Prepare for the Interview

Prepare for the Interview

By Noelle Capobianco & Sophia Demetriades


Preparing for the interview 

Landing an interview is a great accomplishment after working so hard on your resume and cover letter. The interview is the opportunity to secure the job which is the ultimate aim. Therefore, you need to prepare for the interview wisely.


What to prepare for

It is extremely important that you prepare effectively for your interview that way you are not blindsided by any questions that come your way. The last thing you want to feel is uncertainty or awkward within an interview. So preparing wisely can prevent this.


Write a list of your strengths, talents and abilities that you can bring to the position. Read over the job posted and what they require. Tailor your skills and abilities to meet these requirements as a mechanism to secure the job. Write these down as a strategy to remember it for an interview for an effective response.


The first thing you want to do before an interview is research. Research everything. The company, the employer, what they do, what they specialise in. Everything.The more information you have regarding the company or agency, the greater your chances for a better response. Researching the company will allow you to tailor your talents and skills that are more fitting for the employer, company or agency. This will prepare you for the feel of the environment of the company or agency which will enable you to respond positively. It will also add substance to the interview and show the interviewer how serious you are about the position.


If you get stuck during preparation, a quick Google search will have dozens of general interview tips, questions and answers. Do not comply to what others have done, you need to answer the questions properly with TRUE examples from YOUR OWN life. They are hiring you, not a cheater who copied someone else hard work.


Bring the Paperwork

Dont forget to bring all the relevant documents to the interview. This will show the interviewer that you have initiative and you have great organizational skills. It will also provide the interviewer with more information through the documents you can provide. It will also add to your professionalism by bringing these documents with you that will impress the interviewer.


A Portfolio should always be taken. That is a professional and presentable folder containing:

  • Your most recent and perfectly edited RESUME
  • A COVER LETTER adjusted to the position in question
  • A Copy of your TRANSCRIPTS
  • A copy of any other course certificates
  • A copy of any REFERENCES and AWARDS
  • Prepared ANSWERS and QUESTIONS to typical interview questions


Make sure you prepare copies of these documents in case the interviewer wants to keep them to revise at a later date.


When you get there

Before you start the interview make sure you smile. No employer wants to hire someone that seems to have a negative mindset. So exude positivity starting with a smile.  Try not to figit and look the person in the eye when they are talking to you. When meeting the person always shake their hand whether it be a man or a woman. This is common courtesy within the workforce. It adds to your professionalism and starts of the interview process on a good note. A good handshake and a smile is something an employer will remember.


Questions and Answers

An interview usually takes 30 minutes to an hour.  The questions asked will range from short to open answers. The questions asked will be about your own talents, skills and abilities and how well you are suited to the role. Many interviewers stick with common questions, such as “Why should we hire you for this position?”, or “What are your strengths and weaknesses?” “What can you offer”, or “How do you act in X situation (demonstrate)”? Therefore, being prepared will pay off so you can answer these questions readily and comfortably.


When answering questions, answer slowly. Always try to incorporate what value you can add to them through your own personal attributes and experiences. Remember what the company is looking for and what the role entails. By remembering this you can foir your responses more effectively. Answer honestly, by recalling true experiences and personal attributes that are fitting and relevant to the role. Answer questions positively. Let the interviewer see you in a positive light. Emphasize your strengths and play on these to your advantage. Try to turn your weaknesses to your strengths so the employer can see the silver lining.


YOUR Questions to ask

One of the most important opportunities that many students pass up is the chance to ask questions at the end of the interview. Almost all interviewers give you a chance to ask a question. Not having a question prepared will make you seem uninterested in the position and this can lower your chances of securing the job. Using the research you prepared about the company and industry, ask specific questions such as “What makes your company stand out from its competitors” or how was the company initially established. You can also make the interview more personal by asking the interviewer why they chose to come to work for the company, or if there are any specific goals the company is currently planning for and how you fit in with those. Again, Google can help you generate ideas on dozens of questions to ask.

Spending time before your interview to organize your documents, answers, and questions will ensure that you will show confidence, professionalism, and preparation. When your interviewer sees your interest in the position, you have a much better chance of making it to the next round.


Interview Strategy – Surround Effects

The Internet and Information Age has made recruiting much more impersonal. Within many organisations and companies, resumes are actually screened through keyword-finding software and resumes that do not match the keywords are immediately discarded. Online application systems can sometimes feel like throwing your resume like boomerang that never returns.

If you really want an interview, you will have to find creative ways to get noticed, and you must not give up. You need to make sure that you stand out form the crowns through utilising strategic approaches.


Some ways to stand out include:


1. Inside Contacts

They say it not what you know, its who you know. This is true. One of the most effective and easiest ways of getting an interview is to know someone that already works for the organization. If you don’t already know someone at the firm, find ways to introduce yourself. Network with friends and family. Even the most remote connection can open a door. Have coffee across the road from the office you want to work for and examine the people that already work there. Attend events, seminars or workshops that the company that you aspire to work at as a mechanism to start networking. Networking is one of the greatest ways to immediately score an interview and seems to still be effective.


2. Send in a Hard Copy Resume with your signature in a blank white envelope with a handwritten address to the Director.

Most jobs are not advertised. Show you are valuable and interested by sending in a hard copy to your desired company, agency or organisation. Sending your resume in with a signature confirmation required can ensure that someone in the office actually accepts the letter as it lands literally in their face. There is no guarantee it will reach the hiring director, but your resume will definitely be differentiated as it will ensure you are remembered. This will demonstrate your persistency, initiative and determination which will impress potential employers.


3. Show up in person

Organisations, companies, and employers receive thousands of online resumes at one time. By showing up at the company in person and walking into the office to speak with a Human Resources Manager about the position in question will make you remembered. Of course, be sure you have your folder with your resume and supporting documents whilst being completely prepared. Your resume will now have a face and personality behind it instead of just another piece of paper. Make sure you look and smell nice, drink plenty of water and be well rested. Smile and give yourself a pep talk prior to walking in the door.


Do not rely on one strategy alone to get the interview. By finding multiple ways to stand out from the crowd, you will maximize your chances of landing that interview, and ultimately, the job.


Remember, most jobs are not advertised, so entering a company – large or small, with a positive attitude and confidence asking for job, might just be the strategy that works for you.

Alternatively, you can call DIA today and we will help you work out a strategy or provide you with an internship program suitable to your needs.



DIA assists interns in preparing them for job interviews through workshops. DIA trains interns through a practice interview which addresses typical interview questions and answers whilst working on impressive and strategic techniques to land the job.


DIA love being the first to congratulate a successful candidate! Call us when you land the job and receive a free gift.

Good Luck

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