You applied for a job and got an interview invitation. Congrats! Now you’re wondering how you can prepare for a job interview. A job interview may be a face-to-face or an online video/audio conversation with the recruitment team. The employer asks you a series of questions and will assess you based on your answers. Moreover, the overall impression of your personality and conduct during the interview also plays a major role in the selection process.
In your interview, the hiring managers want to know why you wish to work in a particular position for their company and why you’re better than other shortlisted applicants. In short, you’ll have to answer two questions: “why you?” and “why us?”.
The purpose of the job interview for employers is to learn details of your academic background and work experience, job related skills, passion for the job and people skills. To ace the interview and move on to the next steps in the election process, you should learn how to prepare for a job interview. You can do so by following these tips.
Prepare for common job interview questions
Usually, there are some expected and some unexpected questions in a job interview. You can’t do much about the unexpected ones, but you can definitely prepare the common job interview questions. This preparation will boost your confidence and hopefully you’ll start the interview on a good note. Some common job interview questions are:
- Introduce yourself!
- What are your strengths and weaknesses?
- Why are you interested in this job position?
- How do you deal with stress?
- Where do you see yourself in five years?
Think about your answers for these questions as you will need them later for rehearsing your interview.
Do your research
Before taking the job interview, it’s important to take the time to analyze the job position. Think about what the employer expects and demands from a good candidate. Prepare your answers accordingly in order to meet those expectations and give the impression that you’re the perfect fit for the position.
Additionally, do your research regarding the company. Avoid generic sentences such as “this is one of the best companies in the world”. Dig deeper and collect valuable information from different sources such as company website, social media pages, news articles, etc.
This is one of the vital steps of your job interview preparation. Based on your answers, your potential employer will be able to see your interest in the job position as well as in the company.
Rehearse your interview
You have thought about your answers for the common interview questions. Now it’s time to rehearse for the interview in order to strengthen your soft skills. You may practice with a friend, family member or even in front of a mirror.
It is recommended to imitate the same format as the real interview. If it is a face-to-face interview, practice an interview with a friend or family member. For an online video interview, have a friend call you. It’s important to get comfortable with the software or app that will be used for the real interview. Record yourself while practicing so that you can review your performance and make appropriate improvements.
When you prepare for a job interview, you should be looking to improve on your confidence, positive body language, hand movements and your tone. Make sure you smile confidently, act naturally and don’t sound monotonous.
Make your final preparations
We are now at the final steps of your job interview preparation. This step concerns the following points:
Dress code for a job interview
If you are unsure of what to wear for a job interview, get an idea of the work environment of the company by visiting their website and social media pages. You can get a better idea by looking at photos. Do you see employees wearing formal, semi-formal or just casual? Once you answer the questions, prepare your dress accordingly. While looking at photos, keep in mind the position you’re applying for and focus on the photos of employees that might be working in similar positions such as trainees, experts, managers, etc. Besides this approach, you can also ask the HR regarding the dress code for the job interview.
Transportation and location
If it’s possible, do visit the location where the interview will take place before the actual interview. This will help you get a rough idea about time and distance. If it takes you roughly thirty minutes to reach there, you might want to leave at least fifteen minutes earlier in order to reach for the interview in a timely manner. If you get there way too earlier, wait outside and enter the office about ten minutes before the scheduled interview time. Remember, employers are also interested in your time management and organization skills.
Preparation of an online interview
If you’re preparing for an online interview, make sure your background has good lighting and is not distracting. There shouldn’t be any background noise. At least fifteen minutes before the interview, test your microphone, speaker and webcam to ensure that everything is working properly. Avoid sitting too far or too close to the webcam. Make sure the webcam captures not only your face but also your shoulders and an appropriate portion of your chest. If you naturally use hand gestures while talking, you might have to bring your hands to your chest height in order to make them visible in the webcam.
Remembering interview etiquette
Now that you’ve developed an understanding of how to prepare for a job interview, you should keep interview etiquette in mind during the interview.
If you want tips on how to work abroad and prepare documents required for a job application such as CV, Cover Letter and Letter of Recommendation (LOR), check out Steps to Work Abroad.
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Author: Adil Ilyas