How to succeed at interview

By Rebecca Crowther
Posted on

So you’ve got an interview coming up… it’s not easy to stand out from the crowd in today’s busy job market but you’ve done it! Now it’s time to prepare but don’t worry we have put together a 4 step guide on how to succeed at interview.

Before you do anything else you need to recognise that being invited for an interview is an achievement and realise that, even if your application doesn’t go any further this time, you’ve clearly got a strong selling point. Being properly prepared is going to pay off massively!

4 Step Guide: How to Succeed At Interview

1 – The Interview Process

Get yourself in the right frame of mind by becoming comfortable with what to expect from the interview. This is straightforward information but if you forget to think about it you could come unstuck. Do you know where the interview is and who it’s with? Have you got a route planned and do you know how long it takes to get there? What format is the interview going to be; may there be aptitude or technical tests?

how to succeed at interview | ASC Connections

2 – Understand the Job

You need to be confident that you understand exactly what they’re looking for so you can demonstrate how you’re a good match. It’s a mistake to assume you know this based on a job title or a description so take some time to study the job description properly. Have a few thoughtful questions to ask about the job such as where it may take you within the company.

3 – Research the Company

How do you feel when someone pays interest in you? Good, right? Do the same in your interview. Companies want to hire people that they believe really want to work with them and will therefore stick with them. Find out as much as you can about their business and have a few good questions to ask. Maybe found out a little about the manager too – it won’t hurt.

4 – Be Yourself

This one probably sounds a bit odd. Surely you know yourself? Well let’s hope so! But step outside the box and think about how you look to someone else. Are there gaps on your CV that you need to explain? Are you going to be asked to talk about something you only mentioned as an aside? It will be really embarrassing for you if you can’t answer a question about yourself!

Trust us on this advice! You will interview very rarely throughout your career but as recruitment professionals we interview candidates and receive feedback from hiring managers every day so, with that in mind, here are a few other things we’d suggest:

  • Arrive a little early – yes, you’ll be seen as punctual but there’s another benefit in that you’ll give yourself more time to relax and get in the right frame of mind.
  • If you have a question you can’t find the answer to then just ask them. They really will appreciate your interest.
  • Maintain positive body language throughout your interview and start by greeting your interview with a handshake and a smile! You’ll also want to remember that managers often ask colleagues what their impressions were of you too so be polite and friendly to anyone else you speak to starting with the receptionist!
  • Lastly, make sure to follow up the next day with a simple email thanking them for their time and reaffirming your interest in the role.

Hopefully you have found the how to succeed at interview guide useful and it brings you success at interview.

If you’re looking for an answer to a question that will help you advance your career? Why not contact us and talk to one of our team who will be happy to discuss your needs.

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How to write a good CV

By Rebecca Crowther
Posted on

Can you write a good CV?

When you apply for a job, the first and maybe only thing that a hiring manager or recruitment professional is going to see from you is your CV.  Therefore, this is your chance to tell them who you are, what you’ve done before and what you can do for them – so the question is can you write a good CV?

Did you know that the average amount of time spent reviewing a CV is less than 10 seconds?

It makes sense to maximise on this document and here’s a really simple way to do just that! Write out your CV as you would anyway, then take what you have and put it into three distinct sections: About you, your work history and your education and skills.

To find out if you can write a good CV follow our simple CV structure below and we’re sure the answer will be yes!

About you:

  • Have you put your name and not ‘CV’ as the title of your CV?
  • Are all your contact details clear?
  • Have you written a short personal statement?
  • Does it use keywords about your skills and experience?

Your work history:

  • Have you put it in reverse chronological order?
  • Is the job title clear?
  • Did you make it obvious exactly how long you worked there? Include the month!
  • Describing your responsibilities is great but have you listed your achievements?

can you write a good cv? ASC Connections

Your education and skills:

  • Is your education listed in the order of highest award first?
  • Have you grouped together school-level qualifications? (But specify English, Maths and Science!)
  • Have you included non-academic qualifications or skills? Languages? First aid?
  • If they show genuine achievements or responsibilities have you included hobbies/interests?

Finally, if you can make sure you’ve done all these things then you’ll have a CV that’s ready to be put in front of even the most experienced eyes. When you’re ready to go, follow these extra top tips:

  • Get someone else to read it and ask for their opinion!
  • Spell check won’t show you when the word is spelled correctly but not the right word (in/inn, of/off or to/too)
  • Have you thought about the appearance? Use bullet points and spacing to highlight what’s important!
  • Use one, professional font in one size throughout – and not comic sans!

Don’t forget to search through our jobs and send us your CV so we can contact you with the latest job opportunities that match what you are looking for.

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