Interview Preparation Tips

Posted 10 July 2017

You have perfected your CV and cover letter and are now at the point where you have secured an interview. This is the final step between you and a new position but it is the most important part of the process. You now have to show the hiring panel that you are the best candidate for the job. Cranmore Recruitment specialises in finding excellent candidates for executive roles, and here are our 5 tips for preparing for your interview:


This seems obvious but you would be surprised at how many candidates do not research the role and company they are applying to. Before your interview, you must make sure that you can confidently discuss the prospective company and their needs in detail. Make sure you have kept the job description and criteria saved, and remind yourself how you meet the essential conditions for the role. In this digital age, there should be a wealth of information about the company online, so there is no excuse not to do some research. Where possible go that one step further and contact anyone you know who already works for the company, or has done in the past. If you know who is interviewing you then look up their LinkedIn profile and any articles or news stories that there may be about them. Any press releases, statistics, facts, and information about the company’s main competitors are very useful.


It may sound superficial but first impressions count and if you want to be seen as the best candidate then you should look the part. Make sure you understand the dress code and take the necessary steps to look as well presented as possible. Make the effort to iron your clothes and shine your shoes if applicable. Body language is also very important so make sure that you look confident, prepared and focused. If you have not been to the interview location before, either look up Streetview online or do a dry run to find it if possible. Leave yourself plenty of time to get there and aim to be about 15 minutes ahead of your interview slot, if you are late you will be flustered and will give a bad impression. Make sure your mobile phone is turned off, as even on vibrate it may distract you during the interview. When entering the interview room, shake hands confidently and introduce yourself. It is worth bringing some fresh copies of your CV for the panel and to prompt you if necessary.


There is a range of questions that could be asked in your interview, some more common than others. Many interviews are competency based which means you are not required to discuss your career history at length but you will be asked specific questions about your capabilities such as your teamwork ability or how you cope under pressure. It is important to be prepared for these questions as well as the more traditional ones. Before the interview think of some examples in your career of how you worked as a team to reach a common goal, how you dealt with differences or setbacks, and how you deal with deadlines and pressure. The more prepared you are the more comfortable and confident you will feel when answering, and you will be less likely to have a mind blank under pressure. Practise speaking as clearly and precisely as you can and make sure your examples are easy for the panel to understand. You may also be asked about your biggest achievements and where you see yourself in 2-5 years’ time, so think of answers that show how you are wanting to progress within this company.


When your interview is over make sure that the panel is aware that you are genuinely interested in this opportunity and that you would like to be considered for the role, even if you are not 100% sure about whether you want the job. If you have any questions about the role or the company then ask them at this point, otherwise, it is ok to simply ask when the panel will be making their decision and what the next step is eg will they be doing second interviews.


None of us likes or wants to be seen as too keen or too pushy, but it is perfectly acceptable to email the interviewer thanking them for their time and the opportunity straight after the interview. You can reiterate your interest in the position and that you look forward to hearing from them. You are unlikely to get a reply, but it will show the recruiters that you have good manners and that you are good at networking and following up with people.


Looking for your next Executive recruitment role? Contact the experts at Cranmore today on 0333 0110 573 or

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