Before any interview one of the most important things to do is to research the company you are interviewing with. Even in a climate where candidates are in demand and companies are crying out for great talent to join their business, being prepared is still hugely important.
Being prepared for an interview will not only help you to feel more relaxed, it will also demonstrate your desire to secure the role and join the business. You’ll be surprised how obvious it is when a candidate isn’t prepared and doesn’t know a lot about the business. This can have a huge impact on if you secure the role, as the interviewer wants to see someone who is enthusiastic about the role and business.
Given our experience of working closely with both candidates and managers, we have offered tips on researching the business and getting the right information before your interview…
The first place you should head is the company website. Here you will find information on the company’s mission statement, values, culture, projects and sectors they work in. It will also allow you to see where they have offices and the presence they have as a business, be it regional, national or on a global scale.
Remember, the research you are doing isn’t just to ensure you know about the business so you can answer any questions the interview may ask you, it is also to ensure that the company looks like the right fit for you. Do their values align with your values, does their company culture look like a good fit for you?
The next place to look is the company blog, if they have one. Most businesses should have a blog, or a news section on their website and here you will be able to see what they have announced, be it project news, company news or even articles about their people and culture.
Here you will be able to get a good feel for what matters to them as a business and what they believe is important to discuss and share. Not only will you get a better feel for the business, you may even get some good topics to discuss during the interview and also help with shaping questions you want to ask.
Once you have gone through the company’s website, another good area is the media and what is being discussed about this business. You could simply search for the company in Google and look at the latest articles that have been written about them, or you could go to a trusted source to see if there have been any write-ups. You don’t need to spend a long time doing this but again, this could give you some good ideas for questions for the interviewer and some areas to discuss.
This platform is becoming more and more important and is a great place to go to see what current and ex-employees say about working for the business. If you don’t want to spend a long time on Glassdoor then you can just look at the top level statistics that shows the overall experience. However, if you have time it would be a good idea to read some of the feedback, both negative and positive, to give you a more rounded overview of the business.
We also suggest you take a look at the company LinkedIn page. It won’t tell you anything you don’t already know about the business, but it will give you a good opportunity see some of their employees and if you know the interviewer, you could even take a look at their profile to get a better understanding of their role, experience and background. It’s always good to know who you are meeting.
If you have worked with a recruitment agency for your job search, you should speak with the Recruitment Consultant who got the interview for you. They will know a lot more than just what the company’s website can offer. They will know the person you are interviewing with and they will be able to give you some good advice on how to interact with them and get the best out of the interview. So make sure you pick their brains!
As part of our recruitment process we always make sure our Recruitment Consultants have a call with the candidate prior to the interview and they also make themselves available at anytime just in case the candidate has any further questions before the interview. We want to make sure our candidates go into the interview a prepared as possible to ensure they give themselves the best chance to showcase their talent.
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