A Comprehensive Candidate Interview Guide

Our most important tips and tricks to consider as you prepare for your next interview. Being prepared is a key aspect of landing your next great position. So, make sure to review our guide before your next interview.

The Interview Guide

With over thirty years combined experience in the industry, we at Invoke Staffing have seen our fair share of interviews. Both as the interviewer and the interviewee, we are well-aware of how important this step in the hiring process is. However, that doesn’t make it any less stressful! Don’t worry, we are here to help you as much as we can. We have compiled an interview guide of everything you should do to prepare, whether it be an in-person or over the phone interview. And as always, don’t hesitate to reach out to us if there is anything we can do to help you further.

Before the Big Day

  • Company research:  Review company website along with their Linkedin Company page and any other social media to review projects, employee success highlights etc. Get to know them before your first interview to demonstrate your interest.
  • Review Linkedin: Review the LinkedIn profiles for interviewers. This will help you put a face to a name and familiarize yourself with their background and career path to guide your discussions.
  • Prepare questions: Make a list of some potential questions to ask (some general examples below). Bring these with you and notepad to take notes.
  • Make copies of your resume: Bring 5 copies of your resume to a face-to-face interview. Make sure to check out our resume guide to craft an all-star resume.
  • Dress to impress: Most of our clients will be business casual, but it is always better to overdress a bit rather than under dress.
  • Positive attitude, enthusiasm and energy:  Remember to refrain from speaking negatively about past managers, positions or companies. It is an opportunity to spin the story into a positive learning experience and show you can learn and grow even when things don’t go your way.
  • Arrive early: Arrive 5-15 minutes early for a face-to-face interview. For phone calls, make sure you’re in a quiet place where you won’t be interrupted.  For video calls, please make sure all software works prior to the call.

    Sample Questions to Ask Interviewers

    • How does this position contribute to the organization’s success?
    • What do the most successful new hires do in their first 30/60/90 days?
    • What metrics do you use to measure success in this role?
    • What do you hope I accomplish in this position?
    • What does a typical day look like in this role?
    • What are some of the challenges or roadblocks someone will encounter in the role?
    • What is the biggest challenge the team has faced in the past year?
    • Why did you decide to work at this company?
    • What keeps you motivated to continue working here?
    • Where you do see the company in 5 years?
    • Who do you feel is the company’s top competitor?
    • What are some of the things you and coworkers do outside of work together?
    • What do you think differentiates your company from your competitors?
    • How do managers deliver feedback? Both positive and negative?
    • What does the company do best? What is something the company is still working on getting right?
    • How do I compare to other candidates?
    • How do leaders encourage employees to ask questions? How do they set their team up for success?
    • What are some the things the company does to encourage professional development?
    • Do you have any mentors or career coaches in your organization or company to help you grow?

    Questions YOU Need to Be Prepared to Answer

    • What are your 1, 5 and 20 year career goals?
    • What are you looking for in your next company? How do you choose which roles and companies to apply to? Who else are you interviewing with and why?
    • What are your strengths? Weakness or room to improve?
    • What part of this job do you dislike the most? Like the most?
    • How do you manage multiple priorities if you have limited time?
    • How would your coworkers describe you?
    • How do you handle criticism?
    • How do you handle difficult personalities in the office and on the job site?
    • Explain your career path to date, each position, why you left for the next opportunity (stay positive here always)
    • What are some personal or professional accomplishments you are most proud of?
    • Can you share a time where you were not pleased with your work and why?
    • Who are your role models and mentors?
    • Why are you considering a new role?
    • What are your salary expectations?
    • If you were offered more than one job, how would you decide which one to accept?
    • Do you want to be a manager, leader or executive in this company?
    • Do you have any concerns about this role, company that should be addressed?
    • What kind of projects would make you excited to come to work every day?

    What to Do if You're Caught Off Guard

    A great way to respond to a question that catches you off guard is to first acknowledge the question. Admit that you do not know the answer or had not considered that before. Interviewers ask tough questions but the important thing to remember is that your thought process is usually more important than your answer. Companies want to see someone that can take initiative and have resources to solve a problem. This is much more attractive to interviewers than someone who knows it all or will need to have their hand held through problems that arise.

    Thank-You Emails: The Most Important Part

    Never forget to send a thank-you email to your interviewers. Thank them for their time and interest in you. It is also a good idea to address any outstanding concerns you may have or ask additional questions. This can show your interest and engagement in the position. A thank-you email can also be a great second chance to address any questions you stumbled on during the interview or demonstrate how you would address any outstanding concerns they may have.

    Here to Help

    As always, the Invoke team is here to help out with any questions or concerns you may have. Make sure to reach out if there is anything we can do for you.