Interview Tips & Best Practices

FOR THE CANDIDATE

FOR THE HIRING MANAGER

What advice can you give me as a candidate who is ‘casually looking’ for a new role?
  • Make sure that you always have an updated resume. You never know when the right opportunity might land in your lap!
  • Take that call with a recruiter! Worst-case scenario, it’s a 15-minute conversation for something that may not work at the time, but it makes that connection for the future.
  • Be open: to advice, coaching, and to jobs you may not have thought about.
How can I utilize my Linkedin to get noticed by recruiters?

Make sure that your LinkedIn profile is updated. Especially if you are Open to Work, this will help recruiters as well as hiring managers to make sure that you are the right fit.

What should my resume include?

Fine-tune your resume. Content over creativity wins here. It doesn’t need to be the best-looking, most well-designed piece of paper, but it does need to highlight the RESULTS and IMPACT you’ve been able to make in your previous roles. Wherever possible, use data to SHOW what you were able to do. And proofread, proofread, proofread! Your resume alone will not get you the job, but we see plenty of applicants get passed up because they lack attention to detail.

How can I stand out when I am blindly applying for a job?

Use a recruiter! We’re obviously biased here, but there are a lot of pros to working with a recruiter rather than just applying directly to the website where you hope your resume has enough keywords to make you stand out. Recruiters know the details of what’s NOT on the job description and you can get a lot more insight about the company and the role. You also have someone getting your foot in the door and advocating on your behalf.

Is it necessary to prepare for every interview?

Yes, prepare for your interviews. This doesn’t need to take hours, but show your interviewer that you’re actually interested in the opportunity. Look into the company ahead of time and prepare solid questions about the role, the company, the leadership, the product, etc. Highlight something that stood out to you in your research. Look up your interviewer’s LinkedIn profile and speak to their career path or ask what has made them successful at the company. 

It’s never. a waste of time because no matter how far along you get in the process, you are still growing personally and professionally.

What should I have prepared for an interview?
  • Find the company’s core values on its website. If they resonate with you, incorporate some of those themes into conversation during the interview.
  • Have your specific sales numbers or achievements readily available to reference.
  • Be prepared to answer “Why (Fill-in-the-blank: Company X)?” Know your reason for interviewing with the company.
  • Have 5-7 questions prepared for your interviewer.
How should I close out the interview?

Ask if the interviewer has any hesitations on moving you to the next steps. Address any concerns head-on.

Is there any post-interview work I should be doing?

Send a thank-you email. Follow-up and follow-through are critical skills in any role and almost every hiring manager is looking for it. For us and a lot of our clients, it’s a deal-breaker if you don’t send a thank you email post-interview. Keep it brief and focused on thanking them for their time, reiterating the value you can provide, and asking for the next steps. It takes 5 minutes tops and makes all the difference.

What should I have prepared for the interview?
  • Have a sufficient job description ready to go. Candidates are always asking for this!
  • Be sure to have a list of specifc questions that you are going over with every candidate.
How can I make the interview process more efficient?

Streamline your interview process. You can save your entire company time and money by creating a thoughtful interview process. Reduce it to the least amount of steps required to assess a candidate’s ability to succeed. And each interview should have a clear focus for the desired outcome. What does each interviewer need to assess? Is every candidate getting the same questions so you can objectively decide who should move to the next steps? Creating a thoughtful process will ensure quality hires and a great interview experience for both your team and your candidates. 

What should the interview look like?

Be conversational but maintain structure. Unstructured interviews may lead to wasted time and the need for additional (unnecessary) steps in the interview process.

How can I provide a positive interview experience for every candidate?

Be mindful of candidate experience. Yes, you’re spending your valuable time interviewing candidates, but so are they. If you expect a candidate to have done research into the company, you should spend a few minutes looking over their resume and familiarizing yourself with their skillset and experience. Especially in a job market that’s in the candidate’s favor, showing your interest in them sets the tone for what their experience could be like working with you and the company. 

How can I ensure that I am staying open-minded throughout the process?
  • Be open to candidates that may seem to be a little outside of the box. It never hurts to have that conversation to find out if they fit.
  • Be flexible. Ideas for the role and candidate may change with time, as well as the ‘requirements’!
Do I need to acknowledge every thank you message that I receive?

Yes, this will prove your interest in a qualified candidate, and showing your excitement can make a huge difference come offer time. We’ve seen candidates go with a company that expressed their excitement and interest over one that didn’t many times. Don’t lose out on quality talent on something easily avoidable. Reply to the thank you email or pick up the phone after an offer has been extended.