Interview and assessment centre support

Interview and assessment centre support

Below you will find interview and assessment centre hints and tips to help you succeed at this cruical stage of the recruitment process. We have prepared a page here about how to prepare for a virtual interview. 

Before the interview

You may be able to arrange an informal visit or telephone call with the Recruiting Manager to find out more about the job or team. If you really want the job, then it shows how keen you are to find out more. 

Prepare for questions

You will not know exactly what questions you will be asked, but you can use the job description and person specification to think what questions are likely to be asked. Put yourself in the interview's shoes and think what skills and competences they are looking for. Think of examples you can give to back up what you say. For example, if you say you are a good communicator, describe an occasion when you used your communication skills to good effect. It is good to have examples of what you have achieved or skills you have used. 

Practice out loud

It helps to practice your answers out loud - do not think 'oh yes, I will talk about when I worked for ABC organisation' as what is in your head still needs to be shaped into sentences and communicated to your interviewees. 

Do your research

You may be asked what you know about the Trust, so do your homework. You should also take a look at the latest developments or research in the field which relates to the job you have applied for as you may well be asked for your views or knowledge on this. 

Look the part

Your appearance alone will not get you a job, even if on a video call, but if you turn up scruffy for an interview, the panel's first impression is likely to be that you do not care about getting the job. Make sure you are clean and presentable, and they will see that you have made an effort. You do not have to buy a new suit, but yuo might want to make sure your shoes are polished, your clothes fit correctly, and that your accessories / makeup are not distracting. 

Presentation on the subject of...

If you are invited to make a presentation you can be imaginative but make sure you have answered the question and thought about the style of the company. Do not write long sentences and just read them out - bullet points are best so you can talk around them. Practice the presentation and time how long it takes as you may not be allowed to go over the stated time and may miss your most important points, pausing for breath, and speaking clearly. 

You may need to do a presentation over a view, therefore make time to practice showing your presentation to a family member or friend using the same video call software. 

Do not try to rush through to get it over with. 

Stay calm

Good preparation is key in control. If asked to attend a face-to-face interview, plan your journey allowing extra time for any unexpected delays. Get everything ready the day before the interview. If you are nervous about the journey and being on time, travel the route beforehand to be sure you know where you are going and how it will take to get there and where you will be able to park. 

Prepare your own questions

It is a good idea to ask some questions at interview to demonstrate your interest in the position. It shows you have really thought about what it will be like to work in that job or for that company. Ask two or three questions at most. Too many may look as though you did not do your research beforehand. You could prepare 4 or 5 questions as some may be covered in the interview and you will look as if you were not paying attention if you ask them again. You might ask about working arrangements, development opportunities, or about projects and plans, culture of the department, or company. Do not ask about pay - save that for the negoation after the interview if you are offered the job.