Going for Your First Job Interview? Here Are 9 Tips to Ace The Interview


Before you get too happy about finally graduating from University, the horror of finding a job creeps in.

Looking for a job is a stressful experience for many Singaporeans. It is quite discouraging to keep attending interviews and never getting hired.

For those who are first timers, it is especially difficult because they have no experience at all in handling interviewers. There are verbal and non-verbal skills that can help an interviewee to emerge successful during an interview.

The following are 9 tips which will help a first time candidate to prepare well and go through the interview smoothly:

1. Emphasise On Strengths


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Some interviewers may ask you to give some details about yourself.

You should answer this question by describing some personal strengths which will be beneficial to the company if you are hired.

For example, you could mention that you have good organisational skills as well as the ability to complete tasks efficiently within given deadlines.

It will also be helpful if the you describe some practical examples of cases where these positive qualities have yielded good results.

You will then have painted a picture of being an all-round asset to the company, both professionally as well as in other valuable skills.

2. Do Some Thorough Research About The Company

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It is important for you to do some comprehensive research on the company as well as the job position being offered.

Details such as the company structure, the market position of the company, the competitors, the target clientele as well as any other relevant facts are things you should note about the company before going for the interview.

This will put you in an excellent position to answer any questions with reference to the vision and the strategies of the company.

The interviewer will also be impressed to note that you have made the extra effort to find out extra details about the organisation and the position needed. This will show that you have a genuine desire to be part of the company.

3. Research On Possible Questions To Be Asked

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You can get a sample of several questions that are frequently asked during interviews.

These can be found in books and articles that provide helpful tips. You should choose questions that are relevant to his or her education level and age bracket.

It will be helpful to have answers ready for all types of possible questions. This will enable you to be more confident during the interview and answer the questions smoothly because there has been adequate preparation.

4. Dress Appropriately

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During an interview, the first impression always counts.

Research has shown that many interviewers make a mental decision about a candidate within the first five minutes of the interview.

Dress code and general physical appearance contributes greatly to forming an opinion about yourself. You need to look the part with decent, smart clothing.

You be clean and groomed, especially nails and hair. It is preferable not to wear very strong offensive perfume for the sake of the comfort of the interviewer.

Looking clean and well-dressed will give the interviewer the impression that you are taking the job opportunity very seriously. This increases your chances of getting hired.

5. Body Language

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Body language is another very important factor during an interview.

Maintaining eye contact indicates that you are confident and transparent as you answer the questions. The interviewee should also maintain a good posture throughout the interview session, this tends to show enthusiasm and energy.

Punctuality is also key. You should arrive early for the interview because this is an indicator of your commitment towards getting the job.

6. Prepare Some Intelligent Questions

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Most interviewers will ask you if you have any question during the end of the interview. It’s not advisable for you to answer in the negative.

This could be interpreted as a lack of interest in the company’s operations. It is advisable for you to be prepared with two or three intelligent questions.

One example would be to inquire about the company policies and strategic plans. Asking such questions shows that you have genuine interest in the progress of company.

7. Be Authentic

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You should never fall into the trap of trying to be someone else.

Interviewers usually notice quickly when a candidate is not being authentic. You should provide genuine facts about your abilities.

It is better to be honest about areas where he or she is deficient. This can be mentioned in a positive way. For example, you could mention that you are a quick learner and will be able to catch up in areas where there is a deficiency.

8. Have A Positive Attitude

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Some questions may be asked by the interviewer in a negative way.

For example, you could be asked to state which units or modules that you disliked while studying. You should answer this question without being negative.

One good answer would be to mention that you have always maintained a positive attitude while studying, which resulted in the successful completion of all units including the difficult ones.

Any other questions should be answered by taking a similar positive approach.

9. Send A Note Of Appreciation

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It is always a good thing for you to appreciate the interviewer for taking time with him or her. Sending a thank you note and follow up email will give a very positive signal to the interviewer.

This may even raise the chances of you getting hired. It is best to send the note of appreciation within one or two days of the interview. This is because the interviewer will still have the details of you in mind.

The above points will be helpful for any candidate going for an interview for the first time. Both the verbal and non-verbal skills are equally important. The non-verbal skills such as body language, dress code and punctuality will give the interviewer a very clear perspective of the true character of the candidate. You should be careful to use all the available skills to emerge successful.