The second interview can seem like a frustrating hurdle between you and a successful job offer. Yet that all-important second round has a different character altogether; so it's only natural for you to prepare accordingly. With that in mind here's our fool proof guide for how to prepare for interview number two.
How a second interview differs from the first…
Depending on the organisation and the role you apply for a first interview may have been a box-ticking exercise carried out by HR. Often, it's just to ensure you match the job description and are telling the truth on your CV.
Now though is the time to really sell yourself.
A second interview is the perfect opportunity to demonstrate your skills, provide tangible evidence of the effects your work had and most importantly to set a shining example that makes you stand out from the other candidates. So, to achieve this…
Before interview day, never assume your second interview is going to be in the same location. Larger businesses can mean multiple offices, so make sure you know where and when you're going. If you're going to be travelling to an unknown area, plan a practice run at a similar time and ensure roadworks and rush hours don't spoil your plans.
1) Prepare your clothes
You might want to dress to impress but if you're best shirt is still in the wash from the last interview, you'll want to ensure you have a backup number ready to wear.
Yet, just because you passed the first round shouldn't make you complacent with what you wear. Keep smart and professional with an outfit that reflects the sector you're applying for. If you need a little more inspiration in this department, we've got you covered:
No doubt it's going to be someone different interviewing you this time. From technical experts to your new line manager there's a variety of people who might be there to question you. If you can, confirm who they're going to be and research them via LinkedIn beforehand.
See what their skillset is, what makes them tick and prepare accordingly. From brushing up on technical knowledge to finding mutual topics of conversation, thorough research can really help you to make a good impression and build rapport with your future employers.
3) Review your last interview
Be honest – was there anything you could have done better in your last interview? Maybe you forgot to mention some of your crucial selling points or wish you'd given crisper answers to standard interview questions. Take some time to think back over what was said.
If time allows, work on what could be improved, from developing your interview technique to reading up on latest industry developments. Reflecting on your past performance is going to put you in good stead and help you stand out from other candidates.
4) Plan your question
A combination of nerves and new environments can leave any interviewee with a blurred memory of what just happened. If there was anything that the interviewer discussed that passed you by or questions you forgot to ask - write them down. Remember them. Whatever method of recall you use be sure to give yourself the ability to ask them.
5) Is it the right role?
Remember, a second interview is a two way thing. It's the key opportunity for you to ask questions – lot of questions. As well as helping to demonstrate your enthusiasm it allows you to dig deeper into a business. Asking everything from why the vacancy has become available to the vision of the company is going to reveal whether or not the role is right for you.