If you’re currently on the job hunt, you know how exhausting it can be. Between writing new, personalized cover letters for each job you apply to and crafting a perfect resume, there’s a lot of work to be done if you want to best represent yourself during the hiring process. Plus, that’s not even bringing into consideration the effort it takes to make a great impression once you’ve landed an interview. If you feel like you’re at your wit’s end, here are five tips to keep in mind to ace your next job interview.
Make a resume that helps you stand out
When it comes to filling out a job application, you want to make sure that your resume is tailored to the job that you’re applying for. Unless the employer is asking for a CV, or curriculum vitae, you should pick and choose relevant work experience and leave off aspects of your resume that don’t directly connect to the job you’re applying for. Yes, you probably worked as a team and followed instructions in all of your previous roles, but if the industry isn’t super relevant, it’s best to leave them off. A more focused, easily-readable resume is ultimately much more impressive than a long-winded, over-stuffed document.
Follow all job application instructions
Even though it can be tempting to try and reuse different portions of your applications from company to company if you aren’t detail-oriented this can be a recipe for disaster. Following the application’s instructions is often a business’s first way of testing how carefully you read and take your time. For example, if your cover letter has to be a certain number of words or characters, it’s crucial that you follow these guidelines. Using an online word counter can help you meet these sorts of requirements. Read carefully, too, to see if there’s an expectation that you will upload certain documents a particular way.
Once you’ve landed your first interview, make sure to smile! Many times, a phone interview will be conducted before you go meet anybody in person. Even though you aren’t in the same room, you’ll want to make sure to smile over the phone, too, as it can help you sound friendlier. The last thing you want after spending so much time making your application perfect is to get ruled out because of your voice. By smiling, you help prevent this sort of thing from happening and make sure that you’re putting your best foot forward.
Dress to impress
Put simply: you don’t want to look like a mess if you’ve landed an in-person interview. Taking time to shower, put on deodorant, comb your hair, and apply makeup shows that you’ve put an effort into making a good impression. You’ll want to do a little research ahead of time, too, to see what the dress code is like for the job you’re interviewing for. If business casual is okay, and it’s wintertime, wearing one of your nicer petite sweaters could totally be appropriate. That being said, it never hurts to overdress a little bit when it comes to first impressions.
Ask good questions
Part of being a good interviewee is showing experience, but the other part is showing your own interest in the role and company you’re interviewing for. This comes down to asking questions that set you apart from other applicants and show that you’re invested in different aspects of the job. Keep in mind that there may be multiple people competing for your role at the same time, and illustrating that you’re eager to work in a role or company similar to the one you’ve applied for may give the hiring manager more confidence in the fact that you aren’t going to jump ship in six to twelve months.