Preparing for job interviews is probably the most important aspect. Do this right and you will breeze through it, go unprepared and you will fail miserably. Preparing for a job interview means getting your mind right and feeling confident. Remember you are the best person for the job. You just have to show them that.
Firstly, do some research on the company and its products, know who their customers are, and what the companyís objective is. Once you have this information, then make a list of what skills or knowledge you have that would be valuable to them. You cannot sell yourself to them if you donít know what it is you are selling.
Next thing to prepare is your physical appearance. You have to dress right for job interviews. Donít wear anything too flashy. Neat and clean are more important than the latest fashion. The aim is to look professional without overdoing it. If you are not comfortable with a shirt and tie, it might be best not to wear one, unless the job will require you to dress this way. It is important that you feel comfortable. The last thing you have to do is to be worried about your appearance during the interview. It will only make you nervous and you will quickly lose confidence.
Finally, work out what you need to take with you. A copy of your résumé, originals (and copies) of your qualification papers, copies of references, samples of your work (if applicable) and anything else that they may want to see. Again make sure everything is well-organized and neatly presented. Donít take a pile of paperwork that you have to look through for ten minutes to find something, that will give them the impression that you are disorganized. If you can make your prospective employers get a good impression of you and your working potential that meets their requirements, then, you will get the job.
An interview is a formal meeting between a candidate and people from the company. In this situation, the candidate is the interviewee and the representatives of the company are the interviewers. After an interview, the interviewers will follow up the references of promising candidates. To do this they ask for a letter about the candidate from a previous employer (or a tutor, in the case of a recent graduate). Once this process has been completed, the interviewers need to select the best candidate for the job and offer him or her the post. The candidate will then accept, or turn down the job offer.
When the person has been officially appointed (given the job), an employment contract is signed, agreeing the working conditions and salary. If you are an interviewee you should do the following in advance:
v research the organization
v read the job description carefully
v think about the questions you may be asked, and plan your responses
v be ready to talk about your career, both past and future
v be prepared to explain why you think you are suitable for the job
Below are some questions that are frequently asked in job interviews:
Why do you seek a job with this company?
v What information do you have about our company?
v What do you think you can bring to this job?
v What changes would you implement if you got this job?
v How would you feel about relocating to another city (working in a very small team? training courses?)
v Could you tell us something about your responsibilities in your last job? (about your experience of dealing with difficult client? about your long term goals?)
v What would you say are your strengths/weaknesses?
v What do you see yourself doing in 5 years?
v How do you see yourself developing personally?
When you apply for a job or wish to continue your education, you are likely to be asked to present your resume, or CV (curriculum vitae). This document may prove crucial for your future, so special attention should be paid to the appropriate style.
What should a resume look like? First, it ought to be easy to read: not too much material crammed on a page, easily headings, and, if you prefer, short phrases rather than full sentences. Second, it ought to give your vital statistics: your name, address. Third, the resume ought to suggest where you are headed professionally (perhaps in a section called "Qualification and Experience", including education and work experience, or two sections titled "Work Experience" and "Education").
The ordering of information is important in the section on qualification and experience. Generally, you want to put your most relevant and impressive qualification list. If you have a lot of relevant work experience you should list that before your educational experience. If you have only a little work experience, you will have to emphasize your education and its special features.
What makes you different from any other student with your degree? Have you had any specific research? Do you have a number of honours and extracurricular activities? You might want to highlight them in a separate section titled "Honours and Activities", since such features show that you are enough organised to handle several activities at one time.
Finally, you need a section titled "References", which either states that references are available on request or lists your references' names (and addresses), if these are particularly impressive. Before you list someone as a reference, ask the person if he or she is willing to serve in this role. It is impolite and potentially disastrous to list people without their approval.
A resume may be the one item that gets you an offer for a job interview. It is the first impression the employer will have of you. Your qualifications, your experiences, and the way you organize and present yourself on paper will be determining factors when choosing you over all the other applicants for consideration. And, you may not have a second chance; consequently, the resume as to be your ęticketĽ in the door.
A resume is a summary of your qualifications and experience and will be used as a sales device to honestly sell your skills more effectively than other applicants sell theirs.
There are two kinds of resumes: chronological and skills. A chronological resume summarizes what you did in a time line (starting with the most recent events and going backwards in reverse chronology). It emphasizes degrees, job titles, and dates. Use a chronological resume when:
a) your education and experience are a logical preparation for the position for which youíre applying;
b) you have impressive job titles, offices, or honors.
A skills resume emphasizes the skills youíre used, rather than the job in which or the date when you used them. Use a skills resume when:
a) your education and experience are not the usual route to the position for which youíre applying;
b) you want to combine experience from paid jobs, activities or volunteer work, and courses to show the extent of your experience in administration, finance, speaking, and so on;
c) you lack impressive job titles, offices, or honors;
d) your recent work history may create the wrong impression.
Although the resume is a factual document its purpose is to persuade. In a job application form or an application for graduate or professional school, you answer every question even if the answer is not to your credit. In a resume, you cannot lie, but you can omit anything which does not work in your favor.
Resumes commonly contain the following information. The categories marked with an asterisk are essential.
* Name, Address, and Phone Number
However, you have many options. You may choose other titles for these categories and add categories that are relevant for you qualification: Computer skills, Foreign Languages.
If you have more than seven items under a heading, consider using subheadings. For example, a student who had a great many activities might divide them into: Student Government, Other Campus Activities, and Community Service.
Resumes differ from letters of application in the following ways:
- A resume is adapted to a position. The letter is adapted to the needs of a particular organization.
- The resume summarizes all your qualifications. The letter shows how your qualifications can help the organization meet its needs, how you differ from other applicants, and that you have some knowledge of the organizations.
- The resume uses short, parallel phrases and sentence fragments. The letter uses complete sentences in well-written paragraphs.
You can usually expect the potential employer or recruitment consultant to peruse your application for about half a minute before they make a decision as to whether or not you are an interesting candidate for the position and should be invited for an interview. You do not really have much time in which to impress the reader that you are the right person for the job. Well thought-out and written application documents can seldom win you the job, but they can give you that important chance to be invited for an interview.
Application documents include: - Application letters - CVs and references - Degrees, Diplomas and other certification
A good starting point is to write a CV that is adapted to the position you are applying for, and then to write a letter of application that reinforces points you wish to emphasise (any other documents required for a particular application should be specified in the advertisement). A good rule is that a CV should contain everything that you have achieved, while the application letter should describe what you have learnt from everything that you have achieved.