DO

Research the organisation 

Most interviews will include a few questions about the organisation so make sure you’ve done your homework. Most candidates will have read the ‘about us’ section on the homepage so go a little deeper and find out about what the organisation has planned for the future. Understanding the company will also help you explain why you want to work there.  

Read the news

It’s quite common for interviewers to ask you whether you’ve read anything in the news recently that would impact on the work the organisation does. Be prepared by reading a few relevant articles and picking out stories relevant to the sector you’re applying for.

Find out about the interview

Find out as much as you can about the style of interview before it happens. How many people will be interviewing you? Who are they? Knowing these things will help you prepare and feel more relaxed on the day.

Dress appropriately

It’s always better to be overdressed than underdressed for an interview. Be smart and pay attention to detail by making sure you iron your shirt, wear smart shoes, wear subtle accessories etc.

Ask good questions

At the end of the interview, you’ll most likely be asked whether you have any questions. Make sure you are prepared for this by asking questions that also offer up some new information about yourself at the same time. For example, saying ‘I’m a keen runner, do you have any sports facilities on site?’ is far more effective than simply asking if there’s a staff gym. 

Be self aware

Think about your body language and the way you’re coming across on the day. Greet each interviewer individually, be positive, smile and make eye contact. This will make everyone feel more relaxed!

DON’T

Fill the silence

Interviewers will often pause once they think you have finished giving your answer to see whether you will keep talking to avoid a silence. Answer the question fully and to the best of your ability and then stop. Don’t be drawn in to carrying on as you will dilute your original answer.

Lie

The thing with telling a few white lies is that they always get found out in the end. Be honest and build a strong reputation for yourself as someone who always tells the truth and can be relied on.

Go empty handed

Take your letter of application and CV with you so you look prepared. If you’re worried about forgetting things or not getting your point across, take a few bullet points on reminder cards to help jog your memory if you get a bit stuck.

Talk too much

Answer all the questions fully but make sure you are not talking so much that you forget to listen. Listening carefully and understanding the questions properly will improve your answers.