The interview is when employers will get to know your personality, interests, goals, and objectives. You will no longer be a list of skills and experiences on a piece of paper; this is your opportunity to give specific examples and anecdotes and explain how these experiences make you the perfect candidate for the position.
It is the perfect time to demonstrate your interest in the position and your knowledge about the company and the industry. This is the time for the employer to find out who you are, so be yourself.
What Employers Are Looking For
Interviews can be very stressful, but the best way to overcome this is to be prepared and know what employers are looking for:
- Job candidates with a definite idea of their goals, objectives, strengths, and skills.
- Candidates who are knowledgeable about the position they are interviewing for, the company and its products, and the industry overall.
- Candidates who can match their own skills and experiences with the needs of the company.
- Candidates who are confident in themselves and their ability to contribute to the company.
- Candidates who can discuss past experiences and give specific examples that demonstrate their skills and accomplishments.
Another way to decrease the stress of an interview is to prepare beforehand. Review your resume and make sure you know your skills, experiences, goals, interests, accomplishments, and objectives inside and out. You'll be asked a lot of open-ended questions, and you will need to be able to give specific examples and articulate yourself clearly and concisely.
Familiarize yourself with the most common Questions Asked by an Employer. Develop answers to these questions, but do not memorize your answers. Make sure all of your responses are positive and highlight your skills and accomplishments. When asked about difficult or negative experiences, describe those experiences as learning experiences.
During the interview, the employer will not be the only person asking questions; you are expected to ask questions throughout the interview, as well as at the end when the inevitable question is asked: "So, do you have any questions for me?" Always ask questions. If the employer has answered all of your questions already, come up with something else to ask about. Your questions can demonstrate your interest in the position and your knowledge about the company and industry. Keep all of your questions job related.
Interviews can be one-on-one or you may be interviewed by a panel of people. You may interview with the hiring manager or recruiter for screening purposes or you may interview with people you will be working with and for.
During the interview, the employer will ask you about yourself, your background, and your experiences. These will often include open-ended questions that you can use to relate your experiences to the needs of the company. Always give specific examples that highlight your skills and accomplishments.
The employer will also present information about the company. This is a good opportunity for you to ask questions and demonstrate how you would contribute to the organization.
At the end of the interview, the employer will typically ask if you have any questions. Make sure you have a few questions to ask during this time. You can also take this time to add any information that you didn't get a chance to mention earlier. Find out the next step in the interviewing process. Thank the employer for his/her time.