What you should know about the Company you are Interviewing with

Apr 24, 2012   //   by Kevin OBrien   //   Blog, Interviewing  //  No Comments

Dropping into an interview without being prepared is a potential disaster in the making. Or by coming prepared, it could be a great way to win the position. For an IT staffing company, preparing candidates to succeed is a major part of the value we provide to any client. But it can’t all rest the staffing organization; the candidate needs to step up to win in this competitive market.

Here are a few quick items that a candidate should know about a company before jumping into an interview:

KNOW THE TECHNOLOGY ENVIRONMENT. For a technologist, it’s vital to be able to talk to the technology that is being used in company. Going blind into an interview without knowing the environment may require the interviewer to ask additional questions, or spend time explaining more than they would like. Coming prepared and knowing the technologies being used will make a nice impression to the person conducting the interview.

WHAT PART OF THE BUSINESS WILL YOU BE INTERVIEWING FOR? Most companies have various departments requiring technology to run them. If a candidate is knowledgeable of the specific department that they will be interviewing with, the impact of the conversations can be more meaningful.

LOGISTICS. This particular item cannot be understated. Understanding the layout of the company, where the parking lot is located, how to get in the front entrance, how to get through security, which location the interview will take place, and how to ask for the person you will interview with are just a few important items to have nailed down. The basics of getting into the building AT THE RIGHT TIME is a critical aspect of winning the interview. Showing up late, or not knowing where to go is a great way to get disqualified. Spend a few minutes knowing all of the logistics required to make it to the interview in a timely fashion and to end up winning the position.

WHO DO YOU KNOW THAT WORKS THERE? This item is not so much company related, but related to the company. It is always possible that a candidate has a connection to the business in some way or another. If so, the intelligence received from having this knowledge can be a great opportunity to perform better in an interview. Find out what connections you have to the company and what role they play in the business.

BUSINESS AND ECONOMIC TRENDS. The trends of a company’s industry are important information to know because some of the projects and changes to the business may be driven by competitive forces or industry happenings. Candidates that know more about a business, the industry, and how these affect the company they are interviewing with, make a difference in the grand scheme of the impression left with the interviewer. Sprinkling bits of knowledge about their business can be a clear differentiator in an interview.

It’s very likely that most candidates that jump into an interview really don’t know these aspects of the company, which is why there is a compelling reason for spending a little time researching the organization to this extent. Yes, there are times where the interviewer could care less about what the candidate knows of the company, when all they want is to know whether or not the person can do the technical work assigned them. But, there is significant value that can be placed on preparedness and knowledge.

So, the question comes back to whether or not you want to win the interview. One more arrow in your quiver can make all the difference, so why not give it a shot next time?


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