recruitment whiteboard



by Morelle Pierson

interview, candidate

The 4 most vital interview tips.

Interviews are a vital part of the recruitment and decision-making process. Therefore, ensuring they run smoothly and are beneficial for both parties is really important.

You only ever get one chance to make a first impression and it’s crucial that you do this well.

To simplify this, we have narrowed it down to 4 key areas of consideration when it comes to getting ready for an interview.

1. Prepare 


  • Ensure you do your research.
  • Refresh yourself on your CV, the job specification and company you are going to visit – visit their website, check out their recent news / current goals and be familiar with the person that will be interviewing you. Social media are a great tool for this!
  • You can never be 100% sure what will be asked of your during your interview, but have a think about what they might ask - answers will need to be tailored to the role you are apply for. You should also think about your strengths and weaknesses in advance too.
  • Also, ensure that you have planned your journey and left yourself plenty of time in order to arrive at your interview location. We all know how temperamental trainlines can be!


  • Make sure you have familiarised yourself with the candidate’s skills set, experience and current situation. Have an idea of what you are looking for and what you are hoping to get out of the interview.
  • How are their skills relevant? Can they provide you with examples? Will they suit your team? What are their salary expectations / availability?
  • This is your chance to delve into their potential, so use the time wisely.  

2. Presentation 


  • In this competitive market, first impressions do really count.
  • Sometimes the key to success is being in the right frame of mind so dressing the part can really help unleash your potential! Dressing smartly will give an indication to your professionalism and shows you have made the effort to go that extra mile to impress.
  • Anyone you meet with once you step into your interview may influence the final decision maker  
  • A strong hand shake, smile - it will brighten your tone, keep eye contact and have a level of animation about you – these things will all help with engagement.
  • Presenting yourself well will only help you increase your chances!


  • You are representing your company during this meeting and it’s vital that you do this well.
  • It is just as important to sell an opportunity as it is for a suitable candidate to be interested in joining you. 
  • Dress smartly, strong hand shake and remember, eye contact!

3. Listen

  • The key to any successful exchange is both parties coming away with questions answered and a mutual understanding of each other.
  • Be sure to listen - wait and let the other finish to avoid talking over each other - then take your time to respond referring to any previous points and tailor your response to their specific needs.
  • Make sure you are clear and answer the questions specifically, with examples where required.
  • Sometimes, especially when nervous, people forget to listen to the questions. Don’t be afraid to ask for something to be repeated if you don’t understand or need clarification.

4. “Close”

  • Don’t forget this important step. You must “close” the meeting properly. This will provide a nice natural end to the conversation and allow both parties to walk away happy that the meeting was as fulfilling as it could be.
  • Let them know if you are interested in the job and ask when you will hear from them.
  • Ask relevant closing questions – “what are the next steps?” “do you have any concerns currently?”.
  • This will show interest and gives you an insight into what to expect moving forward.
  • At the end of the interview, make sure you finish with a thank you - “thank you for your time today”.

If a recruitment agency is supporting you in this process, remember to update them following the interview too – your feedback is important, and you should express your honest interest.

Either side may be left disappointed if your recruiter has not received feedback and could take it as a warning sign!

There will likely be questions resulting from the interview, so your recruiter should be able to help sort out the finer details and ensure that both parties are happy, hopefully contributing to a successful outcome!