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Interview Tips

You’ve made it to the interview stage! Now it’s time to put in the right preparation to ensure you do yourself justice and secure the role.

No matter what stage you are in your career, interviews can be a nerve-wracking prospect. That’s why our expert recruitment team at Harvey Lawrence has pulled together their top preparation tips to help you walk into your interview with confidence.

Do your research

An interviewer is likely to ask you what you know about the business which is why it’s crucial you do your homework beforehand. Head to the company website and look at recent news stories to read up on them and their latest projects. Always talk to people you know that either work there or have worked there before. Getting an inside track of what it is really like is key. Something that many people don’t do but probably should, is find out about the company’s financial position by either viewing the latest set of accounts or doing a credit check.   

Also, try and find out as much about the interviewer as possible through your online research or by talking to mutual contacts. Try to understand their background in terms of job discipline, projects they are involved with and their previous employers.​

Plan your journey

Being late is a no-no, so make sure you map out the route to the interview in order to calculate your travel time, whether that’s in a car or via public transport. Also, be mindful of the time of day that you’ll be travelling in case there’s increased traffic that might affect your journey. In some circumstances, you can’t avoid being late, so ensure you have the name and telephone number of the interviewer so you can get in touch to let them know when to expect you.

Know your CV

It may sound obvious, but you need to know your CV inside out. Your interviewer is likely to have a copy in front of them and may ask questions linked to what you’ve written. It’s important to answer these questions confidently as if you look unsure it might lead them to question your honesty. If you know there are aspects of your CV that may prompt questioning, put prior thought into your responses such as why you made certain moves. Equally, if you feel that are certain projects and achievements that you are proud of or are relevant to the role on offer, make sure that you highlight them.

Prepare some questions

You will usually get asked if you have any questions at the end of an interview, so have some prepared. Questions may naturally arise during the interview but don’t rely on that being the case. If you need help coming up with questions then perhaps ask about upcoming projects and business strategy. Don’t be afraid to interview the interviewer and ask them directly what they think the business has to offer in terms of progression. It’s always an idea to ask what type of person generally fits in culturally and what the staff retention rates are. Conversely, it might be that they have experienced staff turnover for a specific reason that has been isolated and therefore shouldn’t be a barrier. It’s always better to gain an understanding rather than make assumptions.    

​Guidance and advice

When you work with Harvey Lawrence, we will ensure you are fully briefed and prepared for an interview. We also offer additional support and coaching if you find interviews a challenge to ensure you have the best possible chance of landing that all-important role in construction. The interview has developed massively over the last twenty years and more often is an informal chat, but one thing remains, it needs to be a two-way conversation so that both interviewer and interviewee can make the right decision.

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