Succeeding in an interview: how to show your professional skills

Key Steps to succeeding in an Interview

Interview skillsYouth Ambassador and Young Professional Ben Fisher gives his tips on succeeding in an interview. Sharing from his own experience Ben talks us through how you can show your professional skills in an interview.

You’ve found an amazing opportunity to work for a company that you are keen on, you know the reputation for the company is of a high standard AND they have invited you to interview – what can you do give yourself the best chance of passing the interview?

Do your research

Candidates who show up having done their research will always make a good a impression on an employer. It shows that you are interested in the organisation, that you have spent some time preparing and that you can research and communicate what you have learnt! Whilst every candidate that completes research might not always get the job, every candidate that does their research will get recognised as a good candidate! What does that mean? The employer will remember you and can keep you in mind for another application.

What do you know about us?

So first things first get to know the company, take a look at their website, you should be looking at the ‘about us’ pages and the news sections of the webiste at the very least! The company in question might have social media channels, depending on how big they are they might have channels just for their graduates and apprentices too, take a look and make note of the key stories coming through.

Why do you want to work in this department?/Why do you want THIS job?

So, you know the company and what they do but it is likely that the interviewer will ask you why you want to work in this department or this job. If you are interviewing with a large a company you might find some information online. In your preparation make sure you are looking again at the job specification. Your goal should be to link your skills and experience to the skills and activities explained in the department. For example, the job specification might describe the department as fast paced needing a candidate who can juggle a number of priorities. You should explain the experience you have had in your part time job, voluntary experience or from school work which matches this and how much you enjoyed it.

I recently went for an interview and was asked “Why do you want to work in this department?” Having researched the company I was able to link the knowledge of the company, with their plans for the future and what they do with my background.

Act Professional

I recently interviewed for a Post Production Assistant where the role would include working with and assisting production professionals. This role would require working with a team and it required strong communication and a professional and mature attitude.

Whether you have lots of experience or not the way you behave can show your potential:

My top tips:

  1. Interview skills top tipsExplain information on your CV and link this into the role this can show the employer how much information and background you have and how well you explain information.
  2. Politeness and professionalism: always offer a firm hand shake, smile and make sure your body language doesn’t let you down. If you are in the receptions slouching or looking disinterested when you are being shown around it won’t give the best impression
  3. Interview preparation is the key to success as it can help you to find out more about the company and succeed in interview. However as my previously experience has taught even if you don’t get the job the employer may remember you as a Good candidate and in future is likely to consider you for other possibilities

Ben’s story:

I recently went toBen Fisher an interview for a local company, I have applied to work their many times before but had never been invited to interview stage. Having worked hard on my application, really understanding the role and it’s requirements I was lucky enough to be selected for interview. Whilst this role was a perfect fit for another candidate I have been provided with the following feedback:

“Competition for jobs is always strong and we often have to make difficult choices between candidates. Now that we’ve had the chance to know more about you, we will be keeping your CV on file for future openings. We were very impressed with how polite you were at interview, you had really good answers for everything that we asked you and came across very well. Your application form was filled out in full, with sufficient information for us to digest; I can’t fault it in terms of that.”

Following the interview the employer has agreed to keep my CV on file for any future vacancies and it was also added in the feedback that

“Looking for a job can be tough but never give if you are unsuccessful, keep applying, ask for feedback and with improvement in your application one day the employer may realise your professionalism”

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