Interviews

Made it through the application stage?
An interview is usually the next step.

Although methods differ across sectors and organisations an interview will be the primary tool that a recruiter will use to screen and select the most appropriate candidate for a position.

The recruiter will generally ask a variety of scenario based questions in addition to some technical questions that relates to your area of study.

 Research the organisation


 Dress the part


 Structure your responses

Interview information

When being offered an interview, verify the location, time and duration of the interview. You may need to arrive 30 minutes beforehand to complete paperwork.

Ensure that you ask whether you should prepare additional information (such as a presentation). It is useful to find out the names and position titles of the selection panel in order to build a rapport with the panellists.

Research

There is a variety of ways your can prepare for interviews. Researching the organisation and industry can assist you develop an understanding of potential interview questions and topics in informal conversations/networking.

Research can also assist you to plan responses which highlight your skills and align with the direction of the organisation's strategy.

Prepare questions

Research trends and impacts in industry for the role you are being interviewed for, as this will allow you to display a more thorough knowledge during the interview.

Select several questions to ask at the end of the interview which demonstrates your research. It is advisable to avoid questions related to salary. It is best to embark on salary negotiation after you are offered a position.

Communicate your employability

Review your complete application. Identify several of your key achievements and experiences and match these to the key characteristics being sought in the vacancy.

Prepare answers for likely or common questions that are expected during the interview. Confident use of the response structure known as STAR will be expected by the recruiter. Keep your answers direct and concise so that you keep on topic and interview within the allocated time frame.

The waiting game

During the interview, you should have been given a rough estimate of how long the recruitment process will take. If you have not heard back after one week past this time, it is reasonable to telephone or send a polite email. There are many reasons for delays in recruitment; often it comes down to internal processes.

Follow up interviews

Within a fortnight after the initial interview, a second follow up may be acceptable. Tread cautiously in your interactions, as you want to be remembered positively by the recruiter. Remain positive, but not dependent on the outcome.

The offer

If you are unsuccessful for this role, graciously accept and ask if the recruiter has several minutes available to offer some suggestions for areas of improvement or skill/experience development for the next round.

Your applications lifespan

Applications often remain active for 12 months so this is an excellent opportunity to reinforce your professional attitude. Continue to network with the organisation and advise them on updates about your professional development.

How we can help

We provide resources, workshops and appointments to optimise your interview

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Make an appointment with one of our friendly career advisors to get advice on a range of career related topics.