Interviewing - Getting That Job

by Jane Tredgett


Whether you are attending an interview

  • For a job vacancy in a new organisation
  • As a way of getting an internal promotion
  • To offer your services as a volunteer for charity work or
  • As a student for a vacancy on an educational course

... being able to write a good application form and present yourself well is an essential skill and one that differentiates you from the majority who don’t like interviews, and who under-prepare and undersell themselves.

While there are many good interviewees, there are far more who perform badly. Many get by-passed at the application form stage and have a low conversion rate of application to interview, while others submit fabulous application forms but dry up in the interview itself. Either way, this can lead to frustration – being stuck in a job you no longer want to do, seeing that vacancy go to someone else, spending lots of time form filling without ever reaping the rewards...

Effective interviewees, on the other hand, have more choices. Doors seem to open for them and they progress through life more smoothly, achieving career and development goals others may only be able to dream of!

Success at interviews is not just based on natural ability, although some interviewees are more naturally skilled than others and instinctively know how to present themselves well. For most, the art lies in recognising how to influence and persuade others in this very specific communication scenario. It is about recognising what the person doing the recruiting is looking for and aligning your strengths with their needs, without lying or completely bending the truth!

This process will be shared with you in this topic. The language used focuses on a job application, but the skills and techniques are much the same if you are being interviewed as a volunteer or for a student placement. It is designed to flow as a chronological journey and provide hints and tips along the way.

Interviewing as part of the recruitment process

Interviewing is just one aspect of a complex jigsaw of pieces, the combination of which determines whether or not an appropriate candidate is appointed. This process involves

  • Defining what the appropriate candidate will be like – what qualities they need to meet the demands of the job and what experience is required
  • Advertising appropriately (right place/right time/right method) to attract the right candidate
  • Sorting the applications and selecting who should be interviewed
  • Informing the candidates of the decision
  • Organising the interviews – venue/time/date and so on
  • Running the interviews
  • Following up.

In this topic, we will focus primarily on how you can influence the decision positively from the point when the interviewer sorts the applications.