Speaking and listening skills
Even though this sounds simple, speaking and listening is a skill. We sometimes don’t listen to the question being asked and can answer incorrectly or go down a different path. An example of this is when the interviewer says ‘So, tell me a little bit about you.’ In an interview situation, you might think it’s right to respond by talking about your work history and qualifications. However, this question is asking about YOU. Your interviewer wants to hear about your interests, likes/ dislikes, hobbies. Make sure you listen to what is being asked before answering.
Researching the company
Before attending any job interview or completing an application, you need to research the company and familiarise yourself with their mission, values and company strategy. This shows the interviewer you’re interested in the company as you have made the effort to prepare.
Researching the company also benefits you as your can tailor your responses to suit as you know what they’re looking for. This will help you feel more confident if they quiz you on your company knowledge. Furthermore, understanding their values will help you decide whether the company is a good cultural fit.
Researching the job role
You need to have a thorough understanding of the job role you’re applying for and what’s required. It might help speaking to someone in that department who can help explain the role in more detail. Also, work experience can give you a practical insight into different roles, so you know what to expect before applying. This means you will have hands-on experience to talk about in an interview. Remember, you also have the internet at your disposal where you can research any job in depth. Take the time to understand the different responsibilities involved so you can make sure the role is suited to you.
References are extremely important and gives your future employer an insight into your previous work and experience. When it comes to choosing references there are a few key tips you should follow:
How to ask someone to be a reference
You can ask someone to be a reference by phone, email or letter if you’re unable to meet in person. Start by making a list of who you would like to be your references (employers usually ask for two or three) then contact them in order of preference. Make sure you follow the steps below when approaching references for a job application:
When a company will approach your reference
References are very important, and many HR departments will contact your references during pre-employment screening. That’s why it’s so important to choose your references carefully and make sure you have provided their current contact details. There are a few different times when hiring managers could choose to contact your references:
Application forms will usually give you the option to select when is a good time to contact your references. This gives you time to speak to your current boss and hand in your notice.