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How to Ace that Job Interview

By Chirag

Thursday, 05 September 2019


Students were invited from different education institutions across Geelong for the “How to ace that job interview” session at Beav’s Bar. This session was targeted towards international students, particularly new students who had recently started their university life, and may not be unaware about the Australian job market. 

This event was facilitated by Lucinda from the Gordon Skills and Jobs Centre and was perfect for new students to network and make new friends.

It was amazing to learn that there are so many things that can be done during the waiting period from receiving the confirmation of an interview to the actual interview day. The first and foremost thing to be done is preparing and planning.

Preparation for the Interview – mentally visualize the interview, research the role and organisation and if possible the business culture. Some top tips on preparing for the interview from Hays are here.

Planning for the Interview – this includes articulation of the answers to the questions asked, including your knowledge and skills, as well as consideration of body language and interpersonal skills and practising all of them before the actual interview. Some other pointers to keep in mind are:

  • Allow sufficient time to travel to the interview venue by car or public transport and if possible do a trial run.
  • Check for fuel in the car and public transport time table and allow some buffer time considering unforeseen situations.
  • Reach early to venue by at least 15-20 mins.
  • Check for the exact destination and availability of parking.
  • If you decide to walk to the interview venue, make arrangements to keep yourself hydrated.

If by any chance you are running late, only genuine excuses are accepted, such as delay or cancellation of public transport and road congestion perhaps due to an unforeseen accident. In such case contact the authorised person to advise them -  always keep the contact details saved on your phone.

Actual Interview

On the actual interview day candidates should be well dressed and presented, listen well to the questions and answer them clearly in an organised manner. Answering clearly will showcase candidate confidence, ability, motivation and enthusiasm for the role. 

Some master tips and tricks were provided in the session to get over the nervousness that most of us get when we go to an interview. Some of them were preparing, rehearsing, researching, doing breathing exercises and arriving early which will help with relaxation.

Performing well in the interview will help you to achieve the desired outcome, therefore the questions asked should be clearly understood and if required, request the question to be repeated. Additionally, some time could be spent on thinking and framing the response over a sip of water.

The STAR (Situation Task Action Result) method is suggested for framing the response for behavioural type of questions. Information on this approach can be found here.

Things to be taken to interview

  • Brief points to answer the questions
  • Copy of the resume
  • Original licence and qualifications, if needed for the particular job applied

 At the end of Interview

Some of the quick tips to be considered after completion of the interview include asking relevant questions.  Touch upon questions the interviewers have missed, asking estimated time of an outcome and thank them by addressing their first names and a firm (not too tight) hand shake. Additionally, a thank you email can also be sent.

Intervew workshop

At this point in time, the aroma of pizza was wafting in the room, and it was time for food. While everyone grabbed their pizza, mingled around and had a chat, the ambassadors set up a feedback activity. (The responses received from all the guests who had attended the event were very positive.)  

Towards the end, we had a practice session where attendees were paired up and asked to tell their partner about themselves in a minute.

The participants were provided with a handout, “Top 11 interview questions and answers”.  

(Header photo by Lynnea Tan on Unsplash)