STAFFORD-SHARP ASSOCIATES have secured you your Interview, what’s next – here are our 5 top tips for preparing for interview
1. Do your research: Fail to plan, and you plan to fail. You are certain to be asked specific questions about the company, so make sure you've done your homework on things like their core products or market sectors. Also take a look at the latest developments in the industry so you can converse with confidence. It is also essential you plan your route prior to interview ensuring you plan for delays, ensure you take contact numbers of the interviewer or recruitment consultant if you should get delayed. Remember Murphy's law. If it can go wrong - it will. Don't leave anything to chance.
2. Practice your answers: Although there is no set format that every job interview will follow, there are some questions that you can almost guarantee will crop up. You should prepare answers to questions about your personal strengths and weaknesses, as well as being able to explain why you would be the best person for the job.
3. Look the part: Appearances shouldn't matter, but the plain fact is that you are often judged before you've even uttered a word. Make sure your shoes are polished, your clothes fit correctly and that your accessories are subtle. Dressing one level above the job you're applying for shows a desire to succeed.
4. Stay calm: Good preparation is the key to staying in control. Get everything you need to take with you ready the night before and get a good nights sleep. Remember Listen, Listen, Listen. You have two ears and one mouth. Don't interrupt. If you think of something important, make a note immediately and come back to it later. Remember to speak clearly, smile and remember that your interviewers are just normal people, and they may be nervous too!
5. Ask questions: You should always have some questions for your interviewer to demonstrate your interest in the position. Prepare a minimum of five questions, some which will give you more information about the job, and some which delve deeper into the culture and goals of the company.
The object of your CV is to make sure that you secure an interview of your choice. It also serves as a prompting tool during the interview.
A CV in the IT world needs to do the business quickly and to the point - but you need depth too. Sure, it must be possible to skim over the document to get a flavour - but it must also be possible to read into some detail.
Did you know that around 80% of CVs, don't do the job of conveying exactly what roles the candidate is suitable for? Take a long hard look at your CV and turn it into a document that works. Make sure that it says exactly what you do on the tin.
Who invented the two page CV? Certainly not us or our clients. Technology CVs should be like a small chapter - easy to flick through but detail when you want it.
So you are capable of more than one role in industry? Have 2 x CVs! Don't lie, but be specific on your CV. One CV could be your technical document and one CV for your management experience. Apply for roles with the most appropriate CV.
Tell the story from today - and go backwards. This is reverse chronological order. Use employer names, dates and the functional title that you accomplished along with the hardware, software and skills you utilised. You may have been called the "Global IT Manager", but if your job was actually doing 2nd & 3rd line support for a 4 branch, 50-man business - make up a title that's appropriate.
Structure your CV with plenty of white space. Don't use 5mm margins and tiny font sizes. Think about business documents - they have plenty of headings, bullet points and white space. Copy what works.