How do I turn interviews into job offers? - Career blog - Position Ignition - taking you to the next step in your career

Q.   - I’ve had four interviews recently for a few different positions, but I haven’t heard back from any of them. I’m getting desperate – how do I make it past the interview stage?

H.L., Stoke-on-Trent

A. - This topic comes up again and again – what’s going wrong is that you need to better understand who you are going to see. Different interviewers want different things:

Recruitment Consultants

Recruitment consultants work on behalf of the employer. It’s their job to weed out inappropriate candidates and to compile a shortlist of candidates to send to their client (the employer) as soon as possible. Remember: 1) the recruiter is working to a strict deadline, and 2) the recruiter is evaluating if you fit the brief and if they think that the client will like you. Make their job easy by making yourself readily available for interview and ensure that they can tick all the job requirements quickly and easily. Recruitment consultants won’t put you on a shortlist if they think you might pull out at a later stage so be 100% positive about the role.

Public Sector Interviews

For public sector roles, there’ll be a fixed, openly-communicated timetable and a very structured process in the form of competency-based interviews. There’s no advantage to getting your application in early or being the first person interviewed. Competency-based interviews require a different mindset. Forget your CV; it’s all about providing evidence supporting a long list of ‘competencies’ specific to the job. These include hard skills (e.g. qualifications) as well as soft skills (e.g. multicultural sensitivity, flexibility and leadership).You must provide evidence for each and every competency. Find out what the required competencies are and have a prepared example for each one. Use the STAR technique – Situation, Task, Action, Result.

Large Corporations

Get your tailored CV and cover letter in there fast (either through a recruiter or directly) so that your application is one of the first they see. If they see someone good, large corporations will often fast track them through the process. You’re likely to have two or more interviews – the first with Human Resources, the second with a line manager. HR will have read your CV in detail and have a set of standard interview questions. Quite often, the line manager won’t have had time to prepare so the second interview may be less structured. You might be asked to go through your CV again – do it enthusiastically and know the information you want to communicate. Never underestimate your CV as a support tool – if it’s good, it can answer any question the interviewer throws at you.

Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs)

SME interviews are unpredictable – be ready for anything. You might be expecting to meet the Operations Manager but the MD could also pop in for a chat. You might get a test dropped on you at the last minute. You might even end up being offered a job at the first interview. You’re more likely to be interviewed by line managers, so technical skills and team fit are critical. It’s your job to build trust quickly and create a rapport. SMEs tend to hire on instinct, so if your personality wins them over then you’re a shoo-in.

Of course, there’s a lot more to interview success but I don’t have room to cover it all here. To really get an edge in interviews contact us to talk to a real career expert (meet the team) who can give you mock interview practise, get you prepared for the real thing.

Author: The Career Insider from Workthing+

Posted via email from AndyWergedal