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5 things you’ll wish you had researched before the interview

Allen Associates, News & Blog

Understanding what an Employer is looking for will undoubtedly strengthen your success rate during interview. It’s the one thing we say again and again, don’t underestimate the importance of doing your research. Without this, you could set yourself up for failure. Having a thorough knowledge of the company you’ve applied to will demonstrate your enthusiasm for the position and enable you to engage better in conversation. These are just a few areas you’ll need to prepare for before that all-important day.

Values and visions

Having the right skills and experience isn’t enough to land you a job offer. You also need to prove that you’ll be a good cultural fit – 84 per cent of recruiters believe this is one of the most important hiring factors. In fact, nine out of 10 will decide against Candidates who aren’t aligned with this. Hiring managers are looking for people who understand their company (and the way it works) which is essential to a successful onboarding process. As an applicant, it’s vital to be aware of this. Think about the things that motivate and inspire you and use these to explain why you want to work somewhere.

The management team

Find out about the key players within a company to get an insight into company culture. Look at what they contribute, how this is valued, and consider whether you can emulate this. Always try to research the people who will be interviewing you. Look at their areas of expertise, as well as their path to the top. If they started out in the same position as you, they’ll have a good understanding of the career trajectory you’re following. This could be a real benefit if you’re looking for mentor who can offer encouragement. It’s a fact that 75 per cent of workers leave their jobs because of their bosses. To be confident about the place you’re joining, you should aim to gain an insight into team leadership.

Recent news

To impress the hiring panel, be ready to demonstrate your knowledge of the business. Researching recent news is a simple way to do this. Look for company highlights, such as the company winning an award for completing a large project and introduce these into conversation. Of course, it’s best to highlight positive stories. If you’ve read something in the news that concerns you, you’ll need to be tactful about this. If a company has received some bad press, it’s likely that your interviewer will address this at some point without you needing to mention it.

Clients, products and services

It’s thought that 47 per cent of interviewers wouldn’t offer the job to a Candidate with little knowledge of the company. At some point during conversation, you’ll be asked ‘what do you know about us as a business?’ Failing to come up with a comprehensive answer is a recipe for disaster. Make sure you understand what the organisation does, including how your role fits into this. Start by looking at the clients they have on their books, their products and the service they provide. Be aware of a company’s selling points. Is there anything that makes them stand out in the market? Examine their competitors and how they position themselves differently. Impress the hiring panel by understanding this and bringing new ideas to the table in a constructive, positive way.

Feedback from past and current Employees

This is often the hardest thing to research. It can be difficult to find an opportunity to speak to people if you don’t have a direct contact. However, if you can do this, you’re bound to gain valuable information. Ask Employees for details on what it’s like to work there and why the role has been created. These details can then inform your interview preparation. Team profiles on social media or Glassdoor reviews can also be a helpful way to gain an insight into a particular workplace. While you should always take comments on review sites with a pinch of salt, watch out for common concerns repeated by more than one person.

Over the last 20 years, we have grown as a business to become one of the leading independent Recruitment agencies in Oxfordshire, and in 2018 we opened our first London office, to service Clients and Candidates in the capital.

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