Let the job searching process begin! It’s that time of year again where many undergraduate students are starting the job hunt and dreading the most important part — the interview process. Interviews are intimidating because they are the determining factor of acceptance or rejection but the interview itself doesn’t have to be scary. Continue reading for the best practices on how to ace the interview.
- Research, research, research!
Many people go into the big interview without having done any prior research on the company. Researching the company is a key component to making sure that the recruiters know you are passionate about the company and genuinely want to work there. Make sure you know their mission statement or any big changes they are making in order to prove that you have conducted research and are determined to get the job.
- Prepare and sleep the night before.
The morning of the interview is bound to be stressful. Getting enough sleep is essential to making sure you present the best version of yourself during the interview.
Tip: Lay everything out that you will need the night before to save you some stress and time in the morning.
- Arrive 15 minutes early.
Give yourself extra time the morning of the interview. You cannot control traffic, commuting time or any unexpected circumstances. Make sure to plan ahead and leave earlier than expected but do not arrive to the interview location more than 15 minutes in advance. Having this amount of time will allow you to get a feel for the company environment, show timeliness and let you recollect any last minute thoughts.
- Follow up with a handwritten thank-you note.
Completing this tip is what can set you apart from another candidate. After the interview, be sure to not only send an email to the interviewer thanking them for their time and consideration but also send a handwritten thank–you note within 24-48 hours of the interview. This note can be more personal, including something specific that you talked about during the interview.
To recap, these are the four best tips to make sure that you leave a lasting impression after the interview. Follow these steps and you will likely hear back from the company soon!
Leila Ostria is a senior at James Madison University majoring in communication studies with a concentration in PR and pursuing a minor in Spanish. Leila serves as the vice president for JMU’s chapter of PRSSA and vice president of the Madison Dance Club. In the future, Leila hopes to be working in the entertainment or fashion fields of PR.