How can I prepare for my interview?

So you’ve been shortlisted and have an interview date in the diary – congratulations!

Remember it’s your interview and you need to decide the approach that right’s for you.

We can’t stress enough how important preparation for an interview is, and what a difference it’ll make to your performance on the day.

We’ve picked out some key points for you to think about, but it’s not an exhaustive list.

It would be a good idea to familiarise yourself with the documents below as it’s likely that the interview questions will be related to them:

  • The job description
  • The job advert
  • Your CV/application form

Your interviewer may take elements of the job description, person specification and application form in their questions, so being prepared will stand you in good stead.

It’ll also be a good idea to get clued up on what we’re all about too so you can have a good understanding of how you’d fit in within our organisation.

Feel free to take your own notes into the interview and remember to take your time, think through each question and by all means skip a question if you get stuck and ask to come back to it later on.

Before the interview begins, make yourself comfortable in the seat and take a deep breath to calm your nerves.  This will give you a moment or two to  think about what you are going to say, before you start speaking.

Make sure you are concise

Preparing examples will help you with this, but you should also make sure that you listen carefully to the questions asked.

When you give your example, make sure you briefly set the scene and keep in mind the STAR technique, following the advice on our providing examples page

Be honest

If you struggle for an example to a certain question, don’t try to cover it up by giving examples that are not relevant. Instead, talk about how you’d approach the situation. 

What questions should I ask?

It’s a two-way interview; you are deciding if you want to work with us too and this may mean you have questions too.

Concentrate on issues important to you and combine an interest in our organisation with an interest in the job.

Look through the job pack and identify if there are any areas that you’d like to know more about. Try to get an insight into what it is like to work for Circle Housing.

What will the interviewer be doing?

While you’re talking, the interviewer(s) will be making notes on your responses – don’t let this put you off.

We’ll try and make you as comfortable as possible, helping you perform well on the day and guiding you through the interview asking relevant questions.

Don’t judge your performance on how much is being written – every interviewer has their own style of recording what’s being said.

You may be interrupted when you’re talking – this is normal in an interviewer question. It will probably be because you’ve said something they want to find out more about. Don’t be put off by this approach.

The most important thing is to be yourself. Good luck!