- Examine the person specification and your CV and think about what type of interview questions they will ask you.
- Prepare answers for the main interview questions - for example, why do you want the job, what are your strengths and weaknesses, what makes you stand out from other candidates, what can you bring to the role.
- Follow up your answers with examples. Quote real examples of scenarios when you've used certain skills or demonstrated specific qualities. Just saying you've got a skill isn't enough, you must show evidence.
- When planning your examples, think about the impact of your actions. Was there a good outcome and what did you learn?
- Sell yourself. This is your chance to blow your own trumpet! Be positive about yourself, your experiences and your future potential.
- Prepare some questions to ask at the end - use this time to find out more about the role and the company. Positive questions about how the company works, details of the role or your potential development should be well received.
- Keep your answers focused on the value you can bring to the employer, not what they can do for you.
- Research the role, the organisation and their product/service, the sector as a whole and related current affairs. If you feel well-prepared you will be much more confident during the interview.
- You can never predict exactly what questions will be asked, but by thinking through your best examples before the interview, you’ll be better equipped to handle whatever is thrown at you.
- Try a practice run with a friend or family member.
- Work out where you need to go, transport links to Bath and Bristol are great but give yourself plenty of time. Arrange to have a look around the city or go for a coffee before the interview, that way you'll feel more relaxed.
- Above all, preparation is the key to performing well in interviews. Take time preparing for your interview and reading the related material.
Countdown to the interview
- Get your outfit ready the night before. Make sure you look professional.
- Find out where the venue is beforehand, how to get there and how long it takes.
- Report in for your interview 10 minutes before it is due to begin. This will give you time to compose yourself and take in the office surroundings.
- Turn off your mobile.
- You may like to print a copy of your CV and take it with you to the interview. Print it onto some good quality paper and make sure it stays crisp and well presented in a file or folder.
- Some people also like to take a small notepad and pen in case they need to take any notes at the end.
- Dress smartly, look bright and attentive. Speak clearly and confidently.
- Don't be arrogant; nothing turns off employers more than someone who is over-confident.
- Ensure you listen to what the interviewer is saying and allow them to finish their sentences before you answer their question.
- Take your time when answering the questions. Make sure you understand the question and take your time if you need to think.
- Try not to let your nerves show too much. A few nerves are normal but extreme nerves can affect your performance. Use breathing techniques and remember that whatever the outcome this is good experience.
- The interviewers want you to do well, they are taking time out of their busy day to meet with you. They aren’t there to catch you out.
- Smile, use eye contact and positive body language. Always look interested.
- Don't criticise former employers or colleagues. Remember to keep things positive.
- Enjoy yourself. This is your chance to talk about yourself and tell people how amazing you are!