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Researching companies before an interview

Posted by
02 Mar 2016
We’ve talked many times the importance of first impressions when going to interview whether this be something as simple as your initial handshake, your appearance or, overall, how you sell yourself. However, I believe one of the most important things in order to make a good impression in an interview, is to know your stuff! You need to able to walk into an interview and, essentially, know more about the company than they know about you. If you look like you are interested in the company as well as the role your applying for, it shows commitment from the starting point.

For me, the first port of call when researching a company is their website. Most companies will have some form of web presence these days which makes it extremely easy to access a wealth of knowledge about your topic. I remember as a child, my father going to the reference library whenever he had an interview in order to research the company - we take for granted how much easier it is to get access to information these days and should use that to our advantage.

Key information to take from a website includes

  1. General information about the company; how they describe what they do, how big they are, how many offices they have
  2. Their values; what means the most to them?
  3. Their goals; where do they want to be and how can you help with that?
  4. Some companies, like Sellick Partnership, also include a blog on their website. This gives a deeper insight into the company, current events and the culture of the company especially if their employees get involved and contribute their views and opinions.

I also like to research any news articles about the company to gain a greater scope on the company’s presence in the media. This is also a good way to discover any issues they may be facing that they may not like to include on their website.

 Knowing a company's history can create good conversation and question opportunities, showing an interest in how they got to where they are now. Again most companies will have some form of social media presence which gives a more personal insight into the day to day happenings in the company and things they may be interested in.

Discovering as much information as possible (even if you don’t get the chance to use it) can only set you in good stead for answering and asking questions and ,overall, creating a good impression at interview stages.

If you would like further advice on the best way to make an excellent first imprssion, please view our candidates resources. View Candidate Resources
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