The Job Interview Information you really need

You need the right job interview information. Research is such an obvious idea it almost doesn’t seem right talking about it on a site about interview tips. Except of course that a lot of people still don’t bother doing it.

It may seem easy to take research lightly, especially if you feel like you are a strong candidate. They will be interested in your skills and what you can do, right? Well yes, but remember they are interviewing you in the first place because they believe you have the skills. That’s a given. Doing your homework shows something else just as impressive: you have a genuine interest in the company.

What job interview information does for you

• The interviewer will pick up on your knowledge as indication of your commitment, professionalism and enthusiasm. Just the kind of positive character traits you need to create to succeed in interview.

• Research allows you to identify what the employer values and what they want from the person they hire – the match they are looking for. This gives you the opportunity to work on presenting yourself so you fit as closely as possible.

• Understanding the company and role allows you to better prepare your answers, and to prepare your own questions, as part of a winning interview strategy.

Not convinced? One of the biggest turnoffs for employers is a lack of interest in the company. Make sure you do your homework.

There are no excuses. With all the tools you have at your disposal nowadays it is easier than ever to get your hands on the job interview information you need. The trick is knowing what to know.

So what do you need to do?

Those candidates who show knowledge, and interest in a company have a real opportunity to set themselves apart. This will always impress the interviewer. There are three types of research you need to carry out to give a great performance:

• General knowledge about the company

• What the role involves

• The company culture

General Company Information

1. What is the company’s core business activity?

2. Who are their competitors?

3. Who are their customers?

4. What is the financial performance in recent years?

5. What challenges do they face as a business?

6. How are they structured?

7. What is the company mission statement?

Knowing this type of information helps you appear interested and motivated. They are also questions you ought to consider before thinking about joining any organisation. By understanding the company you can think about your potential role and how you will add value.

Where can you find this company information?

Get hold of the company’s annual report. Look on the internet or in the library to find articles about the company. For additional information, or if the company doesn’t have a website, try logging on to newspapers, where you can look through news archives.

If you are dealing with a recruitment consultant they will be armed with a host of information about the company, the interview process and the interviewer. Use your consultant! Don’t be shy about asking, find out everything they know as the information could be priceless. Remember it is in their interests to give you all the help you need. If they don’t they won’t get a placement fee, so they should be willing to tell all you need to know.

What Job Information will you need?

1. The scope of the position (where do you fit in?)

2. Why the position came about

3. Who you will report to?

4. The objectives of the role (What do they want you to achieve? /what problem must be solved?)

5. What are the key responsibilities of the role? (how will you fulfil your objectives on a daily basis)?

6. What are the core competencies of the role? (what are the key skills you need to demonstrate?)

7. What kind of experience would be useful in the role (what do you need to show you have done?)

8. What type of personality suits the role/team (what kind of people are they? What kind of person will rise to the unique challenges of this role?)

Ask the HR manager or your Recruitment consultant for a job description and see the original job ad you applied to. It will be full of useful information about the position and the department.

Some job interview information can be a little harder to come by, particularly regarding the personalities within the team. It is worth the extra effort though.

Think about how your skills and experience fit your new role. How will you describe your experiences to cover what the interviewer is looking for? The questions you are asked will be based around the duties and skills involved in performing the job, so you can begin to think about your answers based on this.

Company Culture

Companies’ are looking for people who will fit in. The more you know about their way of doing things the better you will be able to show you can fit in.

1. What is the company’s mission statement?

2. What is the management style?

3. What are the company values?

4. What type of people fit in and excel?

So where can you get this information?

You might be able to get some of this information from the annual reports and newspaper articles you find, but the profile of your future manager is harder to get hold of. Talk to HR or your recruitment consultant. Though it is harder to come by, it’s worth it. It will give you a great indicator of what to expect and can help you decide if this is the opportunity for you. Do the culture and the management style fit what you are looking for? After all, if not it is better to be aware now.

The Final Word

Show your interest

The kind of interest that you have actually bothered to act upon! Believe me when I say most candidates do not do their homework and it counts against them.

Do it now!

Don’t try and cram the information at the last minute. It puts you under pressure. One of the secrets to a good interview performance is to perform confidently, without pressure. So start now, do your research and get the job interview information you need. Today.

When you’re armed with job interview information you’ll find your confidence in yourself increases. You’ll know what the interviewer is looking for from you. Now you you’ve just got to show them that you’re it!

Learn about how an informational interview can help you in your research

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