You are looking for a job or possibly landed an interview, great bravo! Heading into battle and not knowing key essentials to look out for can be suicidal. In the same wise heading into an job search and interviewing without knowing the key criteria and elements of selecting a successful candidate can cause you a lot of frustration. You will no longer be without guidance on key things to prepare on before you head for an interview. I explore eleven key things employers consider to hire you.
1. Quality of resumes/cover letters
The first document that comes to an employer is your resume or CV and it will determine whether you will proceed to the next stage or not. There are the basic things with a resume that you must get right such as style, writing, grammar and spelling. It is important to organize your CV/Resume into a great style and proofread it well as well as writing preferably in the first person.
Beyond writing there are four key metrics employers look out for in a CV/Resume and they are:
1) Your contributions.
2) Your savings
3) Your impact
4) Your completion of task
Important variables in your CV/Resume
The employer is looking our for contributions you made to the growth and development of your previous organization. Face it everyone wants someone who can make a difference and contribute to corporate development. Your CV cannot have a deficit on your contributions to your past organizations. In your CV/Resume be sure to demonstrate contributions you made. So refer to how you affected revenue, deals closed or partnerships you reached
Next what did you save you organization by your innovation and ingenuity. Here you can write about cost savings or process re-engineering that brought positive benefits to your organization. For example a statement like this: Conducted internal budget audit and discovered five key areas of redundant spending, saving GHs 23,000 per year. Who wouldn’t like this therefore show that you can be valuable.
Also state the impact that you had in your past working experience. State clearly the impact that you had helping clients, teams or collaborations you achieved. For instance, led a team of colleagues in my organization to identify customer needs and developed a product that resulted in increased sales and award in our industry.
Every employer wants a doer and will be interested in seeing the tasks that you completed over your career. State some key tasks that you have completed over the years that were of high impact. For instance you can make a statement like: I worked with facilities, IT and communications teams to set up and flawlessly execute company all-hands meetings every 2 weeks.
The first things employers consider to hire you is your appearance and therefore when appearing for an interview be sure to dress formally and attractively. Your appearance can either endear you to your hiring manager or put you off. It is particularly important in job openings that have a high degree service and contact with the public. Your dress code for interviews should be formal and it goes beyond dressing to neatness, hair grooming and appropriateness of colours. There are thirteen don’ts in a job interview you should avoid to ace your next interview.
3. Poise and interview etiquette
Your posture and etiquette is one of the things employers consider to hire you. Your composure can either be an aid or a destroyer. A calm relaxed and centered posture depicts competence, expertise and depth of knowledge. When in an interview don’t be jittery and speaking all over the place. Rather be calm, thoughtful and composed. Speak with deliberation and clarity preferably with some pauses in your speech.
Part of the etiquette is coming into the interview smiling, composed and polite. As an interviewee you should be very polite and respectful of your hiring managers. Your skills alone will not get you the job if you come across as shabby, snobbish and unagreeable.
Another key things employers consider to hire you is your self introduction or pitch. Never go into an interview without preparing and rehearsing your elevator pitch. Perfect it until inwardly you’re satisfied with your pitch. The pitch should capture who you are, your contributions, skills, uniqueness and how and where you can make a difference in your organization. Your hiring manager is looking at how you can benefit his organizations and therefore go all out to tell how you can contribute. A pitch is relatively easy thing to develop, master and help your career course.
5. Interest and enthusiasm in position and relevance to career goals
Your potential employer will be evaluating you on your motivation and career goals. The question on motivation will always pop up in an interview. If you are excited about the opening it will show in your demeanor and answer to questions. Let your enthusiasm for the position shine even if you must fake it. I don’t advice faking it, but make sure you clarify with your goals and make sure it’s the proper fit.
6. Knowledge of organization
another things employers consider to hire you is your knowledge of the organization. How much knowledge you display about your potential employers’ business, values, processes and approach is a factor employers consider. You should thoroughly research your employer’s organization to understand it well before going into an interview. Refer to their core values and tell how it aligns with you and tangible steps you have taken to do so.
7. Knowledge of the field and related info/practices
other things employers consider to hire you include your knowledge of the field. A key factor of consideration by employers is the amount of knowledge displayed about the role you will be filling. A key consideration is your understanding of the industry, tools, concepts, theories, best practices and key lessons. Be sure to research the role you will be applying and make sure you have a grasp of the job requirements and that you are able to articulate them well.
8. Ability to connect prior experience to the position
Your potential employer will be looking out for how well you can bring your past experiences to bear in the current role. If you can link your past experiences or things you did in the past that can better your current organization you will be inching towards convincing your potential employer. When answering questions refer to past experiences and how you navigated circumstances to achieve results for your organization.
9. Responses to behavioral questions
Employers will always ask behavioral questions to understand your aptitude in decision making, conflict resolution, technical skills, Problem solving, leadership and flexibility. Be prepared to answer behvioural questions with real life examples from the past. Think through all the possible behavior questions that can be asked and prepare answers for them in advance. In this way when question is asked you will not fumbling but you will have a head start.
The STAR approach can be used in answering behavioral interview questions in a structured manner by describing a specific situation, task, action, and result after your action. When asked a question, describe the situation, what was the task to be accomplished, the actions you took and last the results that ensued.
10. Performance in problem-solving questions/exercises
Also look out for problem solving questions or exercises that may given as part of an interview. You can’t fail a example and expect to be selected, you must pass all the tests that are given you. A good way to prepare is to look at what kinds of possible test questions may arise.
Most interviews will already tell you what to expect including a test or it may be at one of the stages of the selection process. Prepare for any test a make sure you score very high.
11. The quality of questions you ask
There is always an opportunity at the end of each interview to ask a question granted by interviewers. It is a further opportunity for you and your interviewers to evaluate your suitability. Don’t misuse the opportunity by asking unintelligent questions. And worse still do not say I have no questions to ask. Read my post on interviews and how to ask or answer questions.
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