Cracking a job interview has always been daunting and makes it stressful for candidates. With the COVID-19 pandemic, it has become even more challenging as organizations have adjusted to the new normal and the candidates also have to deal with the changes happening in the work culture. Since the majority of organizations have moved to adopt digital infrastructure, it is quite common that the initial rounds or the entire interview process will likely take place online.
Whether it is a virtual or face-to-face interview, preparing for it beforehand is imperative. To get through the interview successfully, there are a few key things that need to be considered:
Research about the employer
While having an impressive resume and experience are helpful, a decent understanding of the employer also makes you stand out at the interview. Research is a key factor in cracking an interview successfully. Knowing the company and whether you could be the right fit for it or not, makes the candidate more relevant for the company.
On the other hand, not knowing about the company can make the interviewer frustrated. Moreover, it shows a lack of initiative on your part. Having some knowledge about the company is so essential that many interviewers even ask their candidates what they know about the company. Those who have negligible to say about the company are immediately eliminated from the next round considering unprepared/ disinterested .Thus, in the present scenario , performing basic research can give you an edge over the other applicants
Show your interest in the company
There are many ways to showcase that a candidate is interested in working with the company. One effective way is to ask relevant questions about the company’s work culture at the end of the interview. It helps in gaining more insights about the company and how it feels to be working with them.
Begin with by going through its website, where you can find the maximum relevant information about the organization . Once you know the information that has been mentioned publicly, start making a list of questions that you would want to ask the interviewer. Be specific about each question and try including the things that can bring more clarification to you. For instance, if you saw that the company invests heavily in learning and development of its people, you can ask more about the programs that they offer.
Set your first impression
Whether you’re having a face-to-face or a virtual interview, a first impression is always useful in making the mark. It begins the moment you enter the room or turn on the video for an online interview. For virtual interviews, make sure that you sit in a noise-free area, away from the household and other distractions. Additionally, having a clean and clutter-free background also holds prime importance in showing the level of professionalism of the candidate. Also, be sure to look directly into the camera and keep yourself focused. While appearing for a face-to-face interview, make sure you put on the right attire and dress-up well. Apart from a decent formal attire, wear confidence in your body language, and go for it.
Share more about your experience
One of the most common questions that interviewers ask these days is “tell me something that’s not there on your resume”. This helps in determining whether the candidate is a good fit as per the company’s work culture or not. Apart from making the interviewer know about competence, do not forget to tell them that you’ll be the right fit for the team. As a candidate, consider this question as an opportunity to share about your attributes, strengths, and qualities. When the interviewer knows about your intangible strengths, it becomes easy to succeed in the interview.
Avoid – yes or no answers
Answering the questions with just yes or no strictly needs to be avoided as they are the clear signs of lack of confidence and nervousness in the candidate. Always elaborate on the answers and try to take up the Q&A round into a conversational tone. One of the biggest reasons for avoiding yes or no is that it doesn’t tell the employer much about your experience. Consider the interview round as an opportunity to sell your skills in an elaborative manner. For instance, if an interviewer asks you about a specific professional course that you have taken up and mentioned in the resume, try to explain how you used it and its relevance in your current role .
No matter how difficult your interview could be, make sure you thoroughly prepare for it. Furthermore, once the interview is done, try to be in touch with the interviewer or hiring manager. For instance, you could make a quick text or an email for thanking them and sharing how valuable the interview round was. Additionally, stay proactive when you know that you are likely to get shortlisted for the next round. If you haven’t received any update, you can always write a short email to follow up. Keep the sentences short and formal.