Winning at interviews: Here's how you do it
Posted 2yr(s) ago Reading Time: A few minutes
Let’s face it – interviews are nerve wrecking. Whether it’s your first or fifteenth, meeting a potential employer always brings on the butterflies. After all, so much rides on the outcome – a paycheck, a career, your self-esteem, and perhaps even bragging rights.
Fortunately, the answer to calming your nerves is just to be prepared. And to help you walk into that interview room with confidence, we spoke to three Human Resource (HR) experts in the diverse world of engineering for quick tips on landing that dream job.
1. Nail your ABCs
According to HR veteran Saiful Amli from the Workforce Transformation team at Murata Singapore, the way to score big with the renowned manufacturing firm is to demonstrate a can-do attitude, ethical behaviour and good character.
To assess these traits, the interviewer will likely ask you to share examples of challenging episodes you’ve encountered and how you handled them. Did you exercise problem-solving capabilities? Did you communicate clearly with all parties involved? Were you loyal to your team?
As past behaviour is often a good predictor of future performance, your answer will reveal how well you embody your ABCs. So, come prepared with anecdotes that you are proud to share, and be ready to answer questions on navigating through tricky situations in the workplace.
2. Make the internet your best friend
“Nothing frustrates a hiring manager more than a candidate who knows close to zero about the organisation. While you may not get this 100% right, not having any research done (on the company) could potentially ruin your chances completely, no matter how well you performed on all the other segments of the interview,” advised Daryl Chooi, Senior Recruiter at Halliburton.
Spending a few good hours reading up on the company is a crucial way of giving yourself an edge over other candidates, particularly for a field that requires niche engineering capabilities. Researching about your prospective employer and showcasing your knowledge further speak volumes about your enthusiasm and passion for the job. And as a bonus, learn about what the company values are and find the right moment to weave that into the conversation. This will make you stand out for sure.
3. Remember that soft skills are just as important!
Finally, one of the most common mistakes that engineers make is over-relying on technical skills. Technical skills form the foundation of every good engineer, but what builds them up (and gets them through the door) is the ability to play well with others.
Talent Acquisition Specialist at Halliburton, Pamela Papilla, shares that her team has hired less technically proficient individuals over others who aced the technical tests more than once. Why? Because they showed that they would be good team players.
Aside from interaction, creativity in the form of finding new ways to look for solutions and clear communication are also other important aspects that hiring managers look for. The list goes on but you get the drift. Don’t underestimate soft skills and find a way to demonstrate this understanding when speaking to your interviewers.
And there you have it – three top tips for tipping the scales. So suit up, show up and crush that conversation.