Five steps to interviewing well for students

The interview is one of the most stressful aspects of the job application process.

While getting an interview can be exciting, it is also the most crucial part in getting the job since most of the pressure rides on the interview portion of the application process.

The interview is often the employer’s first impression of the job candidate, so it is important to put your best foot forward.

Below are five simple tips from Julie Turner, communication arts adjunct professor,  that will help students ace the job interview portion of the application process:

“Show up on time, dress professionally, do as much research about the company as you can, come up with a few thoughtful questions to ask the interviewer and end strongly,” said Turner.

1. Be on time:
Plan to arrive a few minutes before the interview is scheduled. If you are not familiar with the location, consider looking it up and driving by before the interview. Keep traffic in mind when en route, especially if the interview is in a large city. When you arrive, politely introduce yourself to the receptionist and wait patiently, with your phone out of sight, for the hiring manager to call you back for the interview.

2. Dress to impress:
The interview is an opportunity to personify the qualities listed in your cover letter, and to attest to the knowledge and experience you’ve had pertaining to the job for which you have applied. It is critical to dress professionally. Even if the at which you are interviewing has a laid- back dress code, dressing business casual or business professional demonstrates to the hiring manager that you will take the job seriously.

3. Research the company:
Employers want to make sure you are a good fit for their company. Part of that is making sure you care enough about the job to research information about the company and job itself before the interview. If you know more about the organization and job requirements, you will be better equipped to answer questions. In addition, you will be more confident throughout the entire interview process.

4. Ask questions:
Perhaps the most dreaded question of all, is when the interviewer asks, “do you have any questions” at the end of the interview process. This is another opportunity to show the employer that you care about the job. Always be prepared with a question. There is always something to learn and something you can ask. Look up and prepare thoughtful questions in order to gain more knowledge about the organization and job that you cannot find out from the internet.

5. The End:
The end of an interview is just as important as the beginning. You want to leave the interviewer with a great last impression. Thank them for their time in interviewing you and remain confident, polite and professional. On your way out, thank the receptionist. Within the next few days, be sure to send an email and a thank-you card to anyone you met during the interview process.

Interviews don’t have to be nerve-racking. Be confident in your qualifications, personality and professionalism and follow the steps above in order to be at ease through the interview process.

About DeShawn Manley 24 Articles
DeShawn is a Public Relations major, Class of 2015. She loves concerts, sporting events, and adventuring. Follow DeShawn on Instagram and Twitter: @deshawnmanley1.