When you’ve worked hard to get an interview for a great job, there is nothing worse than showing up on the day of the interview unprepared. Aside from having a sparkling resume and cover letter, there are other, lesser known, tricks to making sure you make the best impression possible in that first meeting. Here we will look into the most important steps to help get you ready for the big day.
7 Preparation Steps to Complete Before Your Next Interview:
- Review Your Resume – No one wants to show up to an interview with an outdated resume or gasp—grammatical errors for your potential new boss to discover. Beef up your resume to appeal to the HR recruiter or interviewer and make sure important facts that relate to the current position are clearly marked and highlighted. It is also a good idea to have a separate list of professional references on hand in case it is needed.
- Do Your Homework – Research as much as you can online about the company, it’s mission and it’s hierarchy. Even make sure you have the right address and know exactly how to get there! Being knowledgeable about how the company works and who’s who will bode well for you should the topic come up during the interview. You can never know too much about a potential employer. In fact, if you are working with a recruiter, see if they’ve had other candidates who have gone for interviews at the company. If they have any feedback or advice to share with you, that will be invaluable information.
- Check Your Credit Rating – Many larger companies now do thorough background check on all potential employees, including a credit check. This helps them determine your reliability and it can be especially useful for positions involved in accounting and finance. To know where you stand and find your credit rating, be sure to visit one of the main credit report providers in the UK. A recent MSN Money article by Darren Beach of Credit Expert talks further about the importance of good credit and provides tips on how to improve your rating if necessary.
As a note: With background checks now a common practice for many companies, you don’t have to worry about it negatively affecting your credit rating. Because this type of inquiry is considered a “soft” hit it will be ignored in your score calculation.
- Prepare a List of Questions – There is normally a time where the interviewer will turn the reigns over to you, allowing you to ask any questions you may have. Instead of the predictable questions about pay rates and health plans, ask questions that show you are interested in how things work within the company. This is a great opportunity to show the interviewer that you understand what the position entails and how the company works.
- Dress the Part – Plan your wardrobe choices out ahead of time and take a good look in the mirror to ensure everything fits well and doesn’t need any alterations. A conservative business suit is preferred for any interview, whether you are male or female, but this is can be an expensive undertaking. If you really want to dress to impress – and not break the bank, at least consider wearing glasses! A third of adults think spectacle-wearers look more professional. 43% adults think they appear more intelligent.
- Assemble Your Tools – On the day or night before your big interview be sure you have a pencil and pad of paper for notes, extra copies of your resume, business cards, reference numbers and any additional information you have been asked to bring along with you to the interview. Place everything in a briefcase to complete your professional look.
- Get a Good Nights Sleep – Nothing will prepare you better for an interview than a good, solid night of rest. If you are having trouble winding down don’t turn to the TV or Internet to distract you as they can actually over stimulate your brain. Instead get to bed early with a good book and a warm cup of tea. Set your alarm to give yourself plenty of time in the morning and rest easy knowing you are completely prepared to rock your interview.