Being prepared and doing the most important interview preparation tips in Ireland can really make a lot of difference in your interview performance.
According to a Jobvite 2017 Recruiting Funnel Benchmark Report, an average of five interviews are conducted by recruiters before offering the job to a candidate.
With an average of 1.4% job vacancy rates across all industries in Ireland in the fourth quarter of 2021, it can be expected that there is significant competition, especially for professional and high-paying jobs. So how do you make sure that you beat out the competition and get the coveted job offer?
H-Training is a dedicated firm that specializes in developing and empowering the professional workforce through strategic consultancy and systematic coaching.
Ciarán Hourican, managing director of H-Training and certified coach and mentor by the Institute of Leadership and Management, has helped thousands of professionals land their dream jobs and now he’s sharing some of his expert tips on how to prepare for an interview.
In 2017, statistics show that only 1 in 6 job applicants get an interview. Now that you secured an interview and have made it this far, you must be asking yourself, “how can I prepare for an interview?’
According to Indeed.com, the average time spent preparing for an interview is between 5 to 10 hours. In order to make the most of your time, make sure to space out your interviews across different days so you’ll have ample time to prepare for each one.
Whether you’re preparing for a management interview or preparing for a PR interview or any type of interview these interview preparation tips will work well for any job position in any sector.
1. Research the company.
Get to know more about the company you could potentially work for. Most interviews begin by asking you what you already know about the company, so make a good impression by showing how interested you are in working for this company.
More than reading and absorbing the “About Us” section of the company’s website, try to find out more about them by looking through recent news, share prices, annual reports, and other details.
Make sure to take note of the company’s mission, vision, values, and culture to assess how much of these align with your career goals and values.
2. Review the job description and requirements.
Allocate some time to look up the job posting so you can go through the job requirements and specifications once again. During your interview preparation, try to remember these details so you can show how much you fit the role by recalling instances in your past employment experiences wherein you fulfilled similar tasks, reached similar goals, or hit similar targets.
Try to access how much your qualifications, experience, and values align with the job specifications, so you can evaluate the likelihood that you would be chosen to fill the role.
Furthermore, if you have any questions about the job while going through the job posting, write them down so you can ask these questions during the interview.
3. Familiarize yourself with the details of your CV
You’d be surprised how many times interviewees would forget the details of their CV during the interview so make sure to remember the important details and dates so you can answer confidently when asked.
Your CV is what got you the interview so expect that the interviewer would want to hear more details about your work experience and job history. If you don’t feel confident about remembering everything, you can write some notes down or highlight important information so you can easily glance at your CV during the interview.
What Questions to Prepare for Job Interview
Anticipating some of the questions that you will be asked during the interview and preparing your answers are the main parts of your interview preparation.
Part of H-training’s Interview Coaching services is practising answering questions effectively so you can communicate your competitive advantage and your competencies that will make an impact on the interviewer.
Interviews have different types and styles, but it’s important to be prepared for all types. Here are some of the common questions to prepare for a phone interview, face-to-face interview, or video interview.
1. Tell me about yourself.
This question is a great opportunity to sell yourself. Start by telling the interviewer what your current role is and what tasks you’re in charge of. Describe your recent achievements and new skills you’ve mastered.
You can then move on to describe your past roles and successes that relate to the current role you’re aiming for and end your answer with your future goals and what is it about the role or company that makes you excited for your future career.
2. Why do you want to work here?
This is where your research about the company will play a role in. Since it is a pretty standard question for most interviews, your interviewer would expect that you are prepared to answer this question.
So, make it a coherent and confident answer that shows enthusiasm and deep knowledge about the company. Make sure to mention and go into detail about how the company’s goals or vision align with yours, and why you admire the company culture.
Furthermore, discuss how you can use your knowledge, skills, and training to fulfill the role you are applying for, and how it would help you further your career in your chosen profession.
3. What are your strengths and weaknesses?
Interview preparation involves listing your strengths and weaknesses so you can impressively answer this common interview question. As tempting as it is to exaggerate your strengths and minimize your weaknesses, keep your answers as professional and truthful as you can. Do not give generic answers and make sure to add details.
For your strengths, make sure to review the job description and craft an answer that will align your real strengths with the role you’re applying for. For instance, when preparing for a PR interview, don’t just say you’re good at socializing, instead mention that you’re adept at building long-term relationships with clients, media personalities, and teammates. Include some details on the connections and networks that you’ve built throughout your career.
For your weaknesses, a common answer for most interviewees would be to express strength as a weakness. For instance, when preparing for a management interview, most people would say being a perfectionist or too detail-oriented is their weakness.
Although those are acceptable answers, make sure that you are being truthful, as your interviewer can tell if you’re just saying that to make a good impression. Try to think of a real weakness that has been holding you back in your previous roles and think of the proactive ways that you are trying to improve yourself. This shows your ability to overcome your shortcomings and your willingness to improve and learn.
Self-awareness is a great trait to have when assessing your strengths and weaknesses. If you want to delve deep and analyse yourself better, H-Training’s professional Career Coaching service is perfect for you. Get clear on career goals and preferences, strengths and weaknesses, qualifications and experiences, and map the perfect development path to grow in your chosen career.
4. Describe your ideal job.
Be truthful but professional. Make sure to include the specifics of the job you’re applying for in your answer to emphasize your enthusiasm to work for them. Always connect your answer to the job vacancy to communicate that you will be motivated and satisfied when you do get the role.
If you’re unsure what you want for your ideal job, H-Training’s Career Guidance For Adults In Ireland is the perfect way for you to be clear about the professional career that suits you best.
Whether you want to move up your current career path, or transition to a completely different career, this service can help you find your ideal job based on your personality, values, motivators, interests, ideal work environment, and others.
5. Why are you leaving your current job?
No matter what happened in your current job, whether you were fired or you quit because of a poor work environment and compensation, do not make it sound like you are bad-mouthing your former employer.
Reframe your answers in a way that the focus is on your need to grow, learn, and succeed and not the limitations of the job. Furthermore, if you’ve been fired for something you’ve done wrong, it’s best to let them know along with the reason as to why. Immediately describe how the incident helped you grow and made you more accountable for your actions.
Interview Preparation on the Eve of Your Interview Day
The night before the big interview is crucial for your interview preparation. This is when you get to condition your mind for what’s coming, so you will be best prepared the next day. Here are some tips you can do:
1. Practice your speaking voice.
Hit two birds with one stone by practicing your prepared answers to common questions out loud in front of the mirror or with someone you’re comfortable with.
This way, you get to refresh your memory with your answers and you get to evaluate your speaking voice and your body language. Make a good impression by showing confidence through your posture, open body language, and eye contact.
Interviews can be nerve-wracking, knowing more about yourself, how you react to stressors, and how you express yourself can help you tremendously in making a good impression in interviews.
Try H-Training’s Emotional Intelligence Assessment to help you understand yourself better and create a well-suited action plan to further your career.
2. Prepare questions you would ask.
Interview preparation is not complete without formulating the questions you would like to ask the interviewer. At the end of the day, it’s not just them making a decision to hire you.
You would also have to decide if it’s the right role and company for you, so ask relevant questions that will help you make better decisions.
3. Print copies of your CV.
Although the interviewer would normally have a copy of your CV, it’s best to be prepared.
Make sure you keep your copy with notes and highlights and do not hand that copy to your interviewer.
4. Know your route.
Part of your interview preparation is to make sure you will get to the place on time so plan your route and the time you would leave the night prior to the interview.
If the location is unfamiliar to you, research it online. Look at the street map to find the nearest parking area or public transport stop. Have their phone number ready on your phone so you can call in case you get lost or you’re running late.
Need More Comprehensive Interview Preparation Tips?
A survey by Glassdoor suggests that on average, corporate job vacancies receive 250 CVs. Out of the 250, only 5 or 6 gets an interview, and only one of them is hired for the job. According to Ireland’s Central Statistics Office, there were 23,500 job vacancies in various industries in the private sector in Ireland in the last quarter of 2021, while there were 5,100 in the public sector.
Your dream job is out there waiting for you. All you need is a little help to get there and beat the competition. Learn expert tips on how to prepare for an interview straight from industry leaders and master career coaches on H-Training’s Interview Coaching course.
It is designed to improve your chances of success by guiding you on how to present yourself and communicate your narrative in a way that emphasizes your competitive advantage personably and supportively.
Check out more specialized services like Interview board training, and corporate group interview training. Improve your sales skills and land the sales job that you want with the Sales Training course facilitated by sales leaders and industry experts. Develop your skills and realize your potential with H-training now.