3 things to do to prepare for your job interview

Published on: 6 Jan 2015

Job interview on calendar

Image ©iStock.com/nigelcarse

You're not the only one applying for the job that you've just been offered an interview for. You might have made it to a shortlist after hundreds of other CVs were cast aside, but you've still got some stiff competition.

The interview is a chance for your potential employer to learn more, to get an impression of you as a person and to let you ask any questions of your own.

Thinking ahead might cause some stress, but it's vital to prepare. Don't go in hoping for the best – do everything you can to make "the best" happen.

Check the location

As soon as possible, find out where your interview is taking place. Plan routes, consider your travel options, and try to come up with a "Plan B" in case things don't quite go as expected. You're not just preparing for the interview itself, but for the time you'll spend getting there.

Some particularly well-prepared interviewees will make the journey in advance a few days before their interview, to check that it all works out. There are few things worse than getting lost, getting on the wrong train or taking a wrong turn in your car and being late to an interview, or at least turning up flustered because of a last-minute panic.

Prepare some questions

You're not the only one being interviewed. An interview is also your chance to ask questions and find out whether the role is right for you. Prepare some questions of your own and use your interview wisely. You might be asked if you have any questions, and it'll look great if you're prepared – but don't be afraid to offer them up if you're not being given the chance.

Prepare constructive criticism

You might not want to criticise a potential employer when you're trying to impress, but some interviewers will ask if you can suggest a way to make improvements. Look on the company's website or visit their business premises to subtly discover if there's something they can do better.

Don't offer this information up unless you're asked, and always word it carefully, but expect your interviewer to be very impressed if you can offer a way of improving things before you've even been employed.