When you’re searching for a new role, sometimes the smallest details can cost you a job offer. This may seem unfair, however, when it comes to making the final decision if the employer has a couple of fantastic candidates to choose from the little things can make a big difference.
If you’re focused on your job search, then there’s no excuse for sloppy mistakes. Here are nine that you should definitely avoid.
1. Dressing too casually for your job interview
A job interview is your biggest opportunity to impress and yet many job seekers make the error of not dressing the part. If you dress to casually the interviewer may think that you are scruffy or aren’t taking the process seriously.
To get a good idea of how smart you need to dress, have a look at the company’s website and also on their employees’ LinkedIn profiles. If you’re working with a recruiter, be sure to ask them what you should wear.
2. Not conducting thorough interview research
Before you attend any job interview you should at the very least visit the company’s website and read any current news on them. Consider the company in relation to the job description and really think about how the role fits in and how you will make it a success.
Be prepared for the interview question, “Why do you want this job?” or “Why do you want to work here?”. Questions like these give you an ideal opportunity to show off your research and demonstrate your enthusiasm for the role and company.
3. Having no questions to ask your interviewer
You should always prepare a number of questions to ask at your interview. Having no questions suggests to the interviewer that you aren’t really interested in the opportunity or haven’t prepared well for your interview.
4. Forgetting to bring a notepad and pen
You will probably cover a lot of important details throughout the course of your interview and it is unlikely that you will remember them all. Having notes will help you later when it comes to making follow up emails and weighing up job offers. Plus, making notes shows that you’re keen!
5. Being unsure about the job description
Naturally, when searching for a new role you will be applying for a few opportunities at the same time. However, this can make things tricky when you receive phone calls and are invited to interviews. How can you be sure which job this interview is for? Do you sound stupid for asking?
The best way to get around this problem is to create yourself a job search spreadsheet. Every time you apply for a job, make a note of the job title, who the role is with and save a copy of the job description. This way, when a recruiter calls you will be ready and confident about the role on offer.
6. Not following up after an interview
Once you’ve completed a job interview you should always follow up. The best thing to do is to send a quick email thanking the interviewer for their time, highlighting some of the key areas of the role and company that you find exciting and saying you look forward to hearing from them.
7. Treating your first and second interview in the same way
If you’re invited to a second interview then the company is probably serious about hiring you which is great! However, don’t expect your second interview to be just like the first.
Second interviews usually take place with a more senior manager and key decision maker. You should be prepared to use all the knowledge you gained in your first interview to step things up a gear.
8. Forgetting what you heard at each interview
Asking questions that have already been answered or not using what you learnt in your first interview to your advantage are sloppy mistakes. Show that you were listening and that you have a good grasp of the company and role.
9. Tackling key issues at the last minute
If there are certain factors that are super-important to you in your next role then don’t leave it until the last minute to bring them up. If things like needing a flexible work schedule or wanting to work from home are deal breakers for you then discuss them in your first interview. Otherwise, you may be wasting your time and the company’s time.