If it has been a while since you last applied for a job you may be wondering where to start?
Don’t worry, Jonathan Lee Recruitment has you covered. We have compiled our top job interview tips, job interview preparation ideas and career advice below.
Freshly updated, view our top job hunting tips of 2023 below:
Quick links –
How to apply for a job:
1. Out of work or open to work? Do this…
If you’re currently open to work and have a LinkedIn profile then there are two things you need to do –
1.If you are open to work and want everyone to know then you can add an ‘open to work’ frame to your profile picture. To so this simply click on your profile image – click ‘frames’, click the ‘#OpenToWork’ frame and click apply.
2. If you are casually browsing or open to work but only want recruiters to know rather than your whole network, do this:
Click ‘Me’, then click ‘View profile’ but this time click the ‘show recruiters you’re open to work’ box. You can then select what type of jobs you’re looking for and whether you are just casually browsing or immediately available.
We recommend doing both of these tasks if you’re open to work as this acts as a signal to recruiters that you are looking and would be open to contact about suitable opportunities.
2. Keep on learning
If you’ve been doing the same job for a while and suddenly find yourself on the job market, you could find that, externally, the skills you need to do a similar job somewhere else have changed.
Don’t be alarmed.
The digital age has made it easier than ever to learn new skills – why not brush up on YouTube, search for an online course or ask for advice on social media.
Always focus on what you can do instead of what you can’t, but, don’t be afraid to be honest in an interview or application and explain that although you might not have a certain skill that is needed you are already using your own initiative to research how to gain it.
A willingness to learn and examples of using your own initiative can be a winning combination when it comes to applying for a job.
3. Google yourself!
When was the last time you googled your name?
When applying for a job you can assume that employers will check out your digital footprint to build a picture of who you are.
We, therefore, recommend googling your name to see what the internet says about you,
If you see something you don’t think shows you in the best light delete it or ask for it to be removed.
If you can’t find much material about yourself then we recommend building up an online presence.
This could be setting up a LinkedIn account or setting up a blog with a company such as WordPress which showcases your skills.
Don’t forget to ‘google yourself’ at regular intervals and always make sure your online material is up-to-date.
4. Check your social media footprint
When was the last time you had an audit of your social media?
Some social media platforms have been with us for over 15 years now. The world has moved on in so many ways, so the picture you posted when partying at university or the post you innocently wrote many years ago may not be quite appropriate anymore.
It’s human nature for a potential employer to be curious and search for you on social media pre-hire so it’s a good idea to have an audit and think of your social media as your shop window, how would you like to be viewed by others?
Always ensure that your accounts are set to ‘private’ mode or that your social media portrays you as you wish it to.
5. Join LinkedIn groups
A LinkedIn group is a virtual forum on LinkedIn that enables professionals to connect with each other to share expertise, ask for advice, build relationships and network with like-minded people.
We recommend joining relevant LinkedIn groups whether you are looking for a new job or not.
Not only do they offer you a chance to see how others are doing things in your sector, but you will also usually find that recruitment professionals are in these groups too, using them to search for candidates when they have a job role to fill.
Just being a part of these groups is not quite good enough though – comment, like, and share relevant posts as well.
Being vocal (in the right way) within your LinkedIn group will help you connect with others, show your expertise and help you stand out from the crowd, putting you front of mind if any relevant opportunities were to appear.
6. Get your personality across in your CV
It’s easier said than done sometimes to get your energy and personality to shine in a written resume, but it can be the difference in getting to the next stage. Avoid clichés where possible and make sure your personal summary really reflects you, your interests and how these contribute to making you a rounded and employable individual.
There is a balance to be struck though, don’t be too wacky or off-the-wall, remember it is still a professional document.It is possible to be professional without being boring.
7. Presentation matters
If your CV is too busy or wordy, it can be hard for the recruiter to quickly pick out the skills and experience they are looking for. With increased applications, most recruiters are skim-reading CVs at the first stage of sifting.
Rather than writing long paragraphs about previous jobs, put key information in bullet points.
Leave some white space, even if this means your CV extends to an extra page.
Be concise, pick out key responsibilities and achievements for each role you’ve held.
List core skills that you bring and also key tools and knowledge that reflect the role requirement.
Spelling errors show a lack of care and attention to detail. It’s important to check and double-check before pressing send.
Don’t repeat yourself. Don’t repeat yourself 😉
8. CV spelling mistakes
Did you know that Adzuna recently carried out a study of 147,000 CVs and discovered that 62% of them contained a spelling mistake!
So if the majority of CVs in the marketplace have a mistake in them then why is it considered such a bad thing?
Unfortunately not only does a mistake leave a bad first impression on the reader but it also suggests that your attention to detail isn’t too great, and even one mistake can be devastating when it comes to trying to secure your next role – According to a survey conducted by CV Library, 71% of recruiters list CV errors as their biggest pet-peeve.
Of course, not every recruiter will be concerned if your spelling isn’t up to scratch, and likewise not every job will need your spelling to be tip-top.
But, we do recommend using a spellchecker, reading your CV out loud to yourself, and asking someone else to review it.
Consider passing your CV to a recruiter to critique too, they see hundreds of CVs every day so will be able to offer informed advice.
9. Don’t paper over CV cracks
Don’t gloss over any gaps in your CV. There can be many reasons for taking a break but if there is no explanation, potential employers may wonder why.
Highlight any study, training, or traveling done during these times; maybe event volunteer work or personal projects that demonstrate you’ve been productive.
A word of caution; don’t invent things. You may get caught out later in the process.
10. One size does not fit all
If you are applying for a specific role, your CV is your “representative” and unless it answers the requirements of the job advertised, you may not get the opportunity to interview.
Instead, use the advert to identify the key skills or requirements the recruiter is looking for and prioritise them in your CV, listing them close to the top or in your summary.
Don’t forget to update your LinkedIn profile too so that it reflects the skills you are listing on your application.
11. Use keywords in your CV
When constructing your CV it’s really important to include keywords that are relevant to the job roles you are trying to secure.
Many recruiters use software to find suitable candidates for their vacancies. This software automatically scans CVs to pick out relevant keywords that match what the client is looking for.
So for instance, if the job role is for a CAS Alias Modeller, the recruiter may scan CVs that include the words CAS Modeller, Digital modelling or Alias software.
But how do you know which keywords to include in your CV?
These will change based on the job role you are looking for so it’s best to tailor the ones you use in your CV every time you submit it for a new role.
We recommend looking at the job description, picking out keywords, and then including these in a skills section in your CV that you can easily change each time you apply for a new role.
12. How to write a cover letter
If you have the opportunity to write a cover letter for a job you are applying for we recommend taking it.
It gives you the chance to express why you would be perfect for the role you are applying for, in an easy-to-read personalised format.
The fact you have taken the time and applied effort to put a cover letter together also shows the recruiter how much you want the job.
Our tips for writing a good cover letter are as follows:
1. Put your contact details at the top of the letter.
2. Address the hiring manager by name if you know it or as the hiring manager if not e.g. Dear Mrs Franks/Dear Hiring Manager
3. Share the reasons why you would be perfect for the role and what you would bring to it.
4. Mention relevant current and past experience.
5. Mention relevant qualifications you have.
6. Finish by saying how you would love the opportunity to talk further and that you look forward to hearing from them.
7. Keep the length to one page.
13. Show flexibility
One of the most important attributes that has been brought to the fore recently is the ability to deal with rapid change. Whether this is managing change, innovating to overcome problems of remote working or just maintaining the right mindset in a changing work environment.
With smaller workforces, employers are looking for people who are adaptable, willing to get stuck in and work flexibly to meet the business needs and who bring a problem-solving, positive and proactive attitude and approach.
It is worth highlighting these soft skills, if you have them of course, and thinking of how they can be demonstrated on a CV; through a project at a previous employer or perhaps as new training or skills that have been acquired during lockdown.
14. Apply for jobs in your own time
When working from home and in the process of job hunting, it can be tempting to apply for jobs online during working hours.
You may even be tempted to use property belonging to your company such as a mobile phone or laptop to conduct your search.
Don’t do this.
In modern life it is extremely easy for a company to track what you are doing in company hours and on company devices.
This can raise serious issues with your current company including alerting them to the fact that you are looking to move on.
Instead, apply for jobs using your own personal property during your own time.
15. What have you applied for?
Social media and websites make it easier than ever to simply apply for a job at the press of one button.
This is great as it saves you time filling in the same old details again and again.
However, one thing we recommend is to make a note of everything you’ve applied for.
The reason for this is that if a recruiter or the recruiting company does call you back to arrange an interview, then it will be fairly obvious to them if you have just applied to jobs in bulk rather than applying to their job because you really want it.
If you can’t remember any details about the job but someone else they’ve called can then it could put you behind them in the race, straight away.
Try and memorise just one or two things about each job you apply for, especially what it was that attracted you to apply – your job interview starts as soon as you’re contacted to arrange it.
16. Set up job alerts
Let technology do the hard work for you!
Most job websites, job boards and social media channels like LinkedIn have a job alerts button.
Make sure you take advantage of these job alerts so that you are automatically notified when a new job becomes available that matches your criteria.
43% of jobs are filled in the first 30 days of being posted* (Indeed) so it really does pay to be alerted to a new job as soon as it’s posted, so that you are one of the first to apply, this is especially important for any roles that need to be filled urgently.
17. Working through an Agency can help to take risks out of contracting
Common concerns for those working as a contractor include sourcing contracts yourself and then failing to get paid by the client or going for a lengthy period without work. Using a recruitment consultancy reduces this risk and can make contract work more stable and secure.
A reputable recruitment consultancy will act as an interceder between contractor and client, from identifying work to making sure you are paid regularly and correctly – as would be the case if you were employed on a permanent basis.
There can be a lot to balance in contracting – using a good recruitment consultancy to cover these responsibilities for you is a great way to ease concern and focus on the task at hand.
Recent stats by RAE revealed that 57% of female engineers drop off the register of professional engineers by the age of 35, compared to just 17% of their male counterparts.
Businesses are realising this needs to change.
We hear a lot about the shortage of engineers in the UK so focusing on retaining and empowering women in these roles is extremely important to close this gap.
One way employers can attract female talent is to show that they are a career option – engage with their female talent to promote success stories and to encourage more female entrants into engineering.
If businesses are looking to readdress the gender imbalance and women feel empowered to apply, together we can #breakthebias.
19. Should you tell your employer that you’re looking for a new job?
When you’re looking for a new job it can often feel like you’re being unfaithful to a loved one! Lots of sneaking around, secret meetings, phone calls at stolen moments.
So, maybe it’s best to be open with your current employer, and tell them that you’re looking for a new job? No! Think carefully before informing your boss that you’re looking at moving on because:
1. Your boss may think that you won’t give your all whilst looking for a new job.
2.You may be overlooked for tasks in place of other employees that are remaining.
3.You may change your mind and decide that you want to stay with your existing employer, so you don’t want them to already be looking at potential replacements.
We recommend only letting your current employer know AFTER you’ve signed a contract with your new employer, at the time you hand in your notice.
20. Unsure whether to apply for a job? Contact the recruiter.
Are you ruling yourself out of applying for a job too quickly?
An often-quoted statistic is that men will apply for jobs where they meet around 60% of the required elements, whilst women apply only where they meet 100% of the requirements.
It is easy however to look at a job advert and rule yourself out too quickly.In the current marketplace, most employers are more concerned with recruiting the right talent for their business, not just in ticking boxes.
If the job appeals to you and you have some of the relevant experience, pick up the phone and speak to the recruiter or consultant to find out more about the role and requirements before ruling yourself out.
It’s the recruiter’s job to work in the interests of both the employer and the candidates and a conversation will soon let you know if you would be a fit for the role.They’re also likely to have other opportunities if the job is not for you!
21. Check out Glassdoor
Glassdoor is a website that allows people to rate and review their employers/ex-employers anonymously.
Therefore it is worth checking out Glassdoor when you are applying for a job at a company to see what people have said about working there.
A word of warning though, you tend to find that many people only review a company if they have had a particularly bad or good experience, therefore don’t solely judge whether to apply there based on the opinions of others.
If a company has had particularly bad reviews, and you are working with a recruiter then why not ask them if they have any more information on the reasons behind the bad reviews.
With everything in life its best to judge your own opinion on something based on a variety of different sources, don’t let one or two bad reviews of a company rule you out from finding out further information on an opening.
22. Follow companies
Have you got a dream company you’d like to work for?
Make sure you are as up-to-date with their news as possible.
Follow them on their social media channels, sign up to their RSS blog feeds and like and comment on their content.
Most companies share their vacancies on social media as it is a free way to advertise among an interested active audience, so you will therefore be the first to know of any new openings.
Can’t see any open vacancies? Why not reach out to their HR team and state what you can offer them, sometimes companies don’t know what they are missing out on until they hear it first.
Another advantage of staying up to date with their company news is that if you do get a job interview you’ll be one step ahead of the competition.
23. Check your online CVs
Do you know all of the job boards (CV Library, Reed, Indeed etc) that your CV is on?
And, when was the last time you checked these job boards to see which version of your CV is on there?
Many recruiters have access to the CVs contained on job boards. They use this information to see if they can find relevant candidates for their jobs, so if you have an out-of-date CV on there you could be missing out on being approached about vacancies that you are a match for.
Alternatively, if you keep being contacted about jobs that you have no interest in, it could be because an old CV is still visible on these job boards.
Next time you are approached ask the recruiter where they found your CV, then you can log on to the job board and edit or delete the CV as you see fit.
A fresh edit of your CV on a job board could be all you need to do to alert a recruiter and secure your dream job.
24. Have you considered a career in recruitment?
We spend an average of a third of our day at work so having the right job with a great company has a huge impact on our quality of life.
Could any job be better than knowing your day can not only influence and change people’s lives for the better but also contribute to the growth of companies in the UK and beyond?
Many of our existing recruitment consultants have come from a technical or commercial sector first before developing the professional recruitment approach.
Recruitment is all about relationships.
Understanding what a company needs and finding the right talent to fit the role and the culture both now and for the future is what a recruitment consultant thrives upon.
There is no single blueprint for success in recruitment.
If you bring a real focus on people, quality, service and professional engagement, enjoy relationship development and management and have experience in a relevant industry then recruitment might just be for you!
25. The power of networking
Have you ever heard the phrase ‘It’s not what you know but who you know’?
When it comes to recruitment we don’t wholeheartedly agree with this phrase, as there is no doubt that you need to have the right skills and expertise to be able to do a job, but, we do believe it’s important to network within your industry.
Whether it’s by attending events, being active on social media or being a member of a professional body. Networking enables you to meet like-minded people and gives you a platform to show and talk about your expertise in a certain area.
Networking could allow you to hear about job opportunities and will put you in the front of people’s minds when it comes to any job opportunities that they may have or know of in your field.
We recommend networking as much as possible.
26. Time your job search
We have been at the forefront of the recruitment industry for over four decades meaning we can keep a close eye on how things have changed over time.
Most years we have found that there is a significant increase in the number of people who begin their job search in either September or January; once they’ve returned to work after a holiday period and realised they are no longer fulfilled in their role.
However, in 2022, this spike has been less noticeable. Some people recommend timing your job search to the ‘off peak’ months as this might mean less competition and therefore more chance of landing your dream job but we advise caution.
Skills are in demand and so in order to get your timing right, you should sign up for job alerts from key recruitment companies, or job boards.
Be specific about what you are looking for and be ready to go when the right job comes along so that you are at the front of the queue.
27. Refer a friend
Not looking for a job but know someone who is?
Many companies and recruitment agencies have refer-a-friend schemes in place, whereby if you recommend someone for a role and they are successful with their job application, you will receive a reward when they begin their new job and they have been in the position for a certain period of time.
Here at Jonathan Lee Recruitment, we offer a payment of up to £300 for each successful recommendation we receive.
So, if you know of someone that would be an ideal candidate for one of our roles please visit:
Type in their details and if we subsequently place them in a permanent or contract role you will receive a payment of up to £300 – It really is as simple as that!
28. Reference your transferable and soft skills
We recommend including a skills section in your CV.
This should include specific industry or software-related skills you have but also make reference to transferable and soft skills you possess too.
Making reference to transferable and soft skills is particularly important if you are looking at changing the industry or role you work in. As the presence of these skills on your CV can help fill in any industry-related gaps you may have.
Examples of transferable and soft skills include problem-solving, leadership, adaptability, teamwork, time management and communication.
Of course, anything you say on paper should be backed up practically. So be ready to give examples of how you use these skills at the job interview stage.
29. Gaps in employment
Is there a gap in your employment history? It’s not the end of the world but you should expect to talk about it in a job interview.
If asked, be honest and open, explain why there is a gap and if possible turn it into a positive.
Concentrate on any experiences or qualifications you gained during your time off, talk about soft skills or life skills you developed and explain how they can help you with the role you are applying for.
Life is rarely simple, so a gap in your CV is nothing to be feared.
30. Be clear in what you want before applying for a job
Not happy in your current role and think it’s time to see what vacancies exist?
Take a moment to think about what you want from your next role.
What would be your ideal job?
What tasks do you enjoy doing and which ones not so much?
Ask yourself what sort of company would you like to work for and what culture would you like to step into?
Once you are clear in what you want from your next role, you will be able to assess job opportunities more easily.
It will also allow you to ask relevant questions of recruiters or at job interviews so that you ensure the job you are applying for is ideal for you.
31. Use downtime to your advantage
As the festive season draws nearer, a lot of us slowly begin to unwind and get ready for the big day… and so we should, we deserve it!
It can often feel like the first time, in a long time, we can sit back and enjoy some rest.
If you’re not happy in your current job though, this downtime is the perfect opportunity to update your CV, check what job opportunities are out there and approach recruiters.
Doing some extra work now can set you up perfectly for the New Year.
How to prepare for a job interview:
32. Interview prep
The phrase ‘How to prepare for an interview’ has over 5000 searches in the UK alone per month, so how can you
possibly do it?
The job spec is your friend. The job spec is usually divided into multiple bullet points detailing what you’ll need to do in your potential new job, and, the type of person they are after.
When preparing for an interview, one great piece of advice is to treat each of these bullet points as a question and draft out an answer. E.g. If it says you will have to use a certain tool, prepare an example of when you have used this tool with quantifiable results if possible.
Draft up a response to each bullet point ‘question’ and try and memorise where possible, this will allow their requirements and your responses to really seep in subconsciously, so you will be ready for the big day!
33. How to practice for a job interview
If it’s been a while since you’ve had a job interview, then we recommend practicing first.
But how can you practice effectively?
If you are applying for a job interview through a recruitment agency then why not ask them if they would be willing to set up some time to run through a mock interview.
The recruitment agency is working in the best interests of both you and your potential employer, so you should find that they will be willing to run through this with you.
Recruitment agencies are also best placed to know the type of question you are likely to be asked and how best to respond.
34. Plan your journey
We all get told first impressions count, when it comes to job interviews one of the first things that can act against you is being late.
Before attending your job interview we recommend a number of things to make sure you arrive in plenty of time:
1. Double-check your emails/ check with the recruiter that you have the correct address details
for the interview.
2. Check to see what the parking situation is like. Can you park onsite? Is there a car park nearby if not?
3. Check your maps app to see how long this journey usually takes – don’t forget to input the time that you need to arrive by (always try to arrive for your interview 15 minutes before you should).
4. If you really want to be as prepared as possible – Try to do a trial drive.
5. Check the weather – If it’s likely to be bad always give yourself extra journey time to allow for any hold-ups.
35. Remember – People hire people
When applying for a job it’s easy to get caught up in it sometimes appearing to be a tick boxing exercise – Do you have the relevant experience and how can you demonstrate this with examples? What can you bring to the role that others can’t?
All these things are important but it’s as important to remember that it’s people hiring – not robots.
People want to hire people they can see themselves enjoying working with. That’s why it is important to be yourself, be honest, and be human during a job interview.
36. What do you wear for a job interview?
Making a good first impression in a job interview is very important.
One of the ways we are instantly judged is by what we are wearing, but dressing for a job interview can be very tricky.
You don’t want to dress too casually if the company is quite traditional in what they wear, however at the same time you don’t want to appear to be a bad fit for the company culture if the company is quite casual, so what do you do?
1. Ask your recruiter or the company what most people wear there – this will give you a good idea on whether to dress up or down.
2. If you’re unsure always ‘dress up’
3. Always make sure you try your interview clothes on in advance to ensure they still fit, especially if you haven’t worn them in a while.
4.Iron/Prepare your clothes the night before – This will be one less thing to worry about in the morning.
37. How do you prepare for a video job interview?
One outcome of the pandemic which shows no sign of abating is the rise in video interviewing but how can you best prepare for a video interview?
Here are our 10 top tips:
1.Do your research
2.Don’t read from the screen
3.Location – Are you in a quiet space, is there anything distracting behind you?
4.Test out your webcam – Is the camera angle right? Are you a good distance from the screen?
5. Check the connection beforehand so you’re not in a panic trying to sort out any technical issues
6. Arrive 5 – 10 minutes early
7. Be professional in what you wear
8. Be engaging – Make eye contact, smile, and use your hands and body language to express yourself
9. Usual interview rules apply: Practise beforehand and use scenarios and examples
10. Ask questions – write them in a notepad and refer to them during the interview – this proves you’ve done your research
To read more on how to prepare for a video job interview click the link.
Job interview tips:
38. Everyone is interviewing you!
From the moment you leave your house on the morning of the job interview – treat everyone as if they know the job interviewer.
Not only will this set you in a positive mindset but they actually could.
That person that has just cut you up on the motorway could be heading to the same place as you and be best friends with the interviewer.
Stopped off at a shop to buy something? The person behind you may know your interviewer too!
You can guarantee that the first thing the interviewer will do once they’ve left you is ask the receptionist what they thought of you. So make sure you leave a positive impression on them too.
Be friendly, kind, and genuine throughout the day to everyone you meet.
39. An interview is a two-way process
A job interview can sometimes feel like an interrogation, you get asked question after question in order for the interviewer to work out whether you have the right answers.
It shouldn’t be like this. An interview is actually a chance for you to work out if you want to work for the company too.
With this in mind, it’s important to think of an interview as a two-way conversation, of course, you are there to answer the interviewer’s questions but mask your own questions too.
So for instance, if they ask you how you do a certain task, tell them but then ask how they do the same task currently.
Make sure you always have questions pre-prepared too and try to ask them naturally when a suitable moment arises in an interview. Not only does this show you have done your research but also indicates you have a genuine interest too.
Uncertainty can often leave us feeling anxious, so ensure you ask any questions on your mind, this in turn will enable you to be certain that the job is right for you.
40. Tell me about yourself
This is often the first question you will be asked at a job interview.
It is a question that anyone can answer and a great way to ease you into a job interview.
As it is the first question, you will, of course, want to ensure you give a positive first impression. Therefore we recommend using it as a first chance to pitch why you would be perfect for the job.
Use the present, past, future formula when answering this question.
Present: Say where you currently work and what your duties are.
Past: Mention what you did prior to your current role and any relevant qualifications you have gained along the way.
Future: Finally, finish by stating what attracted you to this role and why you would be a good fit.
41. Why are you looking to leave your job?
This is one of the most common interview questions but how honest should you be?
It’s important to put yourself in the interviewers’ shoes here to understand why they are asking this question.
They usually want to know if the reasons you state match what they are offering to ensure you are a good fit for each other.
So for instance, if you ran out of ways to progress in your old job but you know there are lots of opportunities to progress in your new job it could be worth stating this.
Always try and put a positive spin on why you are leaving too e.g. I have really enjoyed my time at my current company but I want to focus more on (a, b, and c), which I can see there is the opportunity to do so here.
42. What do you know about our company?
Many companies will often start a job interview with this question. This will enable the interviewer to judge the amount of research the candidate has done on the company, which in turn shows how much they want the job.
The assumption being that if they know very little about the company, they probably aren’t actually too bothered about working for them, they could be just one of many interviews that the candidate has lined up.
You should always be prepared for this answer, give 3 to 4 stats (not too many that you may forget) about the company that you’ve picked up from their ‘about us’ webpage: these could be things like when they were formed, what they sell, what their mission statement is and a recent bit of news about them that you picked up from their social media.
Failure to prepare for this question can leave a really bad first impression.
43. Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?
This is a really common interview question … but why do interviewers ask this and what is the ideal response?
Interviewers usually ask this question for one of three reasons.
1. They want to see if you will be happy in your position and how long for.
2. They want to see what your long-term goals are
3. They want to see if your goals align with the companies.
An ideal response could be to say that ‘you want to be the best at what you do, you want to keep on learning and progressing if the opportunity arises and if you read about the company looking to expand in a certain market, mention this and say this would be something you’d love to explore if the opportunity arises.
This question is all about showing that your goals align with those of the company.
44. What’s your biggest weakness?
A job interview offers you the chance to sell yourself and explain why you are the ideal candidate for that role.
Therefore, it can feel odd to have to explain what your weaknesses are.
Interviewers often ask this question as they want to assess how self-aware you are, how humble you are and if you’re willing to continuously improve.
No one is perfect, we all have our weaknesses, but it’s important to give a balanced answer in response to this question.
So definitely don’t say you are perfect but also don’t say you are hopeless at doing key parts of the job.
Instead, pick something which isn’t pivotal to the role as an example and (this is the key part) share what you have been doing to improve.
So for instance, if your presentation skills aren’t great, state this but then also state what you’re doing to improve them e.g. Attending online classes or short courses.
45. Why should we hire you?
To get asked this question in an interview can seem very direct as really the whole interview process is around you trying to showcase the very reasons why the recruiting company should hire you.
However, if you do get asked this question use it as your chance to shine!
Make sure you’re prepared by remembering what it is that the company is seeking in their job advert, succinctly state this back to them and tell them how you match this criterion
Have they talked about the culture of the company? If so explain why you think you’ll be a good fit for this too.
Don’t forget companies often want someone to help them improve not just do the job – So after doing your research if you think there is something you could do to make an instant impact, let them know.
Deliver your answer with passion – You may be just as suitable for the job as the candidate that your competing against but one thing that can help you stand out is passion – Being passionate and positive about the opportunity can leave a great impression on the interviewer.
46. Last impressions count
When interviewing for a post we hear a lot about how ‘first impressions count’ but have you thought about the last impression you leave before you leave the interview?
An interview will usually end with the chance to ask questions about the role and the company.
Always have 2-3 relevant questions to ask which prove that you’ve not only done your research on the company but also lead to a further chance to sell yourself.
For instance, if you think they aren’t doing an activity that you know how to do, confirm they aren’t, and if not, tell them about how you have done something similar and how you would implement it in their company.
After the job interview:
47. The power of a thank you
Following a job interview, a good tip is to send the interviewer a quick thank you email afterwards.
Thank them for taking the time to interview you, use it as a chance to (succinctly) elaborate on any responses you weren’t quite happy with or where you could have provided more detail.
Make it as natural as possible too, if you discovered a shared interest e.g. a love for a particular sport – why not wish their team look for the weekend.
If they are deciding between you and another candidate then the power of a thank you could be what swings the vote in your favour.
48. Always ask for feedback
It’s disappointing for anyone to be told that you didn’t get the job, especially after putting your time and effort into the application and interview preparation.
However disappointed you may be, it’s really important to treat it as an opportunity to learn and do better next time so make sure you contact the recruiter or your interviewer to ask for feedback.
Thank them for taking the time to interview you, explain that you were looking for feedback that you could use for your next interview, then ask them what you did well and what you could’ve improved on.
Whatever the response, make sure to say thanks and wish them well – You never know if your paths will cross again!
Of course, some interviewers forget the importance of feedback and this is really frustrating. So for all you interviewers out there, make sure you take the time to respond!
49. When should I hear back from a job interview?
You’ve just had your job interview, you’re pretty sure you’ve aced it, how long should you wait to hear back from the interviewer /recruiter before you chase them?
Ask at the end of the interview when you can expect to hear back regarding a decision (if you aren’t told automatically)
Send an email the day after your interview thanking the interviewer for their time and reiterating your enthusiasm for the job (if this is still the case!). Next, if you haven’t heard back from the recruiter by the date they say you should, wait another day or two and then chase.
Recruitment can be a very complicated process. Various parties are involved in making a decision, so giving a little bit of leeway before chasing is fair to all parties.
After a couple of extra days though, feel free to contact the recruiter/recruiting company to see when a decision will be made. This again shows your enthusiasm without being too pushy and chasing too early.
50. How to hand in your notice
Getting a new job is an exciting time!
You probably can’t wait to let all of your loved ones know the news but when should you hand in your notice with your current employer?
It can be tempting to hand this in as soon as you get the phone call from your recruiter to let you know of your success.
You should always wait until you have received a formal written offer from your new employer.
At this stage, confirm back to the recruiter that you have received it and that you will now hand in your notice.
Congratulations! Now it’s time to book a meeting with your line manager to let them know the news – This can be a scary time but remember that moving jobs is an every day part of business life.
51. Be wary of the counter offer
You’ve made the step of looking for a new role, you’ve handed in your notice and your employer is making you a counter offer. How do you decide what to do?
Here are some questions to stop and ask yourself:
I made the decision to leave because I felt a new position offered the environment to fulfill my career needs. If I stay, will the situation here really improve just because I said I was leaving?
If I stay, will my loyalty be suspect and affect my chance for advancement once the dust has settled?
The rise makes me very expensive for the job I am now in. How will that affect any future rises or prospects elsewhere?
I received this counteroffer because I resigned, will I have to do that the next time I think I am ready for a rise or promotion?
Two things to keep in mind:
1. The salary increase you receive as a counteroffer is likely to be less than the amount the company would have otherwise spent on recruiting your replacement – Does your employer really have your best interests at heart?
2. 80% of people who accept a counteroffer still go on to leave the business within 12 months of their initial resignation.
52. Don’t wait until you need a new job to update your CV
Updating your CV is something the majority of us only think about doing when we’re looking for a new job, however, we recommend setting some time aside every so often to update your CV / LinkedIn profile to ensure they’re always up to date.
Ensure you update them with details of any new projects you’ve been working on, skills you’ve developed, and any change in job title, memberships held or contact details.
There are a number of reasons we recommend taking these steps whilst still in position at your current job:
1. You may forget about all of the great things you’ve done when the time comes to look for a new job
2. Looking for a new job appears less daunting if you know that your CV /LinkedIn is already up to date
3. Recruiters may proactively reach out to you as a result of changes you make – This could lead to you securing a dream job you didn’t even know was out there
It will take time and effort to continually update your CV/LinkedIn but doing so ensures you will be in the best position when the time comes to think about your future.
Looking for a new job? Check out our latest vacancies below