When you are doing a job search, there is a lot of preparation involved – putting together a compelling cover letter and resume, networking, and preparing for the interview. But one of the most important things you can do to make your job search a success involves not just working hard, but working smart as well. It involves putting yourself in the place of the employer, looking at the hiring process from his or her point of view.
The employer is looking to see who best fits the job and who will most add value to the business. So, what you as a job candidate need to do is think about what the hiring manager needs to know in order to decide whether to make you an offer.
In order to do this, the first thing you need to do is learn as much as you can before hand – about the company and the job. You can use sources that are available to the public, as well as the company website. Look at the job description and the requirements for the job. This is the minimum that you should do.
But you can do more. You can use the products made by the company. You can talk to the people who work at the company. You can talk to the people who supply the company, as well as customers of the company. You should ask them about the company, and about the job you are applying for and how they see the job.
Also, you should be ready with questions of your own during the interview. They should be questions that go beyond just the basic information. For example, Barnett says, don’t waste time asking a consumer marketing company if they do market research – it’s obvious they do. But ask them, for example, how their market research influences product design.
Show that you are the person for the job by explaining how your skills and background match what they are looking for. Think about what the interviewer may ask, and be prepared to show how you would handle gaps between your background and what they are looking for.
Show them how you would do the job by explaining how you would deal with the challenges it presents. You can present ideas to them about how you believe the job would be, and then work off of their reaction