Four Simple Tips to being a Stand Out Candidate

The interview process can certainly be a grind for candidates and employers these days, and we want to help both parties succeed!

Photo: Andrew Neel

Here are some items that help candidates stand out to me as I do the initial phone screen.

  • Find a quiet place
  1. Restricting background noise helps ensure the interviewer can hear you clearly. If you’re able, try to find a quiet place to take your call to ensure you are able to sound clear, confident, and prepared.
  • Research the Company
    1. Be able to speak to what the company does, why you’re excited about them, and why you are excited about the opportunity to work with them. Also, see if they’ve been in the news (even local community news!) to share any new stories that interested you.
  • Show your personality
    1. Yes, it’s important to stay professional! But ultimately the team is looking for someone that speaks to them and that they can envision themselves working with day-to-day. Don’t be shy to add colour to the stories you’re sharing through humour, reflection, or aligning to the company’s values.
  • Make Connections
    1. Make reference to specific items you saw in the job posting, and how your experience would support your success, whether your experience feels directly or indirectly aligned with the work at hand.
  • Come prepared with questions
    1. Coming prepared with interesting questions can differentiate a candidate in the process. Some of my favourites are:
      1. What are you most excited about in terms of upcoming work your company is doing?
      2. What is the company culture like?
      3. Has there been any flags for you in this interview or any requirements in the position that I haven’t addressed?
        1. This question may seem bold – but it can be a great opportunity to uncover any misunderstandings that may have come through the interview, and ensures you have spoken to everything the employer cares about. Handle it with humility and enthusiasm.
  • Remember, you’re interviewing the company just as much as they’re interviewing you. The company wants to land good talent that cares! So be confident in utilizing these tips and questions.

    Also, if the recruiter or hiring manager doesn’t share, feel free to ask about next steps in the recruiting process, and when you can expect to hear back.

    And recruiters – close the loop with your candidates! If we’re expecting candidates to do pre-work like research before meeting with us, the absolute least we can do is ensure that candidates that are not successful are left with closure and support.

    What other tips have helped you be successful in interviews?! 

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