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Before the Interview

•          Do your “Homework”. Learn a bit about the company, what do they do? What their philosophy is? Also be familiar with the job description, as you may be questioned on it.

•          Know your own CV. As you may be asked questions about it. If there are time gaps in your CV be prepared to explain these to the interviewer.

•          Prepare your outfit. A suit would be appropriate. Make sure hair is clean and tidy and shoes are not scuffed.

•          Plan your route to the interview (do research, google it, find the address, the bus/train or motorway how to get there, use google street view – to make sure you know how the building looks like) and allow plenty of time to get there (YOU DON’T WANT TO BE LATE!).

•          Make sure you know the names of the people or person interviewing you and their position(s).

The Interview

•          Greet the interviewer standing up straight and smiling, then give your interviewer a firm handshake.

•          Show a keen interest in the job. You should try to show interest in the job by asking the interviewer a few questions, such as:

o   “What training do you provide?”

o   “Will I get the certificates at the end?”

o   “What else do I need for this position/role?”

•          Speak clearly and calmly, try not to get flustered.

•          Keep answers to the point, try not to get side-tracked. Also avoid answering just yes or no.

•          Be honest in the interview. There is no point lying about your skills or background.

•          Don’t be negative or criticise previous employers, it’s not professional.

•          During the interview, look attentive, maintain eye contact with everyone present, smile – don’t laugh and do not slouch. Before leaving the interview, ask the interviewer when they are expecting to make a decision or when you will be asked back for a 2nd interview. Let the employer know you are interested.

•          As you leave the interview it is good to reiterate your interest in the position, then shake hands with all present.

Frequently asked questions

1.        What do you know about us?

2.        Describe your present duties and responsibilities?

3.        Why do you want this particular job?

4.        How would you describe yourself?

5.        Why should I hire you?

6.        What are your strengths and weaknesses?

Some possible questions to ask the interviewer

1.        Can you tell me more about the company?

2.        Can you describe my area of responsibility?

3.        Is this post a new or existing one?

4.        Who will I report to?

5.        Can you show me where I will be working? (Better on a second interview)

6.        Are there any times when the company/department is busier?

7.        What are my promotion prospects?

8.        Do you run any training schemes?

9.        Do you provide any certificates for the trainings?

10.      What hours will I be working?

11.      Do you have any other branches/offices?

12.      Is the training self-funded or not?

Obviously do not ask all these questions, just select a few which are relevant and you feel comfortable asking.

After the interview

•          If the interview was arranged through a recruitment agency, call your recruitment consultant to give them your feedback on how the interview went.

•          If possible, write a letter of thanks to your interviewer, thanking them for their time and reaffirming your interest in the position.

Summary

·        Always be yourself in an interview situation, as a good interviewer will see through a performance.

·        If you are not successful always ask for feedback as this can be used constructively to help you improve your success for future interviews.

·        All the preparation in the world will not guarantee you a job, but it will give you an advantage over those candidates that haven’t prepared, which means following some simple rules that we mentioned above you will separate yourself from the masses.

To create a great first impression is vital. It is easy to do a well-structured CV which will do more or less the job for you if you follow some simple steps.

To help you with the process use the following guide and we recommend that you follow the order below.

Personal Details

Full name, address, email address and telephone number

Education

When it comes to education you have to make sure that you mention only the most relevant ones to the job role that you are applying for. Yes, that may mean you will have to adjust your CV every time you apply for a different job role, (e.g. if you are applying for a healthcare position, the fact that you got an A+ for history it is completely irrelevant).

Professional Qualifications

Beside the fact that you have to mention the qualification and the awarding institution, don’t forget to mention how and when you obtained it.

Current or Last Employment

It is the most recent job which is of primary interest to a prospective employer. It may therefore be helpful to highlight this in a section of its own and to give more details than for earlier jobs.

Previous Employment History

Jobs should be listed with dates and it is a MUST to mention them in order starting with the current or last one (any gaps in chronology is likely to be questioned). Do not waste space by detailing early and irrelevant jobs. It is recommended to mention not more than 3-4 previous jobs.

Do not state your reasons for leaving each employment on your CV, you should keep this information for interview, also avoid leaving career gaps unanswered; simply state information such as 1999 – 2005: Raising family or June-Dec 2008: Travelling.

Training and Development

As we mentioned before you will probably have more than 1 CV, based on the sectors you are applying for. It is not advisable to give a long list of training courses attended, only the most relevant trainings and/or development information.

Management training courses of a week or more should normally be listed, together with any training in relevant specialist skills.

Personal Interests/Activities

It is not essential to include this section. However, if there are aspects, which provide evidence of relevant knowledge, skills or personality then these are worth listing. Examples might include being a team leader in some after-school activities, running a reading club, captain for a football team or any forms of voluntary work, which demonstrate organisational, leadership and management skills. But again, make sure it’s relevant to the job role. Sometimes an unusual hobby can be worth mentioning, as it will give your CV an interesting feature that the reader remembers.

Some examples how to use hobbies:

·        keeping a blog (if you are applying for a marketing or communication position);

·        yoga (shows that you can control the situation and you can handle pressure);

·        skydiving or ultra-marathon (shows that you are comfortable with breaking barriers, you are disciplined and not afraid of unknown);

·        captain of a football team (shows strong leadership skills);

·        playing an instrument (dedicated, disciplined and can concentrate easily)

 

Avoid mentioning References available on request. 

If a company will need some references from you or your previous employer, they will ask for it in the interview. There is no need to mention this in the CV.

Hagleys Contact11th Floor, Cobalt Square,
83-85 Hagley Rd, Birmingham, B16 8QG

0121 6 30 20 10

For further information or enquiries, please contact us using the information above..