Have your interview skills been gathering dust while you’ve been rising up the career ladder? Are you facing the daunting prospect of updating your CV with years’ worth of work and unsure how to? These moments can be intimidating regardless of what level you’re working at, but particularly if it’s been a minute since your last interview.
We speak to hundreds of employers weekly and list some fantastic mid to senior roles on our opportunities board, so we know what employers are on the lookout for in interviews for more experienced roles. Here’s some essential tips for anyone who has reached a mid to senior role and wants to get ahead and prepare for your CV and interviews!
Your skills are transferable
You’ve gained valuable experience and a strong skillset at this point. Perhaps you’re interested in a role in a different industry, or with a change in focus, and you’re wondering how to demonstrate skill matches or transferable skills in that interview room. Employers often use the job description as a score sheet, so use it to your advantage. Write down or memorise key prompts so you can add relevance as well as personality.
What makes you unique?
Go armed with observations about how you would add value to the work or services employers already deliver. This could be anything from your culturally relevant insights or how you’d apply training you’ve acquired to the role, or perhaps you’ve had a rather unique pathway into the industry or you’re one of those lucky multi-hyphenate career types who don’t just specialise in one thing. All of this separates you apart from peers you might be competing against.
LinkedIn is a window on your personal brand
What does your LinkedIn profile currently say about you to folks that don’t know you? The chances are that employers will be checking your LinkedIn profile so make sure it’s up to date. You can enhance your credibility through recommendations and skill endorsements from colleagues (complete a few for others and they’ll return the favour). Also remember to add any new credentials and recent achievements to your bio, and engage with other like-minded professionals by commenting and sharing relevant industry insights.
Don’t let nervousness prevent you from shining
Remembering the STARR method (situation, task, action, result & reflection). It’s a great tool for your application and interview. In simple terms, describe a particular challenge, your responsibilities in relation to it, the steps you took to address the challenge – and finally the positive outcome and what it taught you. Rehearsing a couple of project examples from your portfolio ahead of the interview will put you in a great frame of mind.
A second pair of eyes
Get someone who knows your professional capabilities and achievements to look over your CV and help you with interview preparation. It’s easy to be modest when logging your skills and achievements but modesty won’t get you your next role! Use the opportunity to practise your answers to interview questions and get comfortable with what you want to get across to the employer.
Flag necessary reasonable adjustments.
You’re not legally bound to disclose a disability if you’re not comfortable to, however, if making your interview more accessible could benefit you, get in touch with the employer. For example, confirming there’s wheelchair access, a different format for documents, or more time on an interview test.