Carefully preparing for a job interview can help you get more out of the day
Why are job interviews so important? They are your chance to prove to the employer that you are the best person for the job. They also give you an opportunity to find out if the job is a good fit for you.
Never go into a job interview without doing some preparation first. An interviewer will spot a poorly prepared candidate right away! Instead, take a little time to prepare yourself with information, knowledge, and questions that are relevant to the job. Try these tips.
1. Learn about the potential employer
Knowing about the potential employer is important for two main reasons. First, it shows the employer that you took the time to learn about the organization. This communicates that you are serious about the job. And second, it gives you a better idea of whether it’s a place you want to work. Here are some tips for learning about the employer:
- Read their website.
- Look for online reviews.
- See if you can find a financial report or annual report to get an idea of the organizations’ budget, priorities, and goals.
- Check Google News to see if there have been any recent news stories about the employer.
2. Bring a list of questions with you
Remember, the interview isn’t all about the employer asking you questions. You may ask them questions too. Write down a list of about 10 questions you have about the job. Questions might be about the position itself, the goals of the company, or the expectations that they will have of you. However, remember that the interview is NOT a good time to ask about salary, benefits, or vacation. Save that for after you get a job offer.
Here are some sample questions:
- What are the key responsibilities in this position?
- What would a typical day look like in this job?
- Where would this job fall in the reporting structure? Who would I report to?
- What are the expected hours/shifts for this job?
- What are the traits that have made past employees successful in this job?
- How do you see the department changing/improving in the next five years?
- What do you enjoy most about working here?
3. Do a practice interview
A mock interview is an excellent way to prepare for an interview. It gives you the opportunity to talk about your strengths and weaknesses and rehearse some phrases that you want to use. If you are a student at a career training school or in college, visit your Career Development department and request an appointment for a mock interview. If you are not in school, you could ask a friend or family member to help. Here are some sample questions to try out.
- Tell me about yourself.
- What experience do you have in this career?
- How has your experience prepared you for this job opportunity?
- What computer skills do you have?
- Describe a problem you had in your past job, and how you solved it.
- Where do you see yourself in your career in 5 years’ time?
- Why are you interested in this job?
4. Bonus tips for interview preparation
After doing your research, writing your questions, and participating in mock interviews, there are just a few more small details to remember. Don’t forget to:
- Bring 3 copies of your resume and your list of references with you
- Plan out your clothes a few days beforehand to see if you need any last-minute items
- Plan out your route a few days early, and be sure to budget extra time so that you arrive 10 minutes early.
We hope these tips help you to better plan for your next interview. Being well-prepared can make the process less stressful and more productive for you. Best of luck to you. We hope these tips are just the beginning of a successful new career for you!
The American College for Medical Careers provides career advice and other career-related information in its weekly blog. Contact us to learn more about ACMC’s career-focused training programs in Orlando, Florida.