Top tips on preparing for a job interview

Young woman working office.

You have done the hard work – applying for a job and getting an interview but how do you put yourself in the best position to land the role.

Preparation is key.  First impressions count, so making a positive impression is obviously going to increase your chances of success.

Here are some top tips to help you get ready:

Research the company:


Familiarise yourself with the company’s history, values, mission, products/services, recent news, and any notable achievements. This knowledge will show your genuine interest in the organisation and its work.

Understand the role:


Thoroughly review the job description to understand the responsibilities, qualifications, and skills required for the position. This will help you tailor your responses to show how your experience aligns with the role.

Review your CV:


Be ready to discuss your CV in detail, including past experiences, skills, and any gaps in employment. Keep it concise, 2 pages as a maximum and highlight key successes.

Practice common interview questions:


Prepare answers for common interview questions such as “Tell me about yourself,” “Why do you want to work here?” and “What is your greatest strength/weakness?” Practice your responses to ensure they are concise and highlight your relevant skills and experiences.

Prepare for technical questions (if applicable):


Zonal is a tech business and there are many roles that require technical skills – be prepared for technical questions or assessments. Research the company’s products and technical specialisms and practice problem-solving if needed.

Highlight your achievements:


Be ready to discuss your accomplishments and how they relate to the job you’re interviewing for. Remember to discuss your key achievements whenever possible to demonstrate your impact.

Ask questions:


A successful interview should be two-way traffic.  Show your enthusiasm and interest in the role , company, products and opportunities for growth by preparing questions to ask the interviewer. Some good examples are “What would a typical day look like for me?” or “What can your company offer in terms of learning and development opportunities?”

Dress appropriately:


Choose appropriate attire that aligns with the company’s dress code and industry norms. When in doubt, it’s better to be slightly overdressed than underdressed.

Positive interview technique and body language:


First impressions matter – be polite and professional to everyone you interact with, from the receptionist to the interviewer. The way you carry yourself conveys confidence and professionalism, so maintain eye contact, offer a firm handshake, and sit up straight. Remember to smile!

Understand the interview format:


Know whether the interview will be in-person, virtual, or a panel interview. Familiarise yourself with the technology and tools if it’s a virtual interview. Be set up and ready 5 minutes before the start. Check everything works, including the camera!

Plan your journey:


If the interview is in-person, plan your route in advance to ensure you arrive on time. Being punctual is crucial – so allow plenty of time for unscheduled delays.  If you do get caught out unexpectedly, then call your interview contact as soon as possible to explain the situation. Pack an umbrella!

Manage your nerves:


It’s normal to feel nervous, but practice relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing, to help manage your anxiety.

Post interview follow-up:


After the interview, send a thank you email expressing your appreciation for the opportunity and reiterating your interest in the position.

Remember, preparation is key. The more you prepare, the more confident and well-prepared you’ll feel on the day of the interview. Good luck!

We hope you have found our top tips helpful and wish you every success in landing your dream job.  Considered applying for a role at Zonal?  You can find our latest job roles here.

And if you liked this blog then you might also like to read How to make sure your CV is just the job.

If you are interested in a career at Zonal please click here.

Picture of Catriona Dick

Catriona Dick

Head of Human Resources