How do you prove you’re the best person for a job if you’re up against candidates with similar skills and experience to you?
The answer is that the 30 or so minutes you have during your interview are more crucial than ever.
You might have an amazing skill set, but your interviewer also needs to see you have that little bit extra to offer, too.
Our advice? Get to know the most sought-after traits companies look for when they’re hiring - then make it your mission to show you have them in spades.
As we know at HR GO, the world of work is evolving so fast - particularly in our digital era - that companies prize staff who can quickly adapt to new circumstances and environments.
Have you had to tackle any changes while in a previous role? Perhaps you’ve needed to get up to speed swiftly on new tools or technology, or faced new working styles or team restructure.
However personally challenging these situations were at the time, focus on how you confronted them head on and gained positives. Interviewers value resourcefulness and flexibility in the face of change.
Being a reliable employee doesn’t just mean that you’ll show up on time every day, although naturally that’s crucial if you want to last beyond your probation period.
In a wider context, reliability points to your work ethic and whether you deliver what you say you’re going to - or try your very hardest to.
Showing you take personal pride in putting in your best effort can impress bosses looking for responsible and dependable staff. So in an interview, take any chance to highlight your work ethic, and how you’re committed to getting the job done. Have there been times when you went above and beyond the call of duty to reach a deadline or solve a difficult problem for example?
Experience and skills used to be top priorities when it came to hiring, but now culture fit features just as heavily on a recruiter’s list of must-haves - particularly faced with two candidates with little to tell them apart on paper.
A great cultural fit is someone who’s a good match with the company in terms of work style, values and goals, and who’s judged to potentially get on best with the existing team.
So during your pre-interview research, read the company’s mission statement, its ‘about us’ page and most of all immerse yourself in its social media channels. What does the company value, and can you see any overlaps with things you’ve achieved in your previous roles, or examples of how your own values and passions will equip you to work well in the company’s environment?
While company culture is important, bear in mind that sometimes you can’t do anything about whether or not you’re the ‘right fit’. It might just come down to the question of whether your interviewer likes you and feels you’d work well with the team.
If this the case, it’s likely that you probably wouldn’t have been 100% happy working at that company anyway. Treat the interview as a learning experience and take heart that your ideal cultural fit may be just around the corner.