How to have a successful job interview


You have applied for a job and made it to interview stage – congratulations! Now is the time to demonstrate to your interviewers how brilliant you are.

How do you do this?

You spend time preparing for your interview to ensure you make the most of this opportunity.

Here are some useful topics for you to think about whilst making your preparations:

  1. Practical steps
  • Know the time and place of the interview.
  • Do you need to confirm your attendance?
  • Find out who is interviewing you and the type of interview (e.g. will it be competency based?).
  • Ensure you have all the paperwork requested and take a copy of your CV/application.
  • Have you got an appropriate outfit to wear?
  • Take with you a contact telephone number, map and the interview confirmation letter.


  1. Research the company

Use the internet and your contacts to find out about the company. How is it developing? Why do you want to work there? What are the major challenges facing the company?

  1. Key points

Outline the key points you would like to get across during the interview in line with the job description, highlighting key aspects of your experience, qualifications and skills.

  1. Typical questions

Prepare answers to typical interview questions. For example, define your key attributes and provide examples of when you have demonstrated these.  In response to competency questions, consider examples that relate to the job you are applying for. For example, if you need to influence people think of an example when you have won someone over in a way relevant to the role.

  1. Difficult questions

Prepare persuasive answers to difficult questions. These could be relating to weaknesses or gaps in employment.

  1. Questions for the interviewer

Prepare a couple of constructive questions to ask the interviewer.

  1. Rehearse

Find a trusted friend or relative to practise your answers with.

Imagine how great you will be in the interview having spent time preparing answers in line with the above points compared to a candidate who has quickly read through the job specification the night before. Preparation is definitely the key to success

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