Photo job interview

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Tips for the job interview

Tips for the job interview

If you are invited to a job interview, it usually means that the employer thinks you are an interesting candidate who is qualified for the advertised job. Most employers look at the interview as a conversation where they want to get to know you better. You also have the opportunity to ask questions to get to know more about the company and the employer. 

Prepare yourself for the interview

Read the announcement and the application carefully and be prepared to talk about everything you wrote in the application and CV. Find information about the company on their web pages. If you know someone working there, talk to the person to get tips to best prepare for an interview. 

Make sure you understand what job you have applied for and why you want this job. Be ready to describe your skills and provide examples of situations where your abilities have been useful. Read more about how to describe your competence.

Prepare a short presentation of yourself where you highlight what you think is important for them to know about you. Practice on the interview situation with friends.

Employers are looking for:

Enthusiasm and commitment. You have to appear to be genuinely interested in the current position. Listen carefully to their questions during the job interview. You can also ask questions about the position, the company, work environment or projects they are working on. This way you show the employer that you are interested in what they do.

Your motivation. Tell them why you wanted to apply for this particular job. What do you find appealing about the company and how can you contribute positively.

Good collaborative skills. How will you desribe your ability to collaborate with colleagues  and meet customers/clients.

Some types of job interviews

Traditional interview where you sit down with one or more persons from the employer or a recruitment office and answers questions. If it is a video interview, take a technology check and choose a good location for the sound and background.

Case interview may be individually or as a part  of a group. Here you get a business problem or a puzzle to solve, normally within the company’s expertise. The employer is not necessarily looking for the correct answer, but how you approach the challenge or how well you communicate with others. Trust yourself, and act professionally. If you are to give a presentation of your solution, stay within your time limit.

Personality tests assess how you normally think and act. This will help the employer to find a candidate whose character traits are best suited for a specific position. There are no right or wrong answers, so be honest! After all, it is difficult to predict what personality type they want for that particular job.

Skills testing may evaluate your ability for logical reasoning, how you acquire new knowledge or how you perform within specific areas as language, numeracy etc. The tests are normally a supplement to the interview.

Speed interviews is normally at career fairs, and may be a 5 to 20 minutes opportunity to present yourself to a recruiter for a chance to come in for a full interview.

10 common job interview questions

12 common job interview questions

  • Tell about yourself and why you apply for this position
  • What do you know about the company?
  • What do you think is most / least attractive with this job?
  • How did your education prepare you for this position and what challenges do you see?
  • What have you done previously that is relevant for this position?
  • What are you most proud of having achieved? 
  • Tell me a challenge you have met and how you dealt with this
  • What are your greatest professional strengths?
  • What role do you take in team projects?
  • What are your future goals?
  • What do you think you can bring to this company?
  • When can you start working with us?

7 questions you may ask in an interview

7 questions you may ask in an interview

  • What does a typical working day look like?
  • Can you give me examples of projects I will be working on?
  • Is there any training for new employees?
  • Can you tell me about the team or person I will work with most closely?
  • What is the company and team culture like?
  • What is your favorite part about working here?
  • What are the next steps in the hiring process?

We do not recommend asking about salary in the first interview, unless the interviewers ask you about your expectations. Be careful not to ask questions they have already answered.

Body language during the job interview

Body language during the job interview

  • Appear genuinely interested in the current position.

  • Fixed handshake, eye contact and smile.

  • It is important that it does not smell cigarettes of you.

  • When sitting, keep your back straight and keep your arms and legs calm. Do not let a shaking foot draw attention from what you say.

Girl in a moving car looking ahead

Counselling for NTNU students

Counselling for NTNU students

Meet one of our advisers in Trondheim for career counselling. Counselling is also available on skype or phone