without fail you will be asked ‘Do you have any questions for us?’ There is nothing worse than not having questions prepared; it shows a lack of interest or preparation for the role.
Think of at least five interesting questions to ask about the company or the industry and the role. Don’t ask about things such as the salary, sickness allowance or what is the company car, as this will put them off. By asking intelligent questions (and not questions you could find out from a quick Google search), you'll not only impress the interviewer with your interest but also set yourself apart from the competition.
Such questions may include:
Why is this position open? (Find out why the previous person left or if it’s a new role in a growing company)
What traits or experience would a person need to be successful in this role?
What are the top goals and targets for the person you hire in this role?
What's your management style (or the management style of the hiring manager)?
Do you have any reservations about me? (If so overcome them!)
What are the next steps in this process?
In a competitive market, it can be difficult to even get to the first interview stage - so do not waste the opportunity and do as much research and preparation as possible.