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Hints and tips on attending an interview

The interview process is often a daunting experience. It is important that you have the right skills and experience for the job but it is also important that you are able to convey the skills and experience you have on the day.

If you are in the right mood and have prepared for your interview you are more likely to present your skills and experience well and present a better picture of yourself as the right person for the job.

If you are invited for an interview at Hampshire County Council then you will have already achieved a huge amount. However the following provides some basic tips on how to improve your chances at interview.

Prepare for the interview

There are a number of key areas where you need to prepare before your interview that will ensure you have the confidence and knowledge to present yourself in the best way possible to the people interviewing you.

Do your homework about Hampshire County Council and the Department.  The Council has an excellent web site that will give you access to all of the information you will need.

Ensure that you have read the summary role profile and person specification which is available on-line (logon to ‘My Applications’ where you will find your application and the summary role profile and person specification). Make some notes on how you can demonstrate that you have the necessary skills and experience that is being asked for and your recent achievements.

Think about some questions that you may be asked and consider how you might answer them.

The week before your interview

Be sure you know the following information about your interview:

  • the time

  • the date

  • the location

  • the name(s) of the interviewer(s)

Work out how you are going to get to the interview location, and how long it will take. Try to anticipate any delays that could make you late.

Ensure that you have all the documents you have been asked to bring with you to the interview.

The day of your interview

Plan to arrive at the interview 15 minutes before the time of the interview.

On arrival, ensure that the receptionist knows you have arrived

The interview itself

The following are a few important points to remember during the interview:

  • a smile is the most positive signal you can give

  • maintain regular eye contact

  • try to adopt an open, honest and confident attitude

  • speak clearly and with confidence

  • listen to the questions you are asked it is OK to pause before answering a question so that you can think about what you are going to say

  • keep to the point but ensure you answer the question (avoid yes and no answers)

  • relax and remember that the interview is designed to allow you to demonstrate what you can do – not try to trick you into making mistakes!

  • Good luck!