Tips on how to impress a potential employer

HELPFUL tips are being offered to job-seekers preparing to meet a potential employer.

Jackie McGreal, customer services operations manager for Jobcentre Plus Northumberland, believes that preparation is the key to success.

And to assist Northeast Press’s Keep Northumberland Working campaign, she has come up with useful advice to help job-hunters ready to meet a potential employer.

Jackie said: “The thought of a job interview fills most people with a mix of excitement and dread.

“Excitement at the prospect of a new job and a fresh start and dread at the possible barrage of tricky questions to overcome first.

“While it’s understandable to feel a bit anxious before an interview, jobseekers should remember that if they do get through to the interview stage, they stand a good chance.

“One of the most important things you can do before an interview is to find out as much as you can about the employer and the job you’re going for.

“The more you know about their business and their customers, the easier it will be for you to explain how your skills and experience make you the right person for the job.

“Make a list of likely questions in advance and practise possible answers.

“Practising out loud will help you to answer questions in a fluent and natural way.

“You don’t want to sound as if you’ve learned a script.

“If you were sent a job description and person specification, study them carefully. They will give strong clues about likely questions.

“You should also dress for success. Remember, first impressions count.

“When you are called to interview, enter the room confidently, shake hands firmly and introduce yourself. Look the interviewer in the eye, and remember to smile.

“That first minute is crucial – the employer will form a mental impression of you and you need it to be a positive one.”

For more interview tips visit www.direct.gov.uk