- Dress conservatively and professionally (consider worksite environment and culture)
- Have a neat, clean, well-groomed appearance
- Arrive 10-15 minutes early
- Greet interviewer with a firm handshake
- Maintain eye contact
- Monitor voice volume (not too soft or loud)
- Be yourself
Enthusiasm is a Key Factor
Greet the interviewer: “Thank you for meeting with me. I’ve been looking forward to this discussion.” Although you have discussed the position in detail with your staffing consultant prior to the interview, you should ask further questions about the job during the interview. Prepare a 1-2 minute summary of your background. Practice it. After your summary say “________ at Express has told me about the position, but I would like to hear more.” This will defer the conversation to the interviewer.
Here are a few questions you might ask:
- “Could you summarize a day in this position?”
- “Who will I be working with on a daily basis?”
- “What traits do your successful employees have?”
- “What are your company’s short-term goals? Long-term goals?”
- “Why do people like working here?”
Never ask about salary, fringe benefits or time off. Let the interviewer lead into these area of discussion.
Be Ready for the Traditional Questions
- “What are your strengths?”
- “What are your weaknesses?”
- “Where do you see yourself in 3 to 5 years?”
- “What are your top two accomplishments?”
- “Why should we hire you?”
Prepare for Difficult Interview Questions
“What salary level are you looking for?”
Avoid giving a dollar amount, particularly on the first interview. Instead you might say, “__________ at Express has told me that I am within the salary guidelines. Money is important; however, the company and job are most important. Today, I am interested what kind of contribution I could make here.”
“Salary is important, along with opportunity for advancement, challenge, stability and the people I meet.”
“Why are you considering a change?”
Focus on how your career has led you to this point.
“Why is there a gap in your employment between Company ABC and Company XYZ?”
Always be honest, but do not over explain.
“What kept you from competing your degree at the University of X?”
Answer the question honestly, then relate your background and skill sets to the interviewer’s situation. Be prepared to discuss major projects and accomplishments in your past. Your representative at Express Employment will be happy to rehearse this with you prior to the interview.
End the Interview Positively
Don’t just fade away. Here are some key questions to ask your interviewer:
- “What in my background would you like to know more about?”
- “What is the next step?”
- “What, if anything, would prevent me from moving to the next step?”
Remember, you want the interviewer to know you are interested. If there are two equal candidates, the one who asks, gets.
Ask for the interviewer’s business card.
Call your Express representative to let them know how to interview went. This will prepare them to ask the appropriate questions when the interviewer calls.
Immediately send a thank you note or letter to the interviewer stressing your interest in the position and your appreciation for the opportunity to interview.