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How to interview like a pro


Student holding folder
ECU’s Careers and Leadership Service can help with your job hunt.

Get the job you want with these six essential tips from ECU’s careers advice expert.

1. Be prepared

Preparation is the key to an impressive interview so do you research, investigate the company and know what the role involves.

ECU’s Senior Careers Advisor Gina Susca says it’s important to stand out from the other candidates.

“Use the internet to find out about the company, their latest news and look at their LinkedIn profile,” she advises.

“Re-read your job application to understand what areas may have impressed them. It’s also important to work out how you’ll get to the job interview and whether you can easily park.”

2. Dress to impress

The company will be looking to hire you and to represent them in the future so dress to impress by wearing something which looks smart and tidy.

“You need to feel comfortable and also professional. Look at what you’ll be wearing the night before and make sure your outfit isn’t marked and has been ironed,” explains Ms Susca.

Students in physiology lab
Showing enthusiasm is look at favourably by employers.

3. Enthusiasm counts

It will come as no surprise to learn that the best thing you can bring to an interview is a smile. It can make you seem more likeable and personable. A smile can calm a tense room.

Remember to show your excitement and enthusiasm about being part of the organisation. Recent research has shown that 75 per cent of employers undertaking job interviews look for a positive attitude towards the company at interview.

4. Ditch any nerves

It’s only natural that you will be nervous, but try to keep a check on this. Consider how you can best respond to answers on the spot.

“Try to work on reducing your nerves long before the day. Work on breathing techniques and consider affirmations so that you have the confidence to pull any interview off,” adds Ms Susca.

5. Think short, succinct answers

Keep your answers short and speak with clarity. If you’re unsure what they’re asking, then get them to repeat the question.

In most job interviews, employers will ask a variety of questions around situations which you’ve experienced.

The best way to approach these questions is with the Situation, Action and Outcome response (SAO). This involves giving a brief summary of the problem or situation, how you tackled it, and how you reached a solution.

“They want to hear about good outcomes. Don’t waffle. If you can see yourself getting tongue tied, apologise and start again. Interviewers love people who can see an error and are happy to correct it,” Ms Susca says.

6. Look to the future

If you haven’t been successful at the interview then learn from your mistakes by asking for feedback.

Once students have graduated at ECU, they become alumni and have ongoing access to ECU’s Careers and Leadership Services.

Career advisors are available to offer interview techniques and advice. Students can come in for one-on-one appointments face to face, or over the phone.

The team at ECU can also help you to build your LinkedIn profile and advise on networking.

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