The job interview is probably the most important step you will take in your job search journey - it’s your best chance to show the company and hiring manager that you’re the best person for their job. To help you land your next job, we've arranged our job interview tips based on the interview stage you're in.
You can either scroll below, or click our buttons on the right to be taken to your job interview tips section preference.
You never get a second chance to make a great first impression during your job interview, so how you prepare for an interview is vitally important to increase your chances of landing that dream job.
Interview preparation is the key to success and a well-polished presentation can give you an edge over others whose credentials might just be better than yours. Read our top job interview tips below on how to prepare for an interview:
You’ve received a call for that dream job, so how do you prepare for the interview? The first step in the preparation process should be to go back and review the job description. Most job descriptions follow a similar pattern and are usually categorised by the following points.
- Job title/Department
- Duties and tasks
- Skills required
The job title and department will give you an understanding of the major purpose of the position and where the role fits into the organisation, allowing you to discover who your potential line manager could be.
When you prepare for an interview, read and review the job description very thoroughly and be sure to align your competencies with the skills required for the job. You will consequently ready yourself for questions around your previous experiences, performing similar duties in other organisations.
Organisations look to hire people with similar values to those of the company culture. Researching the company before an interview will give you an insight into the organisation's future goals and plans and being able to discuss these points will make you seem like a long-term investment to your future employer. The following interview preparation tips will give you a guide as to which aspect of the company should be researched:
- Company financials: Check the company website. Doing a Google search can also uncover the current state of the company. Have they gone through a merger? - or have they expanded recently? LinkedIn is also a good source of information.
- Culture: Look at LinkedIn and Facebook or check Google reviews for comments by current or former employees.
- Executive team: Look through the company website to research the company hierarchy and find out who the executives are.
- Competitors: Find out who the company’s main competitors are and look into the websites of organisations in the same industry.
If you're wondering what to wear for an interview, you're not alone. Wearing the interview outfit won’t get you the job, but wearing the wrong clothes will sink any chances of impressing the interviewer.
There is one rule that stands above all: Dress professionally. Wear business attire appropriate for the role, while still making sure you feel comfortable.
When you prepare for an interview one of the most important things to consider is how you are going to get there. A failure to plan is a plan to fail. If you are planning on driving to the job interview, make sure you fill your car with fuel the night before. You don’t want to be filling up on the way dressed in your suit.
Make sure you arrive on time, or better yet, 15 minutes early. Know the address and if you can, have a trial run a couple of days before. The morning of the job interview, check the traffic reports and have a backup route planned just in case. If you are travelling by train or bus, check the weather report the night before and keep an eye on the public transport websites for any delays. Look out for track works or traffic conditions that can potentially delay your train or bus trip.
Go to bed early the night before and wake up early to give yourself plenty of time.
How To Prepare For A Phone Interview
In today’s digital world some hiring managers choose to conduct preliminary interviews by phone. Phone interviews can be challenging as you're not physically in the room with your interviewer and in some cases, you have to work even harder to stand out.
Take phone interviews seriously and make sure you prepare for the interview. Dressing as you would for any other interview will put you in the right mindset. Also, sit at a desk or table. It is important to create a setting similar to as you would be sitting in front of the hiring manager.
How To Prepare For A Video Interview
As with phone calls, video interviews can be tricky - the good news is, at least during a video interview, the hiring manager can see you.
Video interviews are a great way to connect and can save both parties the hassle of travel. When you prepare for a video interview make sure your technology is up to date and working. Take the time to also check that your surroundings are clean and tidy. It may seem obvious, but in the midst of delivering an answer, it can be easy to forget that you're sitting in front of a camera.
Once you've completed your interview preparation, the next step is to ace the job interview itself. Whether you get offered the job depends largely on how you perform during the interview, so its imperative to make a great first impression on your hiring manager.
It's not just what you do, it's also what you say, and how you say it. Read our job interview tips on questions to ask in an interview below.
The most important part of preparing for an interview is practicing how to answer interview questions you might be asked on the day.
Knowing the most common types of job interview questions and answers is an advantage. Knowing common interview questions, such as “Tell me about yourself.” can help you craft your answers well in advance, and feel confident in your responses when the pressure is on.
Our interview questions and answers guide will help you prepare for your next job interview.
Have you ever wondered what behavioural interview questions (BIQs) are - and how to answer them?
We’ve compiled the ultimate and definitive guide to help you respond to behavioural interview questions with ease in your next interview.
Most people get nervous before interviews. Job interviews are an important step in getting what you want out of your career so it’s normal to feel some pre-game jitters.
However an interview doesn’t have to be daunting. The key to success is job interview preparation. Preparation is what will give you confidence. Here are some interview tips to prepare you for the interview.
- Dress to impress. Make sure your clothes are clean, ironed and presentable.
- Make eye contact, and begin with a strong handshake. This will signal your confidence when you meet your interviewer for the first time.
- Sit still, with your feet firmly on the ground. This will help you maintain your posture and avoid fidgeting.
- Remember your CV details. In particular the experience most relevant to the role you're interviewing for.
- Make a note of your questions. Bring a note-pad if you feel you might forget important points.
- Ask questions. It's just as important for the interviewer to sell the benefits of working at their business, as it is for you to impress your next potential employer. Make sure you find out by asking questions to the interviewer.
- Turn up late to the interview. If for some reason on the day it's unavoidable, call ahead to let your interviewer know your expected time of arrival.
- Dress sloppily or inappropriately. Not sure what to wear? Read our guidelines.
- Smoke before your interview. Whilst a quick cigarette might seem like a good idea to calm your nerves, the smell will be noticeable and unpleasant for your interviewer.
- Volunteer your weaknesses. Whilst honesty is always the best policy, there is no need to volunteer your shortfalls unless asked directly.
- Criticise your current or previous employer. Doing so could give your interviewer the impression you're difficult to work with.
Preparing for competency-based interview questions is like painting a picture for prospective employers of your work to-date, and why this is intrinsically valuable and applicable to them.
These interview questions work on the assumption that past behaviour is a good predictor of future action.
Most hiring managers use these questions in job interviews, so make sure you are well prepared before going into the interview.
Have you ever wondered what questions to ask at a job interview?
In seeking a job, it’s important to remember that an interview isn’t just an opportunity for the employer to find out if you're a suitable candidate - the interview works both ways, so make sure you prepare questions to ask the interviewer.
Read our guide on the best questions to ask at a job interview to ensure the job is the right fit for you too.
What you say in an interview is only a part of the message you send to a potential employer.
Positive body language plays a vital part in the first impression that hiring managers have of you.
Read our guide on how to put forward your best self in an interview.
Congratulations! You made it through the initial interview process, hopefully picking up some great job interview tips.
Don't stop there. It’s time for your interview follow-up. The next part of the process is just as important, if not more so. In today's competitive job market it's imperative you follow up your initial job interview with a thank you letter or a thank you interview email to reiterate your interest in the role, and brush up on your interview techniques and your interview skills.
Read below for tips on what to do after the job interview to make it into the next round of interviews - and successfully achieve your dream job.
After your first interview, it can be tempting to sit back and wait for the job offer to roll in. Don't undermine all the good job interview preparation you did by faltering at this stage - keep the lines of communication with your potential employer open by sending an interview thank you email.
Read our article outlining why you should send an interview follow up, the format and content that should be included, as well as an example of an interview thank you email you can use as a template.
Once you have made it through the first interview round, it's vital that you keep up the positive momentum for your second interview and beyond.
Being invited back for a second interview is a good indication that you're being seriously considered for the position.
Read our second interview tips on what to anticipate during your next job interview, and the types of second interview questions you will be asked (and should ask).
Tackling The Big Interview Question: Salary
No matter how promising the opportunity, there’s no denying that salary is a major factor when accepting a job offer. It's important to broach the question of salary in the right way. Read our 5 top tips to improve your salary negotiation skills.
Job Interview Tips - It's A Bit Like A First Date
Job interviews, like dates, can actually be very positive experiences. The key is for both parties to be a good match and it's a good idea for you to do some groundwork before you head into the job interview. Check out our 9 job interview tips.
How To Showcase Your Interpersonal Skills
Since a lot of jobs involve interacting with people, good interpersonal skills are not just important, they’re often vital to strong performance. Here are our top 3 interpersonal skills to ensure you dazzle any potential employer in a job interview.