You applied for a job, sent in your cover letter and resume and VOILA! The company has called you back for an interview! What’s next? Well, there’s no other way to put it but, it’s all about preparation. Research the company so you don’t go into the job interview looking clueless.
Where to do your research
The best resource is the Internet. However, going out of your way to contact a current or previous employee about the company doesn’t hurt either. Either way, you need to know where to look and what to look for so you’re efficient in order bring all the relevant information to the job interview.
Check the company’s website
This is the first thing anyone should do. Almost all companies and organizations have a website filled with useful content. A company’s website is kind of like a one-stop-shop for your research, so technically you can get away with using only their website to do your research. Start with the basics and go to their “About Us’ section where you will get an overview of the company. You will find the company’s history, their achievements, future goals, current projects they’re working on, employee profiles and many more.
Tip: Even if you’re not searching for a job, click on their ‘Careers’ or ‘Find a Job’ tab because some companies may have step-by-step information about their hiring process. There may also be helpful tips about the candidate they are looking for and advice on how to format and write your resume and cover letter.
Check the company’s social media pages
This is where you will find all the “fun fluff” that you won’t find on their official website. By looking through their company page’s photo album, you can get an excellent glimpse of their company culture and what and who they are involved with.
Studying the page’s content and how they phrase their words can also help you get a feel for whether they are more laid back or more corporate. Also, look at who the company is interacting with and how they’re interacting on Twitter.
Check news articles and videos:
The news gives you the latest information on everything that is going on. Use this to your advantage – type in “[company name] news” and everything that has been written about them will appear on your screen. The good thing about search engines is that they list the most recent articles about the company at the top, which is what you want. Click on a few of the headlines and see what going on with the company. You can find out how involved they are with the public and the community as well as information about their products and business strategies.
Talk to people:
Try going on to LinkedIn and look up anyone that has worked at the company currently or previously. Talking to real people can help you get information you can’t get on the Internet, like a personal perspective of their experience as an employee.
This shows initiative and they may spread the good word to your hiring manager. You’ll never know!
Part 2 on how to prepare yourself for different types of interviews will be up tomorrow. Stay tuned!