Getting a school leaver or graduate job is not easy. Some roles get hundreds of applicants for one job placement, here are our tips to help you to stand out and get that foot on the career ladder!
Congratulations you’ve got a job interview- now the hard work starts!
Dress Appropriately – starting with the obvious here. If you are going for an office based role you are better off dressing smart, in many media companies ties are almost extinct but interviewers would still prefer to see male candidates in a suit and tie and females also wearing smart office wear. Remember what you wear at an interview will not necessarily be how you are expected to dress when you actually start your new role.
Be Punctual – If an interviewer is seeing lots of candidates and one turns up late even by a few minutes, it’s an easy decision for them to turn down this candidate. Make sure you know the Location of the interview before you leave your home. Don’t arrive too early either as this might not go down too well with your interviewer. Find a local coffee shop or take a stroll down the road and plan to arrive five to ten minutes before the interview is due to start.
Research the organisation– Spend time researching the company, make sure you visit their website, LinkedIn profile and other social media sites. Find out as much information as you can about their organisation, also see if you can find out some background information about the person who is interviewing you – in smaller companies this is likely to be your line manager if you are successful.
Make the right first impression – Get the handshake right, not too weak as that’s how you will appear and not too firm as no-one wants to get their hand crushed!, Always remember to smile a few times during the interview. If you are not a naturally cheerful person practice in front of a mirror – a Theresa May grimace won’t get you hired!
Be at the top of your game –Be yourself - but be you on a very good day, think of a time of when you achieved something amazing and use that good feeling to get in “the zone” when you go into the interview room, confidence is vital but try not to appear over confident.
CV knowledge is vital – It’s very important you know your CV inside out. Interviewers will ask you questions about the content of your CV, if you don’t recall or remember what you’ve put on your CV they will not be impressed.
Expect the unexpected – Some interviewers will throw in curve- ball questions to see how you cope, questions like “if you were an animal, which one would you be”. These questions test your ability to think on the spot. Don’t worry when they come up – there is no right or wrong answer, so use your imagination.
Make sure you ask questions – Have 2 or 3 good questions prepared before your interview. An interviewer will usually ask you if you have any questions at the end of an interview and will expect you to ask them some. Good questions show you are interested in the role but bad questions will put the interviewer off you.
Say thank you – After an interview send an email to the interviewer thanking them for their time and stating how much you liked what you had heard about their company and that you would love to work for them. Send it the day of the interview if possible as it could really give you an edge if it’s a close run thing between you and another candidate.
Companies tend to only interview candidates whose CVs shows they meet the requirement s of the role, make sure you get all your best points out at the interview. Also if you are unsuccessful, don’t be afraid to ask for feedback so you can learn for next time.