Job candidates know that preparation is important to stand out in a job interview. You need to do your research on the company if you want to impress the hiring manager. The obvious place to look is the company website. But this is just the beginning. There are other places to check out as well if you want to do a thorough job. The more you know about the company, the better you will look at the interview. Here are some things to look at.
1. Read the job description carefully
Many people simply skim through it, but this is a mistake. The job description can give you important clues as to what the company is really interested in and what they are looking for in a job candidate. Read it meticulously, paying close attention to how they describe themselves, what skills, education and experience are required, and what the duties of the job are.
Jot down the ways in which you satisfy the requirements for the job and how you have proven your ability to handle the duties of the job. Highlight your strengths.
2. Put together a list of accomplishments
Write down examples of how you used your skills. Show how you successfully met a challenge or difficult situation, solved a problem, created a new process, supervised a team, or innovated.
Use the STAR structure to frame your examples. S is for the situation, what were the circumstances. T is for task, the goal you were trying to accomplish. A is for action, the action that you took to achieve the goal. And R is for result, what you accomplished.
3. Look at the company’s website
Familiarize yourself with the products and services of the company. Look at the press releases or other news about the company, and find out what you can about the company leadership.
4. Use Google, DuckDuckGo and YouTube
On the company website, you will naturally only read good things about the company. Searching on these other sites will give you different viewpoints about the company and what others think of it. You may get some idea of problems that the company is having, areas where they need to improve. You can use this to demonstrate to the hiring manager how you can help them solve their problems.
Also, look at any videos of their products. If any of their executives appear in videos at conferences, watch them as well.
5. Other sources of information.
Read the annual report, which provides financial information about the company. Look at the LinkedIn and Facebook profiles of the company. Check out Glassdoor.com to see what the reviews say about the company.
If you can, take a trip to the company before the interview and look around. This will give you an idea how long your travel time will be. You will also be able to observe the employees. How do they look? Do they appear engaged or stressed?
And before you leave for the interview, do a quick search on Google News for the latest news about the company.