Interview Preparation

The preparation you do for an interview can be the key to landing the job. There are three key things to do when preparing for an interview:

1. Research the company and the work they do.

2. Arrange some interview practice that covers tough and common interview questions.

3. Look for background information about the individual you are interviewing with.

Start with Research

Visit the website of the organisation and ensure that you understand the scale and breadth of their operations. Use tools like Vault, Bloomberg or Hoovers to get an overview of the enterprise and its industry profile. Check their social media channels as this may help Identify the skills, values and experiences that the organisation is seeking.

Look for a company mission statement and any information about their culture and values as well as products and services. Check the financial reports and also look at their press releases, you may find useful information about growth and stability.

Establish the main competitors and have a quick look at their websites. Try to look at relevant trade association websites or publications so you achieve some perspective on the marketplace.

Interview Practice

Ask a friend or a group of friends and colleagues to ask you some typical questions. If you can, record the practice sessions and check your body language and verbal presentation. Minimise verbal fillers, like “uh,” and “um” and be aware of habits like gesticulating, head-dipping or defensive posture.

Practice lends fluency, have someone you know try to help you with some questions that may crop up:

  • Why did you leave your last job?
  • Take me through your career history.
  • Outline a major achievement in your last role.
  • Tell me about a project that went wrong and why?
  • What was your most difficult challenge as a manager?
  • Tell me about what you do outside work.

Many interviews include competency or strength based questions, and for some roles you may be asked technical or commercial questions, so think about how you will answer these questions.

Background Information

Check the company website to see if the interviewer has a bio on the site; depending on the size of the company and seniority of the interviewer you may find them on Bloomberg. Don’t forget Google, you may find something useful.

See if you can find the interviewer on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter. Are there contacts who you both know or follow? Think about questions that you might want to ask the interviewer; people love talking about themselves, so see if you can do enough research to ask thought-provoking questions about them. LinkedIn may alert you to mutual connections; inside information is always useful so, if you can, talk to people who know your interviewer and who have worked with them in the past.


Send a thank-you message after the interview. Be sure to ask when you may follow up after the interview, and contact the appropriate person after the stated date. Good luck!

For further interview preparation support contact us on 0333 240 8115 or email

Posted: Monday 21 May 2018

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