Attending interviews

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Thorough preparation should leave you feeling calm and ready for your job interview. Here are some tips to see you through the interview.

  • Don't be late - reduce your stress levels and get there early
  • Make eye contact - look at the person who is talking to you and when answering questions, be sure to make eye contact with all people in the room
  • Listen - don't interrupt and if you don't understand the question, ask the interviewer to repeat it
  • Be friendly and smile - but don't be too casual and relaxed - you still want to be seen as professional and courteous
  • Give short answers - get straight to the point and don't waffle, but don't give basic 'yes' or 'no' answers either
  • Frame negative things in a positive way - never say bad things about former or current employers

What do employers look for?

Employers look for the following traits in people they interview:

  • Honesty and integrity - don't lie about your experience or achievements
  • Good communication - be clear in your responses
  • A good fit - they want to work with someone who can do the job and fit in with their culture

What questions will they ask?

You'll receive a range of questions, each designed to determine your suitability to the job and the company. It's a good idea to think about how you would answer these questions before you get into the interview.

  • Why do you want to work here?
  • Why are you leaving your current job?
  • What are your long term goals?
  • Why do you think you're suited to this role?
  • What are your strengths?
  • What are your weaknesses?
  • Can you tell me about a difficult situation you've faced?
  • What do you like to do in your free time?

What questions should I ask?

You will most likely have the opportunity to ask the interviewer questions. Even if they've covered everything you want to know about the role, it's still worth asking questions as it shows you have carefully considered the job. Ask any of the following (but not if they've already been answered):

  • How would you describe the workplace culture?
  • What long-term career opportunities are available?
  • What are the key challenges of this role?
  • What's the company's view on training?

Second interviews

If you get asked back for a second interview, you're on the home straight! You've obviously made a favourable impression during your first interview.

People are asked to return for a second (or even third interview) because the employer feels that they need more information or need other staff to meet you before making a final decision.

Questions may be similar to the first interview, especially if you're being interviewed by new panel of people, but they're more likely to ask specific questions that relate to the duties of the job.

Links

Careers with the Victorian Government - tips for applying
Good tips for preparing and performing in interviews for Government jobs.

Seek - Job Search Strategies
Check out the Job Interviews section of this page for interview tips and ideas.

Career One - Interview Tips
Tips and info to help you get ready for that killer interview.

Monster - Interview Presentation and Body Language
Worried about how to look and act? This site gives you some practical tips for your presentation and body language during the interview.