The key to acing interviews is a blend of the right skills, confidence, and most importantly: Preparation. By preparing for an interview, not only will a candidate feel more equipped to answer any and all questions, but the overall anxiety around the interview will be significantly diminished. When preparing for an interview, candidates should certainly ensure their resume is in tip-top shape, but they should also spend some time researching their prospective employer.
Researching a prospective employer allows a candidate to get a feel for whether or not the employer would be a good fit for them. This research, when used by a candidate during an interview, will also show an employer the candidate took the interview seriously. For recruiters and hiring managers, a candidate who truly knows a company will stand apart and be remembered.
So, what things should a candidate research about a company before they sit down for an interview?
The 5 Things You Need to Know Before Your Interview
1. Clients, Products, and Services
At the very least, candidates should be familiar with the company’s products, services, and clients. Candidates should use this information to frame their background and experience in a way that shows the value-add for their prospective hiring.
2. Corporate Officers and Management
A candidate should certainly know who their future boss is, but they should also know who leads the organization overall. Knowing who the CEO, CFO, directors, and managers are and a little about their backgrounds can provide a wealth of knowledge to prospective candidates. Additionally, an understanding of organizational structure is also beneficial, as it can signal what is essential to the organization. For example, if an organization has a “Chief Diversity Officer,” it is reasonable to assume diversity is a high priority for the company. This information is easily found on most corporate websites.
3. Recent News and Events Regarding the Employer
When performing company research, candidates should ensure they move past the corporate website for information. Conducting an internet search of the company can highlight the latest trending stories regarding the organization. Has the company been in the news recently, and for what? Have they launched new products or initiatives? Are there any recent interviews with their corporate management team that can be read or viewed? It is highly likely any interviewer would be aware of these corporate announcements and news, and would be impressed by a candidate being able to speak about them in an interview.
4. Corporate Culture, Mission, and Values
When a candidate is brought in to interview, the company will often send an informational packet with material on corporate culture, mission, and values. If a candidate doesn’t receive such information, they should head to the corporate website or YouTube for company videos. Many organizations post such videos online, and this can be an excellent resource for this specific corporate information.
A candidate armed with this information can inject their knowledge of the corporate culture, mission, and values into their interview responses, demonstrating how they are an exact fit for the organization.
5. Lastly, but Most Important, Research Your Interviewer
In the day and age of LinkedIn, there is no reason a candidate should go into an interview ignorant of the background of their interviewer (unless, of course, they weren’t provided the names of the planned interviewers beforehand). With a quick LinkedIn and social media search, candidates will be able to see what the interviewer’s exact position is, and also find out if there are any commonalities (same college or previous employers) present before the big day. This information can create a more relaxed interview environment, ensuring a positive experience.
Interviews are and always will be stressful situations. However, with a little research, a candidate will not only be prepared, but their corporate knowledge will make them stand apart from the crowd.
Are you a job seeker who feels unprepared to face interviews? Do you need an ally in your corner? If so, it is time to contact the recruiting experts at New Era HR Solutions. At New Era HR Solutions, we prepare our candidates for everything from interviews to their first day of work.