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Job Interview skills Learning Outcomes. By the end of this session, you should be able to :  Understand the purpose of interviews Be aware of the processes involved in different types of interviews Know how to prepare for interview Be clear about the importance of self presentation.

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job interview skills learning outcomes
Job Interview skillsLearning Outcomes

By the end of this session, you should be able to : 

  • Understand the purpose of interviews
  • Be aware of the processes involved in different types of interviews
  • Know how to prepare for interview
  • Be clear about the importance of self presentation

Remember – an interview is not one way traffic! Recruitment

Costs are high and employers want you as much as you want them.

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an interview will enable an employer
An interview will enable an employer:
  • Ensure that you understand what the job involves, and that you have the necessary skills
  • Check your knowledge of/and commitment to the company

It is a two way process and you should use the opportunity to:

  • Make sure you do want to work for the company
  • Check that the philosophy/values of the company match your personal requirements
  • Find out more about the job, training, career structure etc.

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types of interview
Types of interview
  • Individual interviews – one to one.
  • Panel interviews – usually three people on the panel, but there could be more!
  • Telephone interviews – usually part of the initial selection process
  • Video interviews – uncommon at graduate level entry, but not unheard of

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individual interviews
Individual interviews
  • For a large organisation this may be a ‘sifting’ exercise to see if you will go forward to the next stage
  • For a smaller employer, this may be your main meeting
  • The focus here is usually building on information from your CV or application form, but you should be prepared for anything

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panel interviews
Panel interviews
  • Very common for graduate entry level jobs
  • Usually 3 people on the panel ( could be more, could be less )
  • All will ask questions
  • Likely that they will have different areas of interest

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telephone interviews
Telephone interviews
  • Usually used as a screening interview to gain further information before inviting you for interview
  • Length of time may vary – could range from 10 minutes to 1 hour
  • Treat the experience with caution – just because you can’t be seen doesn’t mean you are not creating an impression!

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video interviews
Video interviews
  • Check all technical equipment to make sure everything is working
  • Talk to the camera - this way you appear to be looking straight at the interviewers

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the key to any successful interview is preparation
The key to any successful interview is preparation
  • Research the company – make sure you have read all the literature they have sent you and that you know about their main products and services
  • Use the internet to find out any additional information and read the financial/business press to find out about any current developments e.g. new contracts or takeover bids
  • Find out about the main competitors in order to demonstrate knowledge of the wider context
  • Network with people who know about the company and don’t be afraid to use any contacts you may have to get ‘inside information’
  • Have a list of questions ready to ask

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in addition
In addition…
  • Plan your route and give yourself plenty of time in case of traffic disruption
  • Plan your outfit, and remember – first impressions count!!
  • Anticipate questions and practise answers
  • Run through your presentation, paying strict attention to timing
  • Bring copies of CV/Application form

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interview nerves
Interview nerves

You will be nervous but you can help yourself by

  • Getting a good night’s sleep
  • Allowing plenty of time for the journey
  • Arriving early so you know exactly where to go – but not too early!
  • Avoiding stimulants like coffee and cigarettes
  • Checking your appearance to make sure everything is as it should be

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remember that practice pays
Remember that practice pays
  • Get a friend to ask you questions and give feedback
  • Use a tape or video recorder to check for any mannerisms or verbal tics
  • Ask at the Career Development and Employment Service about having a mock interview

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watch your language
Watch your language
  • Avoid speaking too quickly
  • Take a few seconds before you answer to give yourself time to collect your thoughts
  • If you are not clear about the question then ask for clarification
  • If you lose your thread ask for a moment to clarify your thoughts
  • Ask if the interviewer needs additional information

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watch your body language
Watch your body language!
  • Give a firm, dry handshake
  • Make eye contact with all members of the panel
  • Smile to show your interest and enthusiasm
  • Avoid extravagant hand gestures
  • Sit slightly forward to indicate involvement

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remember
Remember:
  • Do not alienate the interviewer by making them work too hard – it should be a conversation rather than a question and answer session
  • Avoid giving ‘yes’ and ‘no’ as answers - it is much more effective if you go on to give examples to demonstrate what you mean
  • Don’t just give an answer you think they want to hear - be honest in what you say and be prepared to back up your ideas and views

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what sort of questions can you prepare for
What sort of questions can you prepare for
  • Why are you applying for this job?
  • Give an example of where you have worked in a team
  • What has been your biggest achievement to date? Why are you interested in this company?
  • What are your main strengths?
  • What are your main weaknesses?
  • Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?
  • How would your friends describe you in 3 words?

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put your answer in a context for scenario based questions
Put your answer in a context for scenario based questions
  • Context – brief description of the situation
  • Action – what steps did you take?
  • Result – what was the outcome?

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do you have any questions
Do you have any questions?
  • What would my career prospects be like?
  • What training/support could I expect?
  • What would the key objectives be in the first 6 months of the job?
  • How will my performance be measured?

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however
However….
  • Do not ask questions just for the sake of it
  • Do not ask questions if you should already know the answer e.g.if it is in the company literature
  • Do not ask about fringe benefits – that conversation can take place when you have been offered the job
  • And remember….it may be that all your questions have been answered over the course of the interview

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