TL;DR – Graduating with a bachelor degree is just the first step to getting a job. Here are some tips to prepare yourself before the interview.
Getting a job has never been more competitive as a fresh batch of highly educated graduates enters the workforce.
Referring to a viral video on Douyin, a Chinese national woman broke down and questioned the point of attaining a university degree. She submitted over 800 job applications and only heard back from 30 companies. Even then, none of the 30 companies offered her a job.
This is the fear of many Singaporeans but the paper chase culture continues because of the fear of missing out (FOMO) on better job opportunities and prospects.
In January this year, Deputy Prime Minister Lawrence Wong spoke at the National University of Singapore’s (NUS) Institute of Public Policy Studies (IPS) Singapore Perspective Conference, “Employers can do more to hire, train and recognize all workers, instead of holding them back unfairly based on their starting qualifications.”
Preparation for the interview is key to increasing your chances of landing the job. Here are some steps you can take:
1. Research the Company
Before going for an interview, you must research the company you’re interviewing with. Understanding the company’s mission, values, and history can help you tailor your responses during the interview. You can start by visiting the company’s website and reading through their About Us page, blogs, and news section. You can also look up recent press releases, financial statements, and reviews from current or former employees. Doing this research will give you a better understanding of the company culture, products, services, and current events that might impact the company.
2. Review the Job Description
The job description is the most important document to review before an interview. Make sure you understand the key responsibilities and requirements of the role, so you can communicate your qualifications effectively. You can also use the job description to prepare responses to potential interview questions. Review your resume to ensure it aligns with the job description and highlights relevant experience and skills.
3. Prepare responses to common interview questions
Most interviews involve some common questions that you should prepare to answer. For example, “Tell me about yourself,” “Why do you want to work for us?” and “What are your strengths and weaknesses?” Prepare your responses to these questions ahead of time, and practice delivering them with confidence. You can also prepare responses to behavioral questions that assess your past experiences, such as “Tell me about a time you overcame a challenge.”
4. Practice with a Mock Interview
Mock interviews are an excellent way to prepare for an interview. Ask a friend or family member to act as the interviewer and conduct a practice interview with you. This can help you identify areas where you need to improve and give you an opportunity to refine your responses to interview questions. You can also record yourself during the mock interview and review the video to identify areas where you need to improve your body language, tone, or delivery.
5. Plan your outfit and transportation
On the day of the interview, you want to present yourself as professional and put-together. Plan your outfit in advance, and make sure it’s appropriate for the company’s dress code. You should also plan your transportation, so you arrive at the interview location on time. Consider driving or taking public transportation and plan to arrive at least 15 minutes early to give yourself time to check in and settle in.
Preparing for an interview requires time, effort, and attention to detail. By following these steps in preparing ahead, you can increase your chances of success on the big day. Remember to stay calm, be confident, and let your personality shine through during the interview.