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Questions in a competency-based interview are used to assess the specific competencies of an individual, as opposed to relevant work experience. Whilst these questions will still cover a candidate’s experience, the interviewer will be trying to ascertain if they have a particular set of skills which will be of benefit to the role and the company as a whole. Candidates will be asked for real life examples of situations they have been in which will demonstrate their behaviour type and indicate how they may react in future work scenarios.
A typical question could be “Tell me about a time when you had to deal with conflict within a team.” Your response can be about a professional work scenario or an example from a personal situation, such as university or a hobby. By asking this question, the interviewer is looking to understand your team skills and your ability to manage conflict, both of which may be crucial to the role you are interviewing for.
The best way to prepare for a competency-based interview is to study the job description and identify the main competencies and then think of real examples that demonstrate your experience and capabilities in these areas. Find some relevant practice questions online, or ask your recruitment agent for relevant questions, and prepare your potential answers in advance. Try and vary the scenarios you use as examples, as this will demonstrate the breadth of your experience and will give the interviewer more material to consider.
Please do look out for the Business Panel section of the Jersey Evening Post on a Wednesday as Andrew Baudains is part of the Panel. In this article we look at how you can make that all important first impression at interview.
Interviews can be nerve-wracking, but it’s important to appear confident and self-assured when you meet your interviewer for the first time. By arriving a few minutes early, you give yourself the opportunity to relax slightly before your meeting and to compose yourself if the nerves are getting to you. Also, dress to impress – make sure you are appropriately dressed for the environment you are looking to work in, this will demonstrate to the interviewer that you are taking the role (and yourself) seriously. Another important thing to remember is to smile! The interviewer is wondering how you will fit into their company and into the team you’re hoping to join, so a friendly face will help start the interview positively. Do your homework – make sure you’ve researched the company and the person(s) interviewing you. If you understand where they fit into the business, you can make your questions more specific to them, which will further reinforce your interest in the role and create a good impression. Finally, and it should go without saying, switch your mobile phone to silent. The last thing you want on meeting your potential future boss for the first time is for your phone to start ringing! Put it on silent and put it in your pocket as soon as you walk into the building, now is the time to focus on your interview and not Facebook!
- Conduct your Research. Make sure you know about the company you are interviewing with – not only will this allow you to understand the business better, it will also help you come up with potential questions to ask. If you have been given the names of the people who will interview you, find out as much as you can about them before you meet. It might ease your nerves if you know they have a similar background to you!
- Prepare, prepare, prepare. Before the interview, confirm where it will be taking place and make sure you know how to get there. On the day, allow plenty of time for your journey and aim to arrive 10 minutes before the allocated appointment. This will give you an opportunity to gather your nerves, complete any necessary paperwork and observe the environment you may end up working in.
- First impressions. Think carefully about what you’re going to wear, you should look smart and professional even if the business generally takes a more relaxed approach to office attire. Greet your interviewer with a firm handshake and a friendly smile, both powerful tools when creating a first impression.
- Body language. Maintain eye contact with your interviewer, don’t fold your arms or fidget and make sure you speak clearly and concisely – if your interviewer feels like you don’t want to be there or they have to constantly ask you to repeat yourself, they’ll lose interest in you very quickly.
- Review commonly asked interview questions. You can prepare answers in advance to some of the most frequently asked questions. Try not to memorise answers, as your aim is to come across as natural as possible, but it’s always good to have a few responses ready to go.
- Don’t be negative. Try to avoid making derogatory comments about your current or previous employer or colleagues.
- Ask questions. Even if the interviewer has been thorough in describing the company and the opportunity, you should still have a couple of questions to ask. This shows that you are interested in the role and that you have done your research on the business.
- End positively. Always try to end your interview with a positive statement such as “I hope to hear from you soon” and make sure you thank the interviewer for their time.
- Keep it simple. A hiring manager is likely to skim read your CV in the first instance, so you want to make sure that the most important parts are clear and not lost within paragraphs of text.
- Presentation. State your employer, job title and then bullet point the responsibilities and achievements you have in your current role and have had in previous roles. This will draw the readers’ attention to your specific skill set.
- Relevance. Keep your CV relevant. Unless you are a school leaver or recent graduate, there is no need to list school accomplishments – focus on your professional achievements, as these will be more relevant to the job you are applying for.
- Tailor your CV. If you can, tailor your CV to best match the requirements set out in the job description. The aim is to make the hiring manager’s role as easy as possible, so if you can clearly demonstrate that you have the skills they are looking for, you are more likely to get an interview.
- Identify accomplishments. Don’t just regurgitate your job description, stating basic tasks, identify what you have done in your role and what changes you have made or value you have added.
- Overview. If you choose to include a brief description of yourself at the start of your CV, keep it short and succinct highlighting your skills and key experience. This will be the first thing the hiring manager reads about you, so first impressions count!
- Length of CV. A lot of people believe their CV should be no more than 1 or 2 pages – for some individuals, that can be impossible. If you have had several jobs, there is no need to elaborate on your earlier roles, simply state your employer, dates and job title. The key is to keep the information in your CV relevant to your current application.
- Personal information. It is not necessary to include your date of birth, nationality or marital status on your CV. If you are including a personal email address, please ensure it is simple and professional.
The BES tree is now fully decorated and it looks like a few people might be getting pressies!
BES is delighted to support Children in Need again this year, a fantastic charity and a great excuse to eat cakes!
It might be holiday season but we have 250 live jobs and our clients are very keen to recruit…..
Register with BES before 4 September 2017 and if we place you successfully in a permanent role and you pass your probation, we will treat you and a guest to a Night of Luxury (DB&B) at Longueville Manor Hotel in Jersey! Yes, we find you the perfect new job and then we will give you a special treat.
A new advertising campaign starts tonight in the JEP. Please see all the vacancy details on the job page of this website or call 01534 486986 today!