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Pre-Interview Research

Tuesday, July 14th, 2015

Last month we discussed how you should go about preparing for an interview. While we touched on “doing your homework,” today we wanted to delve a little deeper into the subject.

Handling your due diligence effectively gives you a variety of ways to make a solid first impression once you’re face-to-face with your interviewer.

Technology Simplifies the Research Process

Living in the Information Age is a gift for today’s professional executive and IT candidates. Armed with a keyboard and a mouse, today you can find out more about a company in 15 minutes than you could have in a day just 20 years ago. (Of course, we’re still hoping you’ll spend more than 15 minutes.)

Below are five nuggets of info to uncover about your potential new employer before walking through their doors for an interview:

1. Company Mission: Most companies have an “About” page on their website. This is a great idea for your first click. Often you’ll find the mission statement there, as well as information about the company’s culture and history. This should give you a solid idea about the type of employees they’re after.

2. Products and Services: A great way to impress your interviewer is by having a solid knowledge base about the company’s products and services. In fact, you can even take the time to brush up on some of the products and services you might not be familiar with. While you’re at it, dig deeper to learn about the company’s customers and clients, too.

3. Key Personnel: Knowing the key personnel within your prospective employer will also prove you’ve done your homework. From the CEO to other members of the leadership team, putting names with faces could also help you if you actually get the job. Additional tip: learn a little bit about your interviewer if possible.

4. Latest Headlines: Has your employer been in the news of late? Checking their blog or using a quick Google search can keep you abreast of all current events. Showing that you’re keeping an eye on company news during your interview proves that you’ve taken a real interest in your hoped-for employer.

5. Their Competition: By now you probably have a good handle on the company, so it’s time to branch out and learn as much as possible about their competitors. Exhibiting competitor knowledge within your interview not only shows you’ve brushed up on the “enemy,” but also shows industry knowledge as well.

Remember the Boy Scout Motto?

“Be Prepared.” It’s a great life lesson, one every adult knows but often finds hard to put into practice. When you’re on the hunt for a job, you need every edge you can get. So if you’ve run the gauntlet of résumé submission to phone interview to land a face-to-face interview, give yourself the best shot possible to land the gig by taking the time to do your interview homework.

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