Up to date interview advice

You have an interview.  Congratulations!  Take a moment to enjoy the feeling, you deserve it.  Okay, now you want to focus on making a great impression at the interview.
Our professional recruitment consultants have updated their advice to reflect today’s interview techniques.  Some things are written in stone, like being on time.  Others have changed to reflect the difference in how interviewers evaluate core and soft skills. Read more.
The paperwork
Companies have all sorts of requirements regarding consent declarations, right to work documentation and proof of address.  Be sure you know what you need to take with you and put this aside.
The interview format
What format is the interview?  Again, this can differ from one interview to the next.  You may be asked to prepare something in advance.  Check that you are clear on the instructions and if in doubt, call the person who arranged the interview.
The interviewer
Do you have the name and job title of the person conducting the interview?  If so it may be a good idea to do some research on their LinkedIn profile.  Check their job description and perhaps get a feel for where their passion lies in their career.  This may give you an edge when answering questions or formatting a presentation.
The company
Don’t forget to run an eye over even the most familiar company’s website and social media feeds to catch up on the latest developments.
Rehearse your answers
There are lots of behavioural and situational questions you can rehearse so that when in the interview, you stay on topic. 
  • How do you manage when working with a demanding manager or client?
  • Tell me about a time you needed to influence colleagues or clients to change?
  • Could you describe how you managed a large or sudden change in business requirements?
  • Have you been in a situation when you needed to take the initiative and how did you?
  • Can you please describe a time when you identified a problem at work and came up with and implemented a successful solution?
These are just a few of the many that could be asked.  Prepare by listing your strengths and creating questions along with corresponding answers that emphasise these strengths.
Rehearse your questions
List at least five questions you could ask the interviewer about the role and company.  Questions you could ask would concern challenges experienced in the role, why the role has become available or what scope for progression exists in the department.  These types of question demonstrate that you are thinking strategically about the role.
Who are you?
Soft skills are the personal qualities that define your character and your character defines how you react under certain circumstances.  Interviewers want to see your professional character in the interview so be prepared to open up about who you are and what motivates you.
To do this well create a story of where you come from, your big wins, how you’ve accomplished what you have and where you are going in your career.  Tell it to yourself in normal conversational words so that it does not sound scripted.  At some point, the interviewer will ask why you want the role or what makes you think you are suitable.  Your story will help you answer these types of questions and give the interviewers insight into how you would fit into the role.
Language and tone
Moderate your tone and speed of your speech.  As diverse as the world is, sometimes people are still thrown by an unusual accent or somebody that speaks much faster than they are used to.  Make sure your speech patterns are not a communications blockage.
Just as important, is your body language.  Make good eye contact and smile upon introducing yourself.  Make eye-contact with everyone in the interview when answering questions.
Send you interviewer/s a thank you email within 24 hours.  If you do not have their email, send this via the person who arranged the interview.  This keeps you at the forefront of their thoughts and further establishes you as a serious candidate.
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