Nailing the Job Interview

You only get one chance to make a perfect first impression! You have made it through the first round of applying for a job, congratulations! Now you need to nail the job interview.

Make the perfect first impression:

It is important to have a good understanding of New Zealand business etiquette and be familiar with the expectations towards a job applicant. Good preparation is the key to your successful job interview, as it will empower you to be a confident applicant.

Questions our clients ask us:

"How formal will the interview be? What shall I wear? What kind of questions should I expect to be asked? Is it appropriate to talk about my career prospects within the company? What kind of questions am I allowed to ask? What is the best way to talk about my salary expectations? Can I follow-up afterwards to get feedback? What can I reply if I am asked about my visa status?"

Candidates are often surprised to find out that the job application and interview process can be quite different in some aspects from what is expected in their country of origin. Not knowing where you stand and how to present yourself will make you less confident than you should be!

Be prepared to answer these common interview questions:

1. “Can you tell me about yourself?”

This commonly-asked question is designed to be an icebreaker. It allows the employer to weed out those candidates who may be tempted to divulge their whole life story. They are looking for a brief, concise description of who you are and your key qualifications, strengths and skills.

2. “What attracted you to our company?”

Employers can gauge the level of enthusiasm the candidate has for your company with this one. It also tests whether the candidate has done their research. At a minimum, you should be able to tell them how long the company has been established and the industry it operates in.

This question is also a useful way to find out if the candidate has performed specific research into the company’s culture and values. Cultural fit is important and this is a perfect opportunity to find out if the candidate’s personal values resonate with the company’s mission and values.”

3. “Describe your greatest accomplishment in your previous role.”

This question helps to eliminate candidates that may make a great impression and interview well, but don’t necessarily have the substance to back it up.

4. “What are your strengths?”

To answer this question, a candidate needs to be able to identify two or three of their best attributes. They also need to be able to provide concrete examples of the strengths and articulate how they are relevant to the job they are interviewing for.

You could also be asked what your weaknesses are. Employers are not looking for clichés such as ‘I’m a perfectionist’, but something that demonstrates self-awareness and a desire for personal development.

5. “What are your goals for the future?”

This question establishes the candidate’s level of ambition and the extent to which they have planned their career. Employers look for signs that you want to grow, learn and add value.

6. “Why do you want to leave your current employer?”

Candidates should never say anything negative about their current employer, no matter how strong their feelings are for leaving.

Employers are looking for positives in the answer, such as signs that the candidate desires more responsibility, a new experience or a challenge, rather than being fed up.

How can we help you impress at the interview?

Our Job Search Professionals will prepare and coach you to improve your interview skills and present yourself confidently to New Zealand employers. You will be empowered to be a competent and convincing job applicant with a competitive advantage over other applicants.

If you show that you have prepared yourself carefully for the interview, New Zealand employers will see that you are committed and genuinely interested in working for them. They will be impressed! You will leave the best possible impression!  

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