Unfortunately many job seekers make errors in their job interview which cost them the opportunity of being hired. This is particularly true for those that have been out of work for some time. These tips, if followed, should offer you the best opportunity of getting the job or at the very least receiving the consideration you deserve if your background and skills are a match for the opening.
1. Interview with a temp firm or staffing organization prior to interviewing with an employer.
These interviews are relatively easy to get and are good practice. You don't want to go to your first interview in a long time and make easily correctable mistakes. Every job interview you have will make the next one easier. A "bad" job interview, one in which you gave poor answers to questions asked, should be a learning experience. Register with the temp firm as they could place you with one of their clients.
2. Get information on the perspective employer prior to your interview.
Research the employer using a search engine to see who their customers are, learn more about their products or services, and examine the company culture. Try to find someone at the employer and network with this individual. A CareerXroads survey found that referred candidates have a 31-to-1 chance of getting hired, vs. a 500-to-1 chance for candidates that come via other means.
3. Revise and update your resume.
Go to a professional or resume service as the resume you used years ago is no longer appropriate. You should also have your resume on your computer so you can modify it, highlighting the experience appropriate for the job you are seeking. A single general resume for all interviews is not the best way to get hired. Click here for resume writing help.
4. Even if you are interested in full-time work, consider starting on a project basis.
When applying for a job, tell the employer you are willing to start working as a consultant or on a project basis; this often gives you a leg up on workers who are often unable to accept these kinds of employment. Temporary employment or working on a consultative basis can often lead to full-time work. Check here for resources for executives, professionals and managers interested in project assignments.
5. If you are in-between jobs volunteer with a charity or nonprofit.
Although in most cases there is little or no monetary compensation, it is often excellent experience and can possibly lead to employment with an employer that is seeking that particular experience or appreciates your work ethic. It is also easier to find employment while you are working, as you have a better mind set. For information on volunteering click here.
6. Assess your situation today versus years ago.
Below are some questions you might ask yourself in preparation for a job interview.
- What do I want?
- What are my values?
- Do I need to make a difference or make big bucks?
- What are my core strengths?
7. Plan your interview and be prepared to present yourself.
Be conversant with the work you've done as it relates to the position and, practice explaining this with a friend or family member before your next interview.
Don't be concerned that employers are not interested in you. Interview as if you are the best candidate for the job.