Good advice for anyone having job interviews…
Viking employs over 1,300 people and operates in over 11 countries worldwide, so using our experience of internationally reaching recruitment and with the help of our HR departments, we’ve put together a guide to the formalities of the Skype interview and the tips on how to ace it!
- Make sure your profile name is professional
- Who’s calling who? Avoid confusion and decide beforehand
- Keep your Application Documents and Post-it Notes in front of you for prompts!
Preparation is the first essential step towards a successful interview. It’s normal to feel nervous because you want to do your best but if you prepare and practice you can get the better of your nerves and give yourself the best chance of getting the job.
The interviewers will expect you to have visited the company website beforehand and have a brief understanding of what the company does so it is important to be prepared.
Simple but regularly forgotten points
Make sure you know the exact location, time and date of the interview and the interviewer’s full name.
Always wear smart business clothes. Don’t dress casually, even if you know the company policy is relaxed.
Investigate specific, relevant facts about the company; where are their offices? What products and services do they offer? You should also research the company history and growth potential.
Refresh your memory about your current or former employment; what tasks did you do? What projects did you work on? What results did you achieve? You will be expected to be able to talk about this.
Think about what questions you want to ask the interviewers. Remember an interview is a two-way process, you should try to determine if the company will be a good fit for you and will provide the opportunity for growth and development.
For more advice about preparing for a face to face interview click here.
Follow two successful candidates journey’s though the VictoriaPlumb.com graduate interview process.
What to expect at an assessment day
Candidates were asked to bring an email they had received that made them open it and visit the website. Applicants had to prepare a short presentation about what was engaging and why they liked it. They were asked to write Meta descriptions for a SEO task, and finally, to complete a maths test on graphs and data.
Candidates were split into groups and asked to design a new product, rebrand the company and prepare a group presentation.
Two successful applicants shared their tips on successfully navigating your way through an assessment day and interview. Joe studied Politics and Parliamentary Studies at Leeds University and Josh studied Photography at Lincoln University.
Josh: I looked at the company and website, checked when it was founded, who the CEO was, the head office location and product information.
What to wear
Joe: Play it safe. Not too smart not too casual. Wear a shirt and suit without a tie and look professional.
Preparing your CV for the job
Josh: I had several CVs that were tailored for different skills, including one specifically for marketing. It showed my skills within digital and my understanding of websites. I spent most of my time getting the cover letter right. It’s important to show who you are and get your personality across.
How to make a good first impression
Josh: It’s important to be as polite as possible, friendly and have good manners. I’m not the most confident person but I decided to make the most of the day, relax and have a laugh.
Standing out in a group scenario
Joe: It’s important to listen to other people. Listening is a key skill; you can’t shout and talk over other people. Make sure you offer input, but only put good ideas forward. Relax and socialise with the group, and build rapport. Teamwork is essential for marketing, you need to realise that you’re not competing with the people in your group for the job.
Preparing for your final interview
Josh: I researched the job role in detail, and tried to give industry-related answers to common interview questions. It is important to get your personality across. Try to treat the interview as a conversation. A great tip is to learn your interviewer’s names so you already have an established connection.
How to exit an interview/assessment day
Joe: Relax and make sure you leave with a strong handshake. A nice comment such as: “I hope to see you again soon” is always welcome.
Josh: I skimmed through my online profiles, untagged any undesirable photos and made sure that all profanities were deleted. There’s no need to make your online profile private, as long as the content is clean.
Joe: Many people feel the need to stand out. Don’t be overbearing or try to control everything in the process.
Communicating by email
Josh: Proof read your emails before sending. The company see your emails before you, and this can be make or break. Make sure you’re professional through all communication.
USW Careers would like to thank Joe and Josh, VictoriaPlum.com, for sharing this advice.
Unilife Connect is the place to find graduate opportunities.
I recently read an article that stated that the first “employment questionnaire” was devised by Thomas Edison. Yep, THAT Thomas Edison, the inventor of the light bulb and other stuff, also came up with a set of interview questions to help him weed out unsatisfactory candidates. The questions, which included “What war material did Chile export to the Allies during the War?” and “Who was the Roman emperor when Jesus Christ was born?”, wouldn’t be used today, well not as far I know anyway, but you do on occasion get asked some curveball or unexpected questions that can knock your confidence for six. As someone who has been on both sides of the interview table, I have seen what seems to be the most simplest and innocent of questions throw someone completely and not just the “Are you more of a hunter or a gatherer?” type of question. Here’s what a few interviewers have to say…
On the whole, preparation is key for all interviews, but when the unexpected does happen all you can do is take a deep breath and do your best. It’s not always what you say, its how you’ve handled it that matters.
Personally, the most difficult question I’ve ever had is: “Why do you want this job?” One or two of my interviews have gone rapidly downhill after being asked this!
We would love to hear of any curveball questions you have been asked?
Who would win in a fight, Superman or Batman? Some of the crazy questions posed by employers during job interviews that leave candidates red-faced, Daily Mail article.
For more on interview questions:
Sharon (USW Careers)